By Rosie Allan
When looking to apply for a summer internship, Turcan Connell stood out to me primarily due to my interest in private client work and with its great market reputation I thought"what better place to gain some experience?" I felt a six week internship would be a good length of time to get a real feel of what it is like to work in a law firm. Adding to this, reading the positive feedback from last years' interns further recommended it to me.
After the relatively straightforward online application came the interview which was daunting at first, but I was soon made to feel at ease by my interviewers, who seemed genuinely interested to hear a bit about me as a person. I was delighted when I was then offered a Summer Internship.
Arriving at the firm on my first day I was definitely a little nervous - mostly because I didn't know what to expect having never worked in a law firm before or indeed even an office. The initial training days however, proved a good opportunity to get used to the environment and being the only intern from Aberdeen – a good opportunity to spend some time with my fellow interns. After the two days of training we separated off into our different teams around the office. I was delighted to find out that I would be the first ever family law intern – an area of law which I found particularly interesting to study. I was very keen to find out how the theory relates in practice. Within the family law team I was assigned two mentors who along with other members of the team, allocate me tasks and although themselves busy, are all very hands on and happy to help when I pester them with questions! There is a weekly meeting in place with my mentors Anna and Jenny where we discuss workload, how I am getting on and any improvements which could be made.
Although getting to grips with office protocols takes time, I have definitely experienced a great deal in my first two weeks. From team meetings, to carrying out phone calls and receiving dictation training (a vital skill for lawyers that I was unaware of before my internship) I have been made to feel like a valued member of the team. I have been fortunate to be able to assist the team with case work and attend client meetings to get a real feel for what life as a family lawyer is like – which is certainly busy. On top of this, I frequently undertake the court run delivery to the Sheriff Court and the Court of Session which can certainly provide a welcome break on sunny days, however, initially a challenge for an intern not from Edinburgh!
Something that has stood out to me is the great work/ life balance had by those at Turcan Connell and the willingness of all to include the interns in the social activities organised to make us feel welcome. During our first week we were invited out to drinks with the trainees, an evening rounders match against Turcan Connell Asset Management on the Meadows and also a very impressive Wimbledon themed drinks reception for the retirement of Douglas Connell. During my second week was the 'west wing' night out and a team lunch. This week is the annual summer barbecue and I am very much looking forward to competing in the gladiator competition that will take place at the event.