Over one hundred London state school sixth form students have attended the first day of Lawyer 2B’s two-day careers event in the City of London.
Hosted at BPP’s business school in the shadow of City landmark The Gherkin yesterday, the day aimed to arm year 12 students with knowledge of the legal world and the tools to carve out a legal career.
Trainees and graduate recruitment managers from Linklaters, Bircham Dyson Bell, Freshfields and Baker & McKenzie as well as BPP academic staff and pupil barrister Suzanne Staunton from Old Square Chambers spoke to students about the basics of a successful legal career.
Baker & McKenzie trainees Peter Moules and Christine Kumar talked to students about how lawyers negotiate contracts and gave students an exercise on the potential purchase of an ethical sportswear brand by a luxury fashion house while Bircham Dyson Bell trainees Monika Weglarz and Diana Jackson asked students about their perception of the City and discussed how the financial news of a day might be interpreted in a legal context.
Freshfields trainee recruitment manager Jessica Booker talked to students about City law in practice while Sharon Jacobs, graduate marketing adviser at Linklaters, took students through the steps to qualification as a solicitor.
Representing the bar, Staunton used a fictional dispute between footballer Liam Waterford and his sponsor to highlight the skills needed for a successful negotiation.
The day ended with a question and answer session with a panel of law firm and bar representatives. Questions ranged from whether trainees and pupils had any regrets about embarking on a legal career to the intricacies of negotiating and the diversity of the profession.
Booker told students: “Diversity is one of the key things on every commercial law firm’s agenda. They are doing everything they can to rectify the fact that the legal profession does not currently look very diverse. Truthfully, seven or eight years ago, I don’t know whether I could say that. Now I can.”
The year 12 careers event is now in its sixth year.
Students from 16 UK state schools are set to take over the Royal Courts of Justice in London for the national final of the Bar Mock Trial Competition later this month (1 March 2013).