Traineeships

Brodies’ second year trainees will qualify as Solicitors on 29 July. As they approach the final four weeks of their traineeship, we’ve asked a few in the group to look back at the past two years and give us a flavour of their highs and lows, as well as tips for any new trainees starting this summer. Stephanie Barratt is first up.

Give us a general overview of your traineeship:

My first seat was in the Litigation department within the Personal Injury team based in Glasgow. This was a great first seat and gave me exposure to a range of cases from road traffic accidents to medical negligence. The highlight of this seat for me was the people – I was really lucky to be part of a close-knit team who made me feel right at home and dedicated time and effort to teaching me about personal injury, litigation generally and the inner workings of the firm.

I then moved on to our Corporate team in Glasgow. Moving from a litigation to a transactional seat was a big change and allowed me to develop other skills such as drafting and project management. I also got involved with large scale completions for prestigious clients which I found very exciting.

My final seat was in the Real Estate department in Edinburgh where I was part of a small team that covered both English and Scottish law. Again, I consider myself to be very lucky to be part of a team that was enthusiastic about training me and giving me great exposure to high-value transactions.

What’s been the high point?

Honestly, I’ve enjoyed my entire traineeship and looking back on it now, I am amazed at how much I have learned and how far I have come. If I had to narrow it down, it would probably either be seeing an article I wrote published in The Journal, or being very surprised at how much I enjoyed working in the Real Estate department having not liked property law very much (at all) on the LLB and diploma.

What’s been the low point?

Not a low point exactly, but I guess there have been a couple of periods where I have been very busy – at the time that can feel like a low point. The funny thing is though, once the work has calmed down and you look back on the busy period, you get a sense of pride in what you have achieved and realise how much you have learned.

What was your first day like?

A total whirlwind. I think I was introduced to the entire floor and panicked because I couldn’t remember anyone’s name or where the bathroom was! As soon as I met the team though, I knew that everything would be fine.

Any amusing moments?

There have been a fair few (usually at my expense!). The most recent was probably running up to the Cashroom in a hurry to sort something out for a completion and getting locked in the stairwell… I was there for a good ten minutes before I was set free by a passer-by. Moral of the story, always bring your key card with you in the Glasgow office!

What’s next for you?

I am absolutely delighted to be qualifying into the Professional Negligence team in the Litigation department at the end of July.

What advice would you give to future trainees?

I’m a great believer in “the more effort you put into something, the more you get in return”, so my best advice would be just to roll up your sleeves and get stuck in to your traineeship. Try and enjoy the work you are doing and seek out opportunities for new and exciting work that interests you. If you find an area you are really passionate about, you are 99% of the way there. The same goes for the social side of the traineeship, get involved with the nights out, lunches, firm events and networking.

Stephanie Barratt
Stephanie Barratt

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