Hi everyone, my name is Oliver and I am currently a Spring Vacation Scheme student in the Corporate M&A practice at Baker McKenzie. With the first week coming to a close, this is a great opportunity to reflect on some of the scheme’s highlights so far and share some insights into the firm.
Monday started with a welcome breakfast where all the Vacation Scheme students could get to know one another. From here we had a packed schedule that included comprehensive IT, library and telephone training sessions. A particular highlight of mine was Monday lunchtime’s trip to The Happenstance restaurant where I got to meet my Trainee buddy, Kate. Having encountered Baker McKenzie many times prior to starting my scheme, it was no surprise how friendly and welcoming everyone has been.
The first day set the tone for a very busy week. For me, all the attractions of working within a leading global firm have been reflected in the work I have been involved in so far. Alongside some interesting client matters, I have completed two research tasks, one concerning the life sciences sector and another on a recent development within contract law. For me, this experience has been marked by how keenly everyone values your contribution. For example, my supervisor, Maria, took time out of her busy schedule to outline how my research impacted a substantial multi-jurisdictional client matter.
Fantastic socials, such as Tuesday’s drinks evening and Thursday’s curry night, have provided a great opportunity to meet the firm’s Trainees outside of work. As I write, a few of them have just invited me out to lunch. Next week I will be moving to Baker McKenzie’s Dispute Resolution practice and will keep you posted!
It’s been another busy week on Baker McKenzie’s Spring Vacation Scheme, this time in the dispute resolution department. I’ve had plenty of opportunity. Everyone has been keen to give me as much responsibility as possible. Tuesday saw my fellow Vacation Scheme students and I grapple with the world of Business Development as we embarked on a mock client pitch exercise.
Sitting in the disputes departments has enabled me to experience some really varied work. On Wednesday I was dividing my time between summarising EU legislation and scrutinising a set of pre-negotiated terms and conditions for unexpected changes. I’ve also had the opportunity to attend a hearing in the Court of Appeal and participate in a networking lunch hosted by the Corporate department. Outside of the Disputes Resolution department, I’ve benefited from a presentation on the firm’s approach to diversity and inclusion. Pro bono work is another area where Baker McKenzie enables its lawyers to get involved. As part of the Disputes Resolution team’s regular program of talks, I was able to learn more about EU asylum law; an area I otherwise would not have had the opportunity to study.
With only one day remaining, there are still a number of events left to attend. Last night everyone headed out to Bounce to unwind with a few drinks and some ping-pong. I am particularly looking forward to the farewell lunch at the Shard.