A career in law has always appealed to me, but the traditional route to becoming a lawyer was off-putting due to the fees and length of time required without a salary. The route I have chosen minimises the cost of training and reduces the time to start earning, while also giving me recognised qualifications and hands-on experience. This is a win-win situation in my eyes.
After leaving school I followed many of my fellow pupils and went off to university (to study English Literature). However I discovered that it wasn’t for me and, after taking some time out, decided to leave, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do next. I wanted to find a job which allowed me to keep studying and enhance the knowledge I’d acquired, while still allowing me to earn a wage – a legal apprenticeship was the perfect fit for me.
I did not feel that I was well suited to the normal university route as I have always learnt better by doing rather than listening but I knew that I wanted to work in the legal field ever since I did work experience at a criminal law firm. I began researching different ways into law and after months of research I came across two law firms offering the advanced legal apprenticeship. I then did my research into what this involved and what opportunities it produced and I knew this was what I wanted to do.
Since it’s National Apprentice Week, we thought it was only right that we talk to someone currently doing an internship to find out what it was REALLY like, what their internship entails and what they loved and hated about it.
The Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Legal Services is a great way for young people to make in-roads into the legal profession. Although in its infancy, the Level 3 provides a great opportunity for the apprentice to develop the core skills, which, ultimately, a qualified legal practitioner in their day-to-day work will need, whilst simultaneously providing the sound academic foundations required for working in the legal sector.
I started my apprenticeship at Morrisons Solicitors as a baby-faced 18 year old fresh out of sixth form. I had never worked full-time before, let alone in an office environment, and I was still coming to terms with the fact that I would never have a 6 week summer holiday again.
I have been working as a Paralegal Apprentice for Irwin Mitchell for six months. I first thought of apprenticeships when I didn’t feel completely comfortable at the idea of going to university and was introduced to them by career advisors. I felt my sixth form really pushed students to go down the university route, so I was proactive and worked on my CV before attending careers and apprenticeship events in my local area.
I have been employed as a solicitor apprenticeship with ITV’s in-house legal department for six months. I applied for the apprenticeship because I wanted to gain valuable practical legal experience as well as getting the necessary qualifications to become a fully qualified solicitor.
I am employed by HMRC as a legal apprentice and have been following the Advanced Apprenticeship in Legal Services for three months.
I am 18 months into my legal apprenticeship at Hill Dickinson, an international, commercial law firm.