Meet the Team


Haleemah Ahmed

Trainee Solicitor


Why Dentons?

There is no doubt that the truly global nature of Dentons is striking, operating in over 75 countries in 180 locations. The global reach of the firm inspired me to apply for a vacation scheme at the firm as I aspired to have an international career, dealing regularly with lawyers from all over the world. During my vacation scheme in July 2020, I got an insight into such career. Even though the world was in the midst of lockdown, Associates were completing deals with parties working across the globe which I found both exciting and astonishing.

Fast forward one year, I was lucky enough to begin my training contract a year earlier than planned and right from my first week I have been involved in high profile and high value deals. Although this was daunting at first, the departmental training and support from Associates and Partners helped me confidently navigate the first few weeks of my training contract.

Life as a Trainee at Dentons

As a trainee, I have been very lucky as I have been allocated seats that I had put down as top choices. For my first seat, I was in the Corporate Funds Team which is split between the Edinburgh and London offices. This team largely deals with the formation and structuring of investment funds as well as advising funds on their regulatory obligations. For my second and current seat, I was allocated to the Banking & Finance Team in the Glasgow office. This team deal with trade finance, often acting for both lenders and borrowers on real estate and corporate financing transactions.

Although these departments accommodate different client needs, from a trainee perspective they are very similar and require similar skills set. Currently as a banking trainee I will usually begin my day with a vanilla latte as I read through any emails that came through the evening before so I can create a list of urgent tasks that need to be completed that day. At Dentons you will often work with clients or lawyers based in different jurisdictions so queries or instructions may come in overnight and it's important to stay organised and on top of these.

Part of my day also involves attending training sessions. The Banking Team provide weekly training sessions for trainees that cover the most important aspects of banking and finance deals. Apart from this, the firm also organise training on important topical issues, such as the impact of sanctions. I find these training sessions very useful to develop my understanding of the practice area and develop key skills such as drafting.

However, as I progress through my training contract I am finding that life as a trainee is not all about being stuck behind a desk. At Dentons everyone is supportive of your development and are very happy for you to meet clients. As a first year trainee I have had the opportunity to meet clients on a number of occasions. Whenever I do have any client meetings scheduled I make sure to print out any relevant documents in advance and check the news for any updates regarding the client's business. Having these opportunities right at the start of my career has been exciting and motivating.

Apart from the typical trainee tasks, Dentons provides trainees with the opportunity to be involved in innovation projects that involve looking at how the firm can transform and improve the way it does things. As part of this project I have been involved in automating core documents that are regularly used by the firm. My involvement in these projects has been incredibly helpful in developing my commercial understanding of how to make firms more profitable and cost effective.

Dentons is a very social firm and organising social events is always encouraged. At Dentons the trainee intake is not too big, which means that it is easy to get to know the other trainees at the firm. Every couple of weeks, all the trainees try to get together for drinks or dinner to catch up. At Dentons there are also team socials where the department you are sitting in will organise something fun to do after work. Some of the recent socials at the firm have included bowling nights and attending shows at the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh.

Advice for applying for traineeship at Dentons

Starting early and doing plenty of research is key. Researching firms online is great but attending events and insight evenings at the firm will help you understand the firm's culture and people and ultimately why that firm is unique. Dentons organises a number of events throughout the year. Make sure to look out for these and register early!

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