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Vac scheme hiccup... what now? watch

    • Thread Starter

    Hi there,

    A little about me, I'm in my 2nd year law degree at Oxford. When applying for VS placement, I focused on City firms as this seemed to be what other people were doing, and I had no reason to suspect that the City wasn't for me. However, I have now discovered that I would probably not be suited to working in the City, and have instead decided to focus on regional firms. I was unsuccessful in gaining a VS with the firms I applied to (which were all Silver Circle), and the feedback received from my applications was mixed. I interviewed well, but my commercial awareness wasn't up to the level they were looking for and the experience has made me realise that a smaller, less high-powered firm would suit me better.

    Having missed getting a VS and not being entirely sure of which area of law I would most enjoy I wondered if any of you have been in the same position and if so, how did you find your way? I believe that commercial law is broadly the area I want to work in, although this is far from an educated decision!

    I'm not sitting around, I am trying hard to obtain work experience from regional firms in the North and South Midlands. But is there something else I could be following up? I really do want to be a solicitor and any advice you could bestow upon a confused student would be brilliant. :confused:


    Cassie, is the reason that you think you're not suited for City firms because you got rejected, or because you came to some realisation that high-powered commercial law is not for you? I ask because it seems the only reason that you've changed your mind is because you were unsuccessful this year (to be honest, it sounds like you probably just don't know what kind of law is for you, because of lack of experience, which is fine), and to avoid getting despondent about it, have changed track. I think it's important not to worry too much about this particular failure. I totally failed to get any vac schemes in second year as well (although I was non-law), but I still got a TC before the end of uni.

    On the other hand, if you have set your heart against the City, that's fine as well.

    What I suggest is that you try to get some experience at regional firms, whatever, but don't let it bother you too much. If you get something, great; if not try to do something reasonably constructive over the summer (any kind of work experience would work; preferably commercial or legal, but law firms look well on charities as well, or teaching overseas). Then, in third year, you'll have a better idea of what you want and you can start applying for TCs then.
    • Thread Starter


    Although being rejected by City firms didn't improve my feelings towards them, I have realised that high-powered commercial law isn't for me - the more research I did on the firms, the less I felt that I would fit in working for them.

    Thanks I'm trying to stay positive, but I do think the smaller regional firms are where it's at for me! It's nice to know that vac schemes aren't the be all and end all though.

    Great advice - I'm going to head in that direction, and try to have a productive summer. I feel much better knowing that you went through something similar and came out the other side.

    Generally feeling good about things now :cool:

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