Happy New Year!

Hi all. Sorry to have not been in touch for a while, the GDL certainly keeps you busy although that is no excuse as we did get a nice opportunity to relax over Christmas! I managed to squeeze in a trip to Amsterdam, eat and drink in very festive quantities, as well as catch up with friends and family. We had plenty of time post-New Year before term kicked off again, although this was definitely best spent consolidating what we have learnt so far as we are already way over halfway through all of the material and there is not much time to stop and take it all in as you go.

Unfortunately I couldn’t attend the Christmas party that A&O kindly put on for the future trainees; however Imogen, a friend of mine from class, has written a little paragraph for you all to quell any of your burning curiosity:

“Allen and Overy have continued to involve us with the firm, hosting a Future Trainee’s Christmas Dinner on 12th December. It was an extremely enjoyable evening. All of the future trainees were very friendly and it was a fantastic opportunity to meet some non-GDL’ers. The Christmas inspired food was a hit, especially the dessert tower! Entertainment came in the form of a quiz – can you identify the law firm from a picture of its offices? We may not be working in the office yet, but Allen and Overy are doing their best to make us feel like part of the firm.”

I have been thinking back to before Christmas just to update you all, where we had to submit our first piece of work (a 2,000 word informal coursework). This is part of a Unit called Preparing for Practice, designed to get us researching areas of law we are not otherwise taught, as well as working on how to present legal research in a report form. Alternatively, you can choose to do an essay question as many people who have done Arts degrees feel more comfortable with this format; however I decided to produce a research report as I thought this would be more akin to what is expected of us once we start as trainees. You are eased in gently by conducting the research in groups within your class for this first informal piece of work, and we were given written feedback to set us up for our current assignment, which is the first of two formal courseworks (i.e. they actually count – I think this one is worth about 8%). After whizzing through so much material on various areas of law, it is surprisingly refreshing to be given the independence to delve into your chosen topic area for your coursework, but make sure you pick a topic that interests you!

I will be in touch very soon with a separate post about the coming change Allen & Overy has made to switch to BPP as opposed to the University of Law as their GDL/LPC provider.

Good luck to anyone making applications for 2014!