The subject of this latest interview is Hannah Tyson, a first-year trainee at a general private practice.
Hannah talks about her legal career so far and gives her advice for anyone who is looking to follow in her footsteps.
1. Why did you decide you wanted to become a solicitor? When did you make the decision?
I made the decision early on at Secondary School having completed work experience at a firm of high street solicitors. I wanted a successful and rewarding career which would continually challenge me throughout my career. I was also attracted to the fact that the law touches every aspect of life and I wanted to be a part of that.
2. What academic route did you take to become a trainee? Would you do it differently if you had your time again? What academic grades have you achieved from A-Levels to date?
I completed my A-Levels and gained grades ABB. I did an LLB (Hons) degree at Lancaster University and gaining a 2.1. I then attended Huddersfield University for my Legal Practice Course. I achieved a commendation and prizes for best family law and conveyancing student.
I may have attended a more local university for my LLB (Hons) to draw on the support from family and friends.
3. How did you fund your legal studies? Were you in debt at the end of them? If so, how much? (optional)
I took out a student loan and my parents were kind enough to help me out.
4. What sort of firm/organisation are you training at?
A multi-jurisdictional law firm providing a range of litigation and legal property services for a variety of business sectors throughout England, Wales and Scotland.
5. When did you secure your training contract? How many applications did you make and how many interviews did you have?
I secured my training contract 18 months after completing the Legal Practice Course. I made approximately 60 applications over 24 months and attended 5 interviews
6. Before securing your training contract did you gain any work experience within the legal profession? If so, what?
I worked at a local high street firm throughout my school holidays and during my free periods at sixth form.
I worked within the firm I am currently employed at for 18 months prior to securing my training contract.
7. What’s the best thing and the worst thing about studying law?
The best element is reaping the rewards from your hard work. It is a fantastic degree to gain and keeps you on your toes. I would say the worst element is the volume of work.
8. What sort of career, and work, do you intend to pursue after your training contract?
I hope I continue to be employed after my training contract but to be honest I am not sure yet. I am hoping things become clearer after completing more of my training seats.
9. What advice would you give to someone considering studying and training to become a solicitor? Is there anything else you would like to add?
- Make sure you are 100% committed to hard work. You will be successful if you are willing to work hard and persevere during hard times.
- Gain the best academic grades you can. The competition for training contracts is hard enough without trying with a poor degree.
- Work within teams – bounce ideas off each other and provide support to your peers
- Gain experience within a legal firm. Even if it is making tea and photocopying- it makes you look committed to the legal world.
- Get used to reading! Keep it interesting by reading from a range of sources.
*If you are a law student, trainee solicitor or solicitor who would like to be interviewed for the Trainee Solicitor Surgery website please get in touch using the Contact Us form.