A year in the life of a trainee
In September 2017, I upped sticks to Milton Keynes from my home county of Sussex to start my training contract at EMW. My daily life has since been action-packed with new tasks, internal and external meetings and interesting events, and I can't quite believe how the time has flown.
I spent my first seat in Commercial Real Estate, where I enjoyed drafting leases and licences and dabbling in planning and construction law. I then had the chance to complete a client secondment with Domino's in-house legal team. This was an amazing opportunity to see things from 'the other side' by gaining an understanding of a business and its legal needs from within, and, of course, to 'taste test' plenty of yummy pizza! My time with Domino's opened up my eyes to the world of commercial contracts and data protection law, which, admittedly, I hadn't previously considered as a career route. I liked the work so much, that, on my return to EMW, I approached HR to factor in a stint in EMW's Commercial Contracts team into my training, which the teams were happy to accommodate
I've since completed seats with EMW's Corporate and Employment teams, with whom my highlights included assisting in client meetings on multi-million pound M&A deals and tapping away alongside journos in an 11-day discrimination hearing at the London Employment Tribunal. I'm now working with EMW's Commercial Contracts team, where I'm finding that private practice commercial work is living up to expectations built during my Domino's secondment. Next, I'll move to our London office for a final six month seat in Litigation, before qualifying in September 2019. Although I'm now well settled in MK, I'm looking forward to the buzz of working from our Chancery Lane office and to navigating the maze-like Royal Courts of Justice whilst filing court documents.
My overall training experience at EMW has surpassed expectations. The programme is well-structured and is constantly being fine-tuned thanks to quarterly 'trainee forums', in which matters affecting trainees are discussed and addressed. The quality of work here is high, and it's great that the firm encourages trainees to get involved with business development from the get-go. I've particularly enjoyed acting as a committee member for the Northants and Bucks Junior Lawyers Division, with whom I've organised a variety of networking and careers events, including a Christmas ball at a local country house. I've also taken part in forums with the national Junior Lawyers Division, represented EMW at university careers fairs and attended a host of other events with clients and local professionals. Work aside, there is a community feel to trainee life at EMW; as a group of eight trainees, we often catch up over lunch and arrange informal drinks and meals out.
Since my arrival at EMW, I've witnessed the firm's willingness to evolve with the rapid set-up of its shiny new Gatwick office. I don't doubt that further big plans are in the pipeline for the firm, so who knows what additional opportunities will be on offer for future trainees.
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