Why did you choose an apprenticeship instead of university?
"The opportunity of being able to work towards becoming a competent paralegal through the completion of an apprenticeship with a leading law firm greatly appealed to me. The apprenticeship provides me a hands-on learning experience allowing me to gain a wide ranging and varied skills set through being mentored and supported by a team of solicitors. I will gain a recognised Level 3 paralegal qualification which will aid me in to my progression to eventually qualifying as a solicitor, whilst at the same time earning a salary and being debt free from university!" Aimee Haden, Paralegal Apprentice
What do you enjoy most about the apprenticeship?
"What do I enjoy most? Where do I start? The apprenticeship has lived up to everything and more that I was expecting! I love working in the Clinical Negligence department because it is the area of Law that keeps me interested the most. There is always something new and not all cases are the same, so you never know what to expect. The part I enjoy most is having the opportunity to go to Court hearings and Conferences and following cases as they progress through the litigation timeline. My initial thought about the role was that I would be more of an admin role doing the photocopying, scanning e.c.t. but it is far from that! I have been getting so much more involved in cases and feel like my role is taken seriously and I get to draft documents that a lot of Trainee Solicitors would be expected to do." Samantha Ross, Paralegal Apprentice
What is it like working in law?
"Working in law is very rewarding as your hard work does not go unrecognised. I have many important responsibilities such as keeping abreast of recent case law that will have a pertinent effect upon the professional roles of the lawyers I work with as well as our clients. I am often asked to carry out the following tasks in my role:
- draft legal documents and advices;
- analyse initial records and provide a summary to the fee earner inclusive of the risks and main issues that arise;
- research the law and apply it to case specific questions;
- liaise with other legal professionals (such as court officers and other parties);
- attend legal meetings; and
- to take part in training opportunities and business development tasks.
My colleagues are very supportive and I am constantly learning new things every day." Laura Pearce, Paralegal Apprentice
How do you find balancing work and study?
"The balance between work and study is extremely generous. We are entitled to one day's study leave a week where you can focus solely on studying. So far, the balance is fine and I am managing my work and study time very well in preparation for my first exam. I always know that if I wasn't coping with the balance, I have a supportive team who can ensure I keep on top of all my work/studying and the firm is a pleasure to work for." Samantha Ross, Paralegal Apprentice
Our apprenticeship programme saw legal executive Michelle Blackwell win the Higher/Degree Apprenticeship of the Year (West Midlands) at the National Apprenticeship Awards 2018.