I have been employed as a solicitor apprenticeship with ITV’s in-house legal department for six months. I applied for the apprenticeship because I wanted to gain valuable practical legal experience as well as getting the necessary qualifications to become a fully qualified solicitor.
This apprenticeship appealed to me, as I would be doing real legal work, whilst also studying for my law degree. This structure is hugely beneficial, as most students will leave full time university with little or no work experience, and I will leave as a fully qualified lawyer, with 6 years’ experience and no university debt.
Before taking up the apprenticeship I had briefly considered a full time law degree. However I decided that this was not the route for me, as I wanted to challenge myself to take on practical work early on in my career as well as studying, as I believe that practical experience is just as important as the qualifications. I was also eager to experience the world of work and start building my career as early as possible.
The Solicitor Apprenticeship has exceeded my expectations. I have already been given countless opportunities and been involved in lots of exciting projects. I have been given a high level of independence and responsibility when it comes to legal work and the team are supportive of my study needs. The student resources and support services are extremely helpful and both the CILEx Law School and City Law School websites, which host the study resources, are easy to navigate and very user friendly.
Balancing work, study and a social life is challenging, but the rewards outweigh the challenges. This is a great way to learn the skill of time management, as you have to handle work deadlines alongside essay deadlines.
I am currently working in the Commercial and Marketing Legal Affairs team at ITV. My team are very supportive of my career goals and of the apprenticeship route. During the six-year period of the apprenticeship I will spend time in all of ITV’s legal departments as well as spending a year at Slaughter and May and Arnold Porter, so I will gain masses of experience in lots of different fields of law.
I love the work I am doing at the moment. My day to day jobs include drafting legal documents, such as non-disclosure agreements, airtime and sponsorship contracts, as well as carrying out routine checks on contracts. It is interesting to learn the process of how the sponsorship of a programme, or how advertising a product works from a legal perspective, and it is rewarding to see the end result of your work on the TV at home.
The benefits of undertaking an apprenticeship are that you gain legal work experience as well as gaining the qualifications necessary to further your career. This helps for you to become a well-rounded legal professional and it gives you experiences that other law students may not get. Also, you complete the apprenticeship fully qualified with no university debt, a benefit that very few people have!
I would definitely recommend a Solicitor Apprenticeship to anybody who is committed to a career in law and wants to challenge themselves to achieve as much as they can. My apprenticeship has offered me more than I ever expected, so I have had the best start to my career.