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Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP

Employee profile

Helen Stonier

Trainee Solicitor

How the graduate got the job and why they chose your company

After graduating from Bristol University with a Joint Honours in Spanish and French, I attended an Easter vacation scheme at Clyde & Co. During this time I found the type of work that I got involved with engaging and varied. I was encouraged by the number of departments whose work sounded interesting to me. I was also impressed with the vacation scheme and the various people I met during my time here, all of whom were very approachable.

What the graduate’s role involves: typical activities and key responsibilities

Trainees experience a wide variety of tasks throughout their training contracts which vary by department and become more sophisticated with time. Typical activities include preparing research notes, general case management and obtaining counsel and experts. I have drafted emails or letters of advice, agreements, reports to insurers and instructions to counsel. I have also attended numerous meetings and hearings during my time here.

What training the graduate has received

The first three weeks of the training contract were spent on a Professional Skills Course plus other firm training. At the start of every seat, each department does specific department training for their next trainees. Departments also hold client training seminars and legal update sessions that trainees can attend. The firm holds regular lunchtime training sessions throughout the year on many areas of law.

If the graduate is on a structured/formal scheme, what that involves

he training contract involves four seats lasting six months each. I spent my first seat in the Employment, Pensions & Immigration Department and my second in the Aviation Liability Department. We are required to complete one transactional and one contentious seat. At the end of the training contract, we apply for the department(s) at the firm that we would like join.

Highlights of the work the graduate has done

I have thoroughly enjoyed both seats that I have so far experienced and I think that we are fortunate in that the firm has a large amount of very interesting, dynamic and current work due to the nature of our key sectors. Particular highlights of the work I have done to date are: drafting legal advice and reports; running smaller matters largely on my own; attending various hearings and meetings; and assisting on a matter which had international media coverage throughout my second seat.

What the graduate enjoys about their job

I enjoy the varied and academically challenging nature of the job, which keeps it engaging and means that I am always learning new skills. I have found the role of a solicitor requires a very practical, commercial and hands-on approach which I think is what can make it so interesting.

What challenges the graduate has faced and how they have overcome any difficult situations – what support has been provided

Starting the training contract was daunting but the firm, my departments and other trainees made the transition extremely easy. The firm has an open culture and there is always someone willing to answer your questions, even up to partner level.

Why they like working for you and anything that is particularly perky!

I particularly enjoy working at Clyde & Co because whilst it has fascinating work and opportunities, the people are also very down-to-earth and fun to be around. There are regular firm-wide events on the 13th floor which has fantastic views over London as well as various departmental socials which always have a good turnout.