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Routes into Law: Internal Training Contract

I decided to pursue a career in law on the back of my law A-Level which had introduced me to the subject. I did not have a particular interest in any one area of law at that stage but I had enjoyed it to the point where I wanted to study it further and thought it would make for an interesting but challenging career.

I went on to study law at the University of Liverpool in 2013. Whilst at university I worked part time in legal and non-legal positions to try and gain some relevant transferable skills. In my third year at university, I selected a module which involved working in the university law clinic on live matters and volunteered at Vauxhall Community Law Centre. I knew I was interested in commercial law from studying commercial modules in my third year but having had no experience in a commercial firm I held off making applications for vacation schemes and training contracts.

Following graduation and in the knowledge that I wanted to obtain experience working in the commercial legal sector I secured a paralegal role in the insurance fraud team at DWF's Liverpool office. I had applied for a position at DWF because of their growing national and international presence and their full service offering to well know commercial clients. As I was working as a paralegal, I was able to gain a better understanding of the DWF culture and the type of work it carries out for its clients. I then made the decision that DWF was the right fit for me and it was where I wanted to train and qualify as a Solicitor.

I was unsuccessful in my first internal training contract application following the assessment centre stage of the process. It is always difficult to face rejection but I used that experience to identify any areas I thought I could improve upon. In the following months I pushed myself to gain a deeper understanding of the business and improve my commercial awareness. I engaged with lots of corporate social responsibility initiatives and internal and external networking events to improve my skill base and raise my internal profile. All of that was helped by being in a supportive team and having a supervisor who had professional development high up on their list of priorities.

I made another training contract application the following year which was successful at the application and assessment centre stages. At DWF there is a final stage of the application process known as Meet the Leaders in which the successful assessment centre candidates spend a morning meeting the senior leaders from around the business. This was a brilliant opportunity to network and find out more about the business. I was ultimately offered a training contract to start in 2019 which made all the hard work feel worth it!

I started my LPC at BPP University in Manchester in September 2018. DWF arranged for some LPC modules to be taught in classes exclusively with other DWF trainees from across the country which was a fantastic way to network with and get to know my future trainee colleagues.

So far I have completed seats in Real Estate, Litigation, Commercial Insurance and I am now sat in Commercial. I have been involved in a wide variety of interesting work in all of my seats and I have had the opportunity to work alongside and learn from some excellent people.

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