Law/Training Contract help! History degree -> GDL unpreparedness! Watch

History Grad 59
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Hi there,

As the title, and my name, suggests, I’ve just graduated with a history degree and have got onto a GDL course. I thought I was really well prepared for the future and have undertaken a few lots of work experience this summer to prepare me for next year.

Then today as I was leaving one of these work experience things someone asked who my training contract was with and that there was a two year wait for some Training Contracts - I’ve since looked up the deadlines and found out that some deadlines to apply for 2020 (after I hopefully finish my GDL and LPC) have already closed, as have some even for 2021. I have yet to apply for any training contracts.

I’m aware that these are likely only really the very major/in demand or very locally sourced (school schemes etc) law firms, but its got me worried. I’m having to pay for this GDL myself because of my complacency and I was wondering if I’ve really left it too late to join some of these firms in 2020.

Tomorrow I’m building a list of application start dates and deadlines, but I’m worried that I may have missed out on a quite a number of firms. Is this application route, through firm websites, the only way to gain training contracts? If I attended law fairs or called up firms and spoke to recruitment staff could I still wriggle my way in?
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JohanGRK
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(Original post by History Grad 59)
Hi there,

As the title, and my name, suggests, I’ve just graduated with a history degree and have got onto a GDL course. I thought I was really well prepared for the future and have undertaken a few lots of work experience this summer to prepare me for next year.

Then today as I was leaving one of these work experience things someone asked who my training contract was with and that there was a two year wait for some Training Contracts - I’ve since looked up the deadlines and found out that some deadlines to apply for 2020 (after I hopefully finish my GDL and LPC) have already closed, as have some even for 2021. I have yet to apply for any training contracts.

I’m aware that these are likely only really the very major/in demand or very locally sourced (school schemes etc) law firms, but its got me worried. I’m having to pay for this GDL myself because of my complacency and I was wondering if I’ve really left it too late to join some of these firms in 2020.

Tomorrow I’m building a list of application start dates and deadlines, but I’m worried that I may have missed out on a quite a number of firms. Is this application route, through firm websites, the only way to gain training contracts? If I attended law fairs or called up firms and spoke to recruitment staff could I still wriggle my way in?
2020 is closed. The deadline for direct 2020 TCs was July 31st, and interviews are taking place as we speak.

TCs for 2021 will open in Sep/Oct.

If you're graduating from your GDL in 2019, you have a year to fill in until the LPC starts for the 2021 TC intake. I'd start preparing on what to do now. Do you wanna paralegal? Do a Master's? Travel? You've got 12 months to figure it out
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History Grad 59
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(Original post by JohanGRK)
2020 is closed. The deadline for direct 2020 TCs was July 31st, and interviews are taking place as we speak.

TCs for 2021 will open in Sep/Oct.

If you're graduating from your GDL in 2019, you have a year to fill in until the LPC starts for the 2021 TC intake. I'd start preparing on what to do now. Do you wanna paralegal? Do a Master's? Travel? You've got 12 months to figure it out
Hi there - thanks for your answer but I'm not entirely sure if you are right. The following site has a tonne of deadlines and I've seen a number of firms' websites say their applications for 2020 are yet to open (therefore are not listed on this website)
https://www.lawcareers.net/Solicitor...nes#disclaimer
Have I misunderstood this? I can still apply for these training contracts, right?
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JohanGRK
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(Original post by History Grad 59)
Hi there - thanks for your answer but I'm not entirely sure if you are right. The following site has a tonne of deadlines and I've seen a number of firms' websites say their applications for 2020 are yet to open (therefore are not listed on this website)
https://www.lawcareers.net/Solicitor...nes#disclaimer
Have I misunderstood this? I can still apply for these training contracts, right?
You haven't misunderstood it at all - I was just thinking of a certain category of firm that isn't represented in the list you provided: https://www.lawcareers.net/Solicitor...nes#disclaimer. Keep in mind that the page defaults to 'all TCs', which include 2021.

There are a handful of solid City firms on that list (HSF, HL, DLA), but most City firms have had their 2020 TC deadline pass in July (hence why they're not listed on that page). The rest of the firms seem to be regional/high street affairs.

It's always okay for one to rush a last-minute TC app, but I have to wonder whether someone in your position would be better served by taking a step back, and applying for both vac schemes and TCs for 2021. It's only a year's difference, and you'll have a much stronger application if you interview next summer than if you hurry your interview forward to this autumn.
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History Grad 59
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(Original post by JohanGRK)
You haven't misunderstood it at all - I was just thinking of a certain category of firm that isn't represented in the list you provided: https://www.lawcareers.net/Solicitor...nes#disclaimer. Keep in mind that the page defaults to 'all TCs', which include 2021.

There are a handful of solid City firms on that list (HSF, HL, DLA), but most City firms have had their 2020 TC deadline pass in July (hence why they're not listed on that page). The rest of the firms seem to be regional/high street affairs.

It's always okay for one to rush a last-minute TC app, but I have to wonder whether someone in your position would be better served by taking a step back, and applying for both vac schemes and TCs for 2021. It's only a year's difference, and you'll have a much stronger application if you interview next summer than if you hurry your interview forward to this autumn.
Thanks for that, I think that’s actually really good advice. I did notice that the major firms did have their deadlines close.
I will have to have a think and good research on my options for 2020, really. I’ve noted a number of law firms I like the look of, but maybe waiting a year and being able to apply for the big guns could prove fruitful. I think given I haven’t studied a law degree, just the conversion, maybe a year out paralegalling would do me good and would better prepare me for a law career. Plenty to think about, I’m so annoyed that I let this go by!
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amvns
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(Original post by History Grad 59)
Hi there,

As the title, and my name, suggests, I’ve just graduated with a history degree and have got onto a GDL course. I thought I was really well prepared for the future and have undertaken a few lots of work experience this summer to prepare me for next year.

Then today as I was leaving one of these work experience things someone asked who my training contract was with and that there was a two year wait for some Training Contracts - I’ve since looked up the deadlines and found out that some deadlines to apply for 2020 (after I hopefully finish my GDL and LPC) have already closed, as have some even for 2021. I have yet to apply for any training contracts.

I’m aware that these are likely only really the very major/in demand or very locally sourced (school schemes etc) law firms, but its got me worried. I’m having to pay for this GDL myself because of my complacency and I was wondering if I’ve really left it too late to join some of these firms in 2020.

Tomorrow I’m building a list of application start dates and deadlines, but I’m worried that I may have missed out on a quite a number of firms. Is this application route, through firm websites, the only way to gain training contracts? If I attended law fairs or called up firms and spoke to recruitment staff could I still wriggle my way in?
Hi, I am a 2nd year history student that is thinking of a career in law. I really need help understanding the whole process of things. Can I please private message you?
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J-SP
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There will be firms recruiting for 2020. It’s just the bigger players in the market that recruit so far in advance, and even they sometimes do top up recruitment.

Having a year out and not starting until 2021 isn’t a big deal though. You might need the time to give you the ability to research and get your applications up to scratch anyway
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