Editor’s Weekly: Are you magic circle material?

I was at a careers adviser conference at BPP Law School yesterday. The event was a great way of getting up to speed with all the latest developments in legal education and training.

But the most interesting aspect of the day was listening to two students about their experiences of trying to secure a training contract and the support they got from their university careers service.

One of the comments that left me wondering was from a former Brunel student who claimed that her university careers adviser told her that she wasn’t magic circle material.

Although it must’ve been soul destroying to hear such words I couldn’t help but think that landing a training contract with a magic circle firm isn’t the be all and end all (I should know – I worked for one). Indeed, when I asked the student why she like so many of her peers was so determined to break into the magic circle she compared it to a sporting activity – you enter a race to win it NOT to come runner up.

I do have some sympathy after all I felt exactly the same when I was looking for my training contract. But now I strongly believe that before entering a race it makes a lot of sense to assess the likelihood of winning. By setting myself more realistic goals surely I’ll have a much better chance of succeeding?

Besides, there are plenty of opportunities for aspiring lawyers outside the magic circle and indeed outside the City.

After all, if we all wanted to be magic circle lawyers the world would be a pretty dull place.

husnara.begum@lawyer 2b.com