Meet Vruksha, a Trainee Solicitor

An honest journey into law with Vruksha Patel, Trainee Solicitor at Bird & Bird

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Vruksha Patel

Bird & Bird LLP

What have you done as a trainee which you didn’t expect to do before joining the firm?

I got involved in the firm’s D&I initiatives in my first seat and helped to launch our Period Positivity drive which saw free sanitary products brought into bathrooms in our London office. I also helped the team to find a great sustainable brand for the products. I didn’t expect to contribute towards a such a big change so soon!

What has been your favourite seat* so far, and why?

I’d say Dispute Resolution. The work we do covers all of our client sectors, and no two weeks feel the same! It ranges from smaller claims which can give trainees a lot of hands-on experience, to multimillion pound international disputes where you get to collaborate with a number of colleagues across our 32 offices and learn about the more strategic aspects of any dispute.

*A seat is a period of time where you will ‘sit’ in a department and learn about the work there. At Bird & Bird, trainee solicitors experience four seats for six months each over their two-year training contract, sitting across different department such as Commercial, Corporate, and Intellectual Property.

What was it like being a future trainee – did you study or work beforehand? What support were you given?

I worked as a paralegal for five years before joining Bird & bird, including in-house legal teams, other city law firms, and the Government. In the two years prior to starting, there were planned socials, events and networking opportunities which kept us in contact with the firm, but Bird & Bird also gave me the freedom to pursue my own work experience in that period.

What advice would you give to aspiring lawyers today?

Don’t be disheartened if the training contract takes time to secure. For every successful applicant, there will usually be hundreds who are unfortunately not. Take the time to understand which skills you could develop in preparation for the next opportunity and try not to focus too much on replicating those whose paths differ to yours – there really is no one right way to get an offer!

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