University of Birmingham for magic circle?

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Anonymous #1
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Title is pretty self explanatory but would you say UoB is good for magic circle firms.

Also, is Nottingham Trent good for city firms?
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999tigger
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Why not ask careers or the department and go on to see which ones of their graduates made it to MC?
What A level grades do you have?
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SarcAndSpark
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Moved to the legal careers sub-forum where hopefully you'll get some replies from people in the know.
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aspiringlawyerNW
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Title is pretty self explanatory but would you say UoB is good for magic circle firms.

Also, is Nottingham Trent good for city firms?
Are you asking CAN you go from Birmingham to a MC firm, or can YOU go from Birmingham to a MC firm? If it's the former, people have and do. If it's the latter, that would depend on you.
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skanta479
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Definitely definitely possible. I know plenty of people who are at MC firms from Birmingham. Nottingham Trent - none. If a career in city law is what you’re after, head to Birmingham. The way I see it:

1) Oxbridge
2) UCL, KCL, Durham, LSE, Warwick
3) Nottingham, UoB, Exeter etc
4) Other Russell Group
5) Everywhere else

Group 1 with average academics will usually get an interview. Same with group 2 but perhaps the academic standard required will be a couple of marks higher. Group 3 will need something sparkly - a first class honours, a great internship, position of responsibility etc. But they’re in with an excellent shot. Group 4 have to pull it out the bag, network hard, stand out etc. Group 5 rarely if ever have a chance without an LLM/Msc from a uni in then tiers above. Go to Birmingham!
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skanta479
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Varis
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Imagine believing in tiers to feel good about yourself
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skanta479
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(Original post by Varis)
Imagine believing in tiers to feel good about yourself
Just to clarify, I don't 'believe' in tiers for the sake of believing in tiers. I didn't go to either of the top 2 tiers I mentioned. Having been a part of the graduate recruitment process at the silver circle firm I'm at now, I can comfortably tell you that what I'm saying is accurate. I know of not a single person from Nottingham Trent that got even an interview with my firm or any other Silver Circle firms. I'd assume that's true for Magic Circle/US firms too, therefore.

We have, and the MC has, plenty of Birmingham graduates come to train, and they do so relatively easily so long as they have one or two differentiating factors.
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Varis
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(Original post by skanta479)
Just to clarify, I don't 'believe' in tiers for the sake of believing in tiers. I didn't go to either of the top 2 tiers I mentioned. Having been a part of the graduate recruitment process at the silver circle firm I'm at now, I can comfortably tell you that what I'm saying is accurate. I know of not a single person from Nottingham Trent that got even an interview with my firm or any other Silver Circle firms. I'd assume that's true for Magic Circle/US firms too, therefore.

We have, and the MC has, plenty of Birmingham graduates come to train, and they do so relatively easily so long as they have one or two differentiating factors.
I'm not really here to entertain a "discussion" on tiers. As long as it makes you happy and you don't externalise your "advice", then all is good.

Re Nottingham Trent, you should probably LinkedIn harder then. I'm not disagreeing that there are few Nottingham Trent people amongst the Elite US and MC, but if you're going to make such strong statements and weak assumptions based off your perception, at least try a little harder. It is just lazy and unhelpful.
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skanta479
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(Original post by Varis)
I'm not really here to entertain a "discussion" on tiers. As long as it makes you happy and you don't externalise your "advice", then all is good.

Re Nottingham Trent, you should probably LinkedIn harder then. I'm not disagreeing that there are few Nottingham Trent people amongst the Elite US and MC, but if you're going to make such strong statements and weak assumptions based off your perception, at least try a little harder. It is just lazy and unhelpful.
Not at all sure what your hang-up is. What I'm saying is entirely true; I've been through it and am now a part of it.

The question was whether Nottingham Trent or Birmingham for Magic Circle offers:

1) I know 0 trainees at MC/SC/US firms who took an undergrad degree at Nottingham Trent. I know dozens who did the same at Birmingham.

2) I can speak confidently about my firm, one of the biggest providers of training contracts in the City, in that no-one has ever trained here having been to Nottingham Trent for an undergrad.

Why any of the above is controversial is beyond me. If you can provide me an example of one person at a firm closely resembling the Magic Circle on LinkedIn having gone to Nottingham Trent I am happy to concede.

My 'advice' may not sit well within the current climate of 'everyone is equal, it's not about which institution you attended', but it's unfortunately practical, whether you like it or not. Tiers exist, which depending on how you feel may or may not be unfortunate. The guy wants a MC training contract, why advise him to go somewhere that makes it tangibly much more difficult to get there? Oxbridge grads get more interviews, because they tend to be higher quality candidates, and so on down the list. No need to be upset about it!
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skanta479
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1) My point is not unclear. Note I used the word 'usually', not 'always', because I meant the former and not the latter. As a new(er) member of the graduate recruitment process in my firm, I can attest that university name is, again either unfortunately or fortunately, used as a proxy for a candidate's competency. The system is unfairly weighted towards the top of the educational pyramid, where Nottingham Trent falls far lower than the others mentioned (and indeed Birmingham). I am sorry if this offends you, I too wish it were different. An outstanding candidate from Nottingham Trent will find it hard to get an interview, facts. I used the word 'rarely', to indicate that it was, in fact, 'rare', and that I'd never heard of it happening.

2) I have no idea how or why universities' perceived prestige gets higher or lower. Law is like any other profitable industry - it prefers to target the better universities. Because they're better. And therefore they take less of a hiring risk. Simple, really.

3) On sample size and credibility - 1% of trainees this year in the top 130 UK firms came from Nottingham Trent. I nor anyone I have asked since this question was asked has ever heard of a Nottingham Trent grad getting a MC training contract. Why you are continuing to suggest that it is helpful to go to Nottingham Trent over Birmingham speaks volumes. Love and regards as always.
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skanta479
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You’re all mental - the tiers I mentioned aren’t set in stone not are they completely discreet. They are guidelines based on the way firms view these schools. It isn’t complicated. I appreciate why you might not like it but it’s patently absurd to suggest that better unis don’t get better interview opportunities.
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Trapmoneybenny
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I'm inclined to think this as well. The IFS released a report last November about graduate prospects and earnings based on each University. While they of course admitted that going to a university in the higher echelons like a Cambridge or Birmingham would offer much more career networking opportunities. The main reason candidates from said universities (specifically those high in league tables) get into better firms is because they have always been better since they were like 17....hence why they are in the best institutions in the first place.
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aspiringlawyerNW
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I also think that these kinds of comments demean the hard work that students from these higher tiers put in to get these coveted places at MC/SC firms. There are plenty of students who go to Oxbridge and the Golden Triangle Universities who DON'T get those jobs. Which would suggest that even if you are at a top tier University, you still have to put in the same time and effort that everyone else does...
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skanta479
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Have it your way. Go to Nottingham Trent and see how you fare. All universities are equal and will prepare you all equally well for working at a magic circle firm. Is very obvious that none of you have ever experienced graduate recruitment.
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skanta479
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To add - all firms that I know have some sort of policy like this. Certain universities are better than others, and we’re aware of this.
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Trapmoneybenny
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(Original post by skanta479)
Have it your way. Go to Nottingham Trent and see how you fare. All universities are equal and will prepare you all equally well for working at a magic circle firm. Is very obvious that none of you have ever experienced graduate recruitment.
Oh come on.... we all know going to NotTrent would make his road to working in such a firm that much harder/longer or maybe impossible, depending on how gritty he is.

The issue is your comments about the "tiers" of universities. Oxbridge, Birmingham, Nottingham, King's, UCL, LSE (in the same bracket in terms of quality of education imo) and the like are miles ahead of Nottingham Trent, but unless all recruiting lawyers have rods up their arses, no ones gonna discount a Durham/Birmingham/KCL graduate with a 1st that is clearly more polished in favor of a typical Cam grad with a 2:1

Your university only has to be "good enough". If he wanted to work for a let's say...US firm then he'll have no chance in hell, because the yanks only ever care about Oxbridge
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skanta479
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A candidate with exactly the same background, internships and a 2.1 will fare differently if he/she went to Leeds versus Cambridge. It’s a fact. If you go to a lower tier university, you must do more to stand out. Denying this to make people feel better is the worst thing you can do. If you want the best chance of getting an MC TC, go to the best damn university you can.
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aspiringlawyerNW
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(Original post by skanta479)
A candidate with exactly the same background, internships and a 2.1 will fare differently if he/she went to Leeds versus Cambridge. It’s a fact. If you go to a lower tier university, you must do more to stand out. Denying this to make people feel better is the worst thing you can do. If you want the best chance of getting an MC TC, go to the best damn university you can.
It's not as black and white as you make out, is all anybody here is saying. I knew a fair few departing third years at my University (York- not entirely sure where that falls in your tiers...) who got 2:1 and have secured places at MC and SC firms. I can't say with absolute certainty, for obvious reasons, but I would imagine based on numbers of graduating students from the 'top tier' Universities that this means that some of these students have likely secured places over candidates at higher tier Universities with comparable (if not higher) grades. And some of the students I'm referring to weren't exactly all that, based on what I saw of them last year/their online presence.
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skanta479
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(Original post by LpoolLawStudent)
It's not as black and white as you make out, is all anybody here is saying. I knew a fair few departing third years at my University (York- not entirely sure where that falls in your tiers...) who got 2:1 and have secured places at MC and SC firms. I can't say with absolute certainty, for obvious reasons, but I would imagine based on numbers of graduating students from the 'top tier' Universities that this means that some of these students have likely secured places over candidates at higher tier Universities with comparable (if not higher) grades. And some of the students I'm referring to weren't exactly all that, based on what I saw of them last year/their online presence.
Neither are the ‘tiers’ black and white. Of course I didn’t include every single university because I thought it would be obvious to those who read the comments that it wasn’t gospel. Durham, Warwick etc are all on par with the top universities mentioned.

I’ve not the interest in arguing. But what we CAN agree on is that, given the choice (if the ONLY thing that matters is getting a top tier training contract), the advice should always be to go to the best university you can. Of course, some people won’t want to forgo the three ‘best’ years of your life and would rather take a ‘prestige’ hit for the sake of a better time. But if that’s not the case and the question is merely ‘which university is better for me to get an MC TC or similar’, then however you spin it, going to a better one will look more impressive an application than a worse one. I thought that much was obvious!
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