My name is Amelia Fox, and I am currently studying for my A levels in Law, Criminology and Physical Education. Whilst it is a huge amount of work, I am really enjoying the subjects, especially law. I intend to apply to Ellisons for the Solicitor Apprenticeship programme starting in September 2022.
From 4th April to 14th of April, I attended the Vacation Scheme. This blog will provide you with some insight into what my experience and what to expect should you be interested in attending in the future.
What attracted you to the Vacation Scheme?
Having decided that I would like to pursue a career in law, I considered that the Vacation scheme would be an excellent opportunity to gain practical experience within a leading East Anglian law firm working alongside legal professionals allowing me to ask questions and discuss law as a career.
Furthermore, I saw the Vacation scheme as an opportunity to discuss the solicitor apprenticeship route with the current apprentices, discovering their opinions and experiences. For example, I had a useful discussion with Katie King, one of the current Solicitor apprentices, regarding dispute resolution as this is an area that I am interested in.
It is a privilege to have the opportunity to experience what Ellisons as a firm is like before actually applying for a position within the company, as not only does it allow me to understand the legal working practices but also the culture and core values of the company.
What has your time consisted of?
My time at Ellisons has involved a very busy timetable of work, talks, inductions, and tasks to aid development such as mock interviews.
It was interesting to understand how Ellisons run as a business. The talks from HR, IT, finance, marketing, and compliance illustrated the importance of team work as without these teams Ellisons would be unlikely to run as smoothly and as seamlessly as it does.
Furthermore, many talks with the current Solicitor Apprentices have provided me with an insight into the working world at Ellisons and has further confirmed my decision to go down the Solicitor apprenticeship route.
One activity I particularly enjoyed was the client meeting skills session to which I had to write down the points raised within the meeting and create an attendance note shortly after the meeting finished.
Furthermore, my talk with BPP university was very interesting as it provided me with a detailed overview of the qualification route including what resources and support would be available to me.
Other activities that I have really enjoyed and benefited from were the client care and ethics training with Saish and Katie which I would be studying as part of the BPP law qualification. I also worked within the Immigration department with Sohan Sidu and James Heather as well as the Wills, Trusts and Probate department with Kiri Nichols.
Ellisons arranged for a mock hearing to aid the development of advocacy skills but also to provide me with some real experience of a hearing. However, unfortunately despite every effort my team and I were unsuccessful in our claims. But we did accept that it was a losing battle from the outset.
On my final day I attended a mock interview as well as a networking event. The mock interview was useful as it provided me with the experience of a structured interview as well as advice and feedback on how I conducted myself. The networking event was excellent opportunity to socialise with the lovely people at Ellisons and develop my professional contacts.
What did you enjoy the most about the Vacation Scheme?
It is very difficult to choose as my time at Ellisons has been full of exciting tasks and opportunities.
However, the highlight of my two weeks has been going to work at Ellisons meeting the lovely people. I must emphasise that all the staff are extremely professional, kind, and welcoming. Furthermore, meeting the other Vacation scheme students has been equally enjoyable and I hope to see them again in the foreseeable future.
What are your ambitions?
My overall ambition is to become a qualified Solicitor. I want to pursue a career in law because I find it interesting and diverse. In carrying out a job as a Solicitor I am looking forward to providing support for individuals to ensure the protection of their rights and needs.
Although my main ambition is to become a qualified Solicitor, it is also very important that I find the right Solicitors firm for me. It is important to find a firm that values its employees and provides professional support during my work and studies. At the same time, it is also important to work within a friendly environment. Throughout my time here at Ellisons, I have realised that Ellisons fulfil all of these with a clear emphasis on teamwork and valuing all their employees and clients.
What do you like about Ellisons?
I think that Ellisons as a firm promote the values which I view as fundamental within a business. A value which I believe is key is ‘working together as one’, working together as a team ensures that the client is provided with excellent service and that the employees are happy within the workplace. During my short period of time at Ellisons it is evident to me that these values are not only preached but practised.
Furthermore, their values are emphasised in that they invest in a structured training plan for aspiring solicitors, which within the industry is not always the norm.
Would you recommend the Vacation Scheme?
I would recommend the Vacation scheme to anyone who is considering law as a career or if you are considering working within Ellisons specifically.
The Vacation scheme provides you with the advantage of understanding how a law firm operates and what to expect when working within a law firm. Furthermore, it may reinforce your ambitions to become a Solicitor (or maybe not), allowing you to feel more confident in the fact that law is the correct career path to pursue.
Also, the Vacation scheme provides you with a useful insight into the legal departments within Ellisons allowing you to choose which area of law you feel interests you the most!
Certainly, in my experience, the Vacation scheme has provided me with more confidence within the workplace as on the face of it law firms can seem quite daunting. Furthermore, the Vacation scheme has reinforced my ambitions to become a Solicitor and I will certainly be applying for the apprenticeship at Ellisons soon.