What are apprenticeships like?

People often believe apprenticeships are low-level qualifications that don’t lead anywhere. However there are over 200 apprenticeships to choose from, offering 1,200 roles.

For example, when I have completed the Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship in Legal Services, I will be at the same level as somebody who has completed their first year studying law at university.

I particularly liked the idea of combining academic and practical experience in my route to qualification as a legal professional. I prefer to learn on the basis of a ‘hands-on’ approach, which I feel gives me a deeper understanding of the law and the way Weightmans works. I was very keen to train in a firm that offers me a structured training plan and prospect of career progression, as Weightmans does and I like the idea of a blend of learning methods and ongoing assessments through portfolio evidence.

As I work in the Dedicated Disease Unit at Weightmans, the most surprising thing that I have learnt is how many aspects of law there are within disease. Before I started at Weightmans I believed that I would be doing the same activities every day. However the tasks that I carry out daily are always changing due to the complexity and uniqueness of each individual case.  

A typical day at Weightmans can be quite busy and challenging. At first I was focused on administrative tasks such as filing, logging of post, opening of new files and logging these details into the database. However, after eight to ten weeks of working here I started to be given more responsibility from the fee earners in my department: I now review important documents such as occupational health records, medical records and personnel records.

Natassia Sinclair is an apprentice at Weightmans