Tips to launch your legal career

Tips to launch your legal career



I attended the Lincoln’s Inn Law tutors forum recently and there was plenty of discussion about what students can do to launch a legal career in a competitive job market. Here are the main pieces of advice I took away from the session.


1.    Be aware of the impact of the Legal Education and Training Review and be open to new opportunities.

There was a good hour long interaction on the implications of the Legal Education and Training  Review, led by Stephen Mayson – a former visiting professor at NLS. One message that emerged was that a lot of legal work in the future will be in areas that may not be regulated and controlled by the traditional professions. Students need to be more aware of these possibilities and look for legal work in different sectors, as opportunities in the traditional professions may be less plentiful.


2.    Gain practical skills

 We discussed the importance of skills. The profession actively look at what students can do, as well as what they know. It’s vital to gain relevant work experience to demonstrate this.


3.    Be personable

 The professions are looking for people who will be effective practitioners and they are also serious about diversity. This is as much about personality as academic knowledge.


 4. Take advantage of educational outreach programmes

Many organisations offer educational opportunities for students interested in law and if they don’t – ask! One example is Lincoln’s Inn and  Jo Robinson – the education manager at the Inn –is keen to have promising students up for the day to show them the ropes. Get in contact.


5.    Join an Inn if you want to be a barrister

 If you are a potential barrister, you need to join an Inn and dine as often as possible to make those important connections and network.


6.    Aspiring barristers should also apply for Inn’s scholarships

The other key point is that intending barristers need to apply for the various scholarships the Inns offer – they are awarded on criteria similar to those used by chambers in selecting for pupillage, so as well as being financially valuable they are a good pointer to success in pupillage.


by John Hodgson
Nottingham Law School

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