The Official Vacation Scheme Thread 2019! Watch

ManchesterApp
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Hey Guys,

Since winter vacation schemes are upon us I thought I'd make this thread so we can discuss and help each other out. Surprised this wasn't made yet, last year's thread kicked off a month earlier than now, well we're just as eager this year! Please feel free to share your thoughts on here.

I'm starting to prepare for my winter applications for Kennedys, HSF, & Linklaters too.

I feel more confident & organised from the experiences I gained last cycle and I was told about getinlaw.com towards the end of the last cycle which really helped so I'm using them now from the start. I also think Lex100 is a lifesaver. Anyone else want to share alternative platforms?

Thanks and good luck to all!
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ES123456
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I sat down this morning to start the prep for applications and I'm also surprised this hasn't been made sooner! I'm feeling more ready this year - more experience to talk about so fingers crossed.Where I'm stuck is that I don't really know which firms to go for/if i'm aiming too high. How did everyone figure out what level of firm to focus on?
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TCinTraining
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(Original post by ES123456)
I sat down this morning to start the prep for applications and I'm also surprised this hasn't been made sooner! I'm feeling more ready this year - more experience to talk about so fingers crossed.Where I'm stuck is that I don't really know which firms to go for/if i'm aiming too high. How did everyone figure out what level of firm to focus on?
Well, I use various websites to look at entry requirements and reviews (True Picture by Chambers Student is good), including the website of the firm: they usually say which students they go for or just ask for career advice from third-party services.
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Edminzodo
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Hi there! I'm about to start my 3rd Year of a non-law degree and not sure if I should apply straight to TCs or go with VSs. Is there anyone else in the same position?
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ManchesterApp
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(Original post by Edminzodo)
Hi there! I'm about to start my 3rd Year of a non-law degree and not sure if I should apply straight to TCs or go with VSs. Is there anyone else in the same position?
(Original post by TCinTraining)
Well, I use various websites to look at the calibre of candidates firms get (True Picture by Chambers Student is good), including the website of the firm: they usually say which students they go for or just ask for career advice from third-party services.
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(a) I was in a similar situation to you and I was advised by some training contract consultancy (getinlaw.com) to do both but to focus more on VS for my primary firms of choice. They said it would be extremely beneficial for us to gain more experience and exposure to the legal field and so would be wise to do VS apps for our main firms and leave TC apps until later and for the firms that aren't on paper our number one choices per-se.

(b) Yeh definitely in terms of assessing what firms to go for I was also advised to just go back to basics and look at which firms I really want: area of law, size and location, entry requirements etc. then come to a reasonable conclusion about which to invest my time in and apply to.

hope this is useful guys.
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Edminzodo
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(Original post by ManchesterApp)
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(a) I was in a similar situation to you and engaged Getinlaw.com and they advised me to do both but to focus more on VS for my primary firms of choice. They said it would be extremely beneficial for us to gain more experience and exposure to the legal field and so would be wise to do VS apps for our main firms and leave TC apps until later and for the firms that aren't on paper our number one choices per-se.

(b) Yeh definitely in terms of assessing what firms to go for I was also advised to just go back to basics and look at which firms I really want: area of law, size and location then look at other successful candidates on lex100, All about law etc. then come to a reasonable conclusion about which to invest my time in and apply to.

hope this is useful guys.
Thanks so much, that's really useful!
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UKTC99
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How does everyone practice for Watson Glazer tests?
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TCinTraining
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(Original post by UKTC99)
How does everyone practice for Watson Glazer tests?
Just go on google and search Watson Glaser practice tests. Also, use SHL practice verbal reasoning tests, they are all built round the same concept and so practising different versions just gives you a more rounded and sharper understanding of such questions.
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laurenlodge
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(Original post by Edminzodo)
Hi there! I'm about to start my 3rd Year of a non-law degree and not sure if I should apply straight to TCs or go with VSs. Is there anyone else in the same position?
Hi - this was me except I waited to apply until I finished as I was super slow off the mark!

As a non-law student I was advised to definitely go for VS - as people who tend to have less law related work exp, it's less risk for the firm to take us on for a week and see what we're like versus giving a TC out. Plus it's a great head-start if you decide you want to apply back to that firm for a TC, and/or can lead to skipping some steps in the TC process if you do well. Even if it doesn't go anywhere, it's great & recognised experience for your CV. I picked up my TC through a firm I had a VS at and my other offer said it was a big factor in offering, so I'd really recommend as a route.

I couldn't find any up to date stats on which firms were more likely to recruit from their VS, but looking through the 2019/2020 TC threads is useful - people tend to pick up through the grapevine/app feedback if firms have recruited totally from VS students. I tried to target those who took a lot of VS students on - not an exact science but can be a useful steer.

I found some places let you do both applications from one, if that makes sense which was a big timesaver!
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TCinTraining
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(Original post by lauralodge)
Hi - this was me except I waited to apply until I finished as I was super slow off the mark!

As a non-law student I was advised to definitely go for VS - as people who tend to have less law related work exp, it's less risk for the firm to take us on for a week and see what we're like versus giving a TC out. Plus it's a great head-start if you decide you want to apply back to that firm for a TC, and/or can lead to skipping some steps in the TC process if you do well. Even if it doesn't go anywhere, it's great & recognised experience for your CV. I picked up my TC through a firm I had a VS at and my other offer said it was a big factor in offering, so I'd really recommend as a route.

I couldn't find any up to date stats on which firms were more likely to recruit from their VS, but looking through the 2019/2020 TC threads is useful - people tend to pick up through the grapevine/app feedback if firms have recruited totally from VS students. I tried to target those who took a lot of VS students on - not an exact science but can be a useful steer.

I found some places let you do both applications from one, if that makes sense which was a big timesaver!
Squire Patton Boggs, Mishcon De Reya recruit exclusively through their VS whilst others like Vinson & Elkins, FBD, Gibson Dunn, Skadden recruit predominantly from their VS. Try using lawcareers.net / getinlaw.com / allaboutlaw.com for really sound application advice, they helped me loads last term to be honest.

I have one assessment left for this term (with Eversheds Sutherland) so let's see what happens.
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laurenlodge
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(Original post by TCinTraining)
Squire Patton Boggs, Mishcon De Reya recruit exclusively through their VS whilst others like Vinson & Elkins, FBD, Gibson Dunn, Skadden recruit predominantly from their VS. Try using Getinlaw.com and lawcareers.net for really sound application advice, they helped me loads last term to be honest.

I have one assessment left for this term (with Eversheds Sutherland) so let's see what happens.
Thanks! I'm not needing to do any more applications so will tag the original asker in so they can benefit

(Original post by Edminzodo)
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Edminzodo
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(Original post by lauralodge)
Hi - this was me except I waited to apply until I finished as I was super slow off the mark!

As a non-law student I was advised to definitely go for VS - as people who tend to have less law related work exp, it's less risk for the firm to take us on for a week and see what we're like versus giving a TC out. Plus it's a great head-start if you decide you want to apply back to that firm for a TC, and/or can lead to skipping some steps in the TC process if you do well. Even if it doesn't go anywhere, it's great & recognised experience for your CV. I picked up my TC through a firm I had a VS at and my other offer said it was a big factor in offering, so I'd really recommend as a route.

I couldn't find any up to date stats on which firms were more likely to recruit from their VS, but looking through the 2019/2020 TC threads is useful - people tend to pick up through the grapevine/app feedback if firms have recruited totally from VS students. I tried to target those who took a lot of VS students on - not an exact science but can be a useful steer.

I found some places let you do both applications from one, if that makes sense which was a big timesaver!
(Original post by TCinTraining)
Squire Patton Boggs, Mishcon De Reya recruit exclusively through their VS whilst others like Vinson & Elkins, FBD, Gibson Dunn, Skadden recruit predominantly from their VS. Try using Getinlaw.com and lawcareers.net for really sound application advice, they helped me loads last term to be honest.

I have one assessment left for this term (with Eversheds Sutherland) so let's see what happens.
Thank you both so much! Good luck with your assessment, TCinTraining!
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TCinTraining
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(Original post by Edminzodo)
Thank you both so much! Good luck with your assessment, TCinTraining!
No problem and thank you. What firms are you preparing to apply for, if you don't mind me asking? I'm thinking maybe Osborne Clarke, but I heard they want versatile trainees to move around offices.
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Edminzodo
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(Original post by TCinTraining)
No problem and thank you. What firms are you preparing to apply for, if you don't mind me asking? I'm thinking maybe Osborne Clarke, but I heard they want versatile trainees to move around offices.
Slaughter and May, HSF, Pinsent Masons, maybe Shoosmiths, too. I have quite a long list but am narrowing them down to about 6 at the moment. Are you thinking of any others?
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laurenlodge
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(Original post by Edminzodo)
Slaughter and May, HSF, Pinsent Masons, maybe Shoosmiths, too. I have quite a long list but am narrowing them down to about 6 at the moment. Are you thinking of any others?
I'm starting at one of these in 2020 and did a VS with them too - am super paranoid about saying which on the off chance they google themselves but PM me, I'll let you know and then happy to help if I can
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ES123456
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(Original post by laurenlodge)
I'm starting at one of these in 2020 and did a VS with them too - am super paranoid about saying which on the off chance they google themselves but PM me, I'll let you know and then happy to help if I can
Hey! I'm looking to apply for some of these firms as well can I ask you a few questions about your VS and application?
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TCinTraining
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(Original post by Edminzodo)
Slaughter and May, HSF, Pinsent Masons, maybe Shoosmiths, too. I have quite a long list but am narrowing them down to about 6 at the moment. Are you thinking of any others?
Hey, nice choice. I'm thinking HFW, Stephenson Harwood, Dentons, K&L Gates, AG, Mills & Reeve, and maybe even PWC. Likewise, I'm also in the process of narrowing them down.
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J-SP
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(Original post by ES123456)
I sat down this morning to start the prep for applications and I'm also surprised this hasn't been made sooner! I'm feeling more ready this year - more experience to talk about so fingers crossed.Where I'm stuck is that I don't really know which firms to go for/if i'm aiming too high. How did everyone figure out what level of firm to focus on?
I wouldn’t think about it in terms of calibre. I’d be thinking more about whether the individual firm was right for me. Seems a bit mental grouping firms together in terms of some form of perceived status and then eliminating some of them based on myths, the rumour mill and your own self confidence rather than anything factual.
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lawstudent19971
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Hi everyone! Apart from JD and Kennedys, are there any other law firms open for vac schemes? Thanks
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TCapplicant92
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(Original post by J-SP)
I wouldn’t think about it in terms of calibre. I’d be thinking more about whether the individual firm was right for me. Seems a bit mental grouping firms together in terms of some form of perceived status and then eliminating some of them based on myths, the rumour mill and your own self confidence rather than anything factual.
I understand your point of view, but managing expectations isn't ''mental''. For e.g. I knew someone who had 2.2 in a non-law degree and a pass at GDL without much legal experience, but found that Magic Circle were the right fit for them, yet three cycles later and they still weren't getting passed the application form stage despite their really good answers - in those situations it makes sense to pragmatically look at the facts and assess the merits of the firm with your own and take it from there. But I agree, it's all about choosing the right firm you want to work for and the firm you holistically fit in with.
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