For my Vacation Placement at Pinsent Masons I joined the Corporate team in Glasgow for three weeks in June. The team is one of the biggest in the firm and everyone was incredibly welcoming, ensuring I slotted in well for my time in the office.
Every Vacation Placement Student is allocated at least one trainee buddy and a more senior supervisor. My trainee buddies, Fraser and Lucy, were the highlight of my time with the firm. They were more than happy to take time out of their schedule to explain not only the tasks I was engaged with, but the exticing clients we work with and how the work I was doing fitted in to the deal and the wider work the team does. This meant that no matter what I was doing, from drafting board minutes to filing forms at Companies House, I always felt as though I had a good grasp of the task at hand. If I didn’t understand something, I was always happy to ask knowing they wouldn’t mind.
The Corporate team in Glasgow advises on some of the largest deals not just in Scotland but in the UK, therefore my Vacation Placement was an excellent opportunity to gain exposure to some exciting transactions. It was incredibly motivating to think that the tasks I completed would fit in to a larger piece of work. One great example of seeing the big picture was when Lucy took the time to explain one of the transactions the team was advising on which was was a strategic buyout of one of the client’s suppliers. This transaction highlighted to me the importance of lawyers being able to understand client’s business, offer advice beyond the law and predict the commercial implications of legal choices.
The wider team also went out of their way to get me involved and up to speed. The prime example being them inviting me along to their away day on the Isle of Great Cumbrae. The day clashed with the Training Contract Assessment Centre, however one of the Partners, Kevin, along with Maureen (PA) both went out of their way to make sure I could make it along. Fortunately, after the assessment I made the train trip down to Largs and managed to catch the ferry across in time for lunch and the pub quiz. As well as being a fun day out, the trip was also a good opportunity to meet people I haven’t worked with yet and discuss what they’re currently working on.
The Vacation Placement offered a fantastic insight into Pinsent Masons, the work the firm advises on and, most of all, the supportive culture. The team atmosphere accelerated my exposure to a high-profile transactions and enhanced my learning experience making it a fantastic three weeks.
My name is Jennifer and this summer I embarked upon a nerve-wracking journey as I was beginning my first ever virtual summer placement. However, as I reflect on my time at Pinsent Masons, all I feel is gratitude that I was fortunate enough to be involved in such an incredible experience.
Vacation schemes these days are likened to ‘gold dust’ for many reasons – they’re difficult to secure but experiencing them is very valuable. Add to that the highly competitive graduate recruitment market, the somewhat daunting application and assessment process and the fact that the majority of law firms recruit at the same time, meaning the preparation and submission of several application forms in a short period of time and it’s a tricky time for any future lawyer.
‘Champion change, promote progress and enable everyone to make business work better for people’.