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The University of Southampton
Southampton Law School

Southampton Law School Employability Skills Programme 2017

Published: 10 February 2017

This unique annual programme of careers and employability events took place in the School of Law in late January.

The two week programme, intended primarily for second year students, incorporated 40 different workshops and presentations. The programme aims to develop key skills through workshops on client care, time management, client interviewing and advanced legal research skills as well as giving students an insight into the wide range of legal and non-legal careers open to them as graduates of the School of Law.

For those interested in pursuing a legal career, there were presentations on the Human Rights Bar, the Law Commission and working as an in-house, employment and government lawyer. Students were also able to find out about the work of Notaries, Trade Mark Attorneys and Senior Civil Servants.

A key aspect of the programme is the opportunity to meet and network with partners, associates and trainees as well as the recruitment team from global and regional law firms, chambers and other global organisations. The contacts which students make lead to positive outcomes in their applications for vacation schemes, training contracts and graduate programmes.

One of the highlights of the programme for many students is the opportunity to visits courts and tribunals in Southampton and Winchester where they sit with the judges and are often invited to their chambers to discuss legal issues arising from the cases they have heard.

Another very popular activity is the visit to the law firm, Shoosmiths where students get an in-depth insight into a national firm and find out how they can maximise their chances of joining the Shoosmiths team.

One of the most important features of the programme is the participation of Alumni whose contributions are invaluable. 21 of the speakers ranging from senior partners to associates and trainees are graduates of the School of Law. This year we were delighted to welcome for the first time, Gareth Davies, Legal Counsel from the Bank of England and Scott Stemp, a planning and environment barrister from no 5 Chambers.

The feedback received from the programme has been very positive.

“I'm huge fan of the employability week. I think it's something that sets Southampton University apart from other universities. In all my travels I don't see anyone else with quite the focus that you do” (Sam Lee, Head of Recruitment, Bond Dickinson)

“I was lucky to be able to sit in on a really interesting case. Additionally I had the opportunity to speak to prosecuting barrister and this was excellent. He provided us with invaluable information and was really nice”

“Ended up going to court the second day after being invited back by the judge to listen to the defendant give his statement in a criminal law proceeding”

“The time management presentation was the highlight of the past two weeks, an amazing presentation with lots of tips and information”

“I wasn't interested in becoming a barrister but this presentation changed my mind. It was very helpful!”

“An extremely insightful day, very interactive and informative. It was the first opportunity I had to visit a law firm's office, and it was helpful to network with a variety of the people who worked there, from paralegals and trainees to partners.”

“Really good session! Learned more about the interview process and how to be a bit more confident.”

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