Being in my final year, the pressure is definitely on to find work after Law School – but don’t lose hope! In Week 9, the Notre Dame Sydney Law Society is bringing back ‘Careers Week’ for 2021! With presentations from some of Sydney’s top law firms running between April 26 – May 5; Careers Week could be the perfect opportunity for you to jump start your career.
It can be pretty daunting attending Careers events in the early stages of your degree, but don’t fret, the NDSLS have thought of everyone! We hope that Careers Week will be able to assist you by helping you to realise your own interests in the law, learning firsthand about practical legal experience, and enabling you to network until your heart’s desire!
This year, the NDSLS is grateful to have SIX firms who have volunteered to present to Notre Dame Law Students, sharing their knowledge of the profession and sharing practical tips to help you land that dream job you’ve been looking for. Make sure to ask about taking the next step in your career, exploring employment, clerkship and graduate opportunities!
Four events will be in held person (including a visit to Ashurst in Martin Place!) – so if you have been missing social interaction, be ready to make the most out of these experiences! Don’t worry if you are not on campus (or enjoy staying at home in your pyjamas*) two events will be held over Zoom!
Paige’s Top Tips to Make the Most Out of Careers Week!
Paige Gavenlock-Ginns, our fabulous Careers Director, has put together 5 tips to help you make the most of Careers Week and progress in your career journey!
Before you attend any of the careers presentations during Careers Week, you should take a moment to consider what issues you are passionate about, which courses that you have enjoyed studying, and which areas of law really interest you. Understanding your interests will help you to think more practically about how they can translate into a future employment opportunity - ensuring that you love what you do. And you know what they say: If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life!
We all do enough research during law school, but I highly encourage you to do the same research when it comes to your career. You should research all of the firms that are presenting. This will help you to gain a deeper understanding of the type of work they do, the culture of the firm, their processes for clerkships and much more. By having a prior understanding of the firm, you will be able to focus on the key takeaway points, and impress the presenters with your knowledge of the firm!
3. Ask Questions!
Throughout your research you might have complied a list of questions, or they might just come to you on the day. I suggest you have a list of questions that you would like to ask, and to bring a notepad to the presentations so you can jot down anything that comes to mind. It is essential to ask questions in order to clarify anything you are unsure about and to find out more information that will help you in your career journey. You should ask practical questions that are relevant to the firm presenting, that cannot be answered on their website, to show your enthusiasm and interest in developing your legal career!
4. Be Engaging!
This tip applies to both online and in person careers presentations. These firms are volunteering their time and insider tips, so it is important to show your appreciation and interest by engaging with the presentation and joining in on discussions. This can be through sitting towards the front of the room, having your camera on during online presentations and sticking around to ask follow up questions. Also don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! You can make the first move by introducing yourself and seeing what opportunities are available for you, whether you are in first year or fifth year - there is no harm in asking!
5. Make the Most of This Experience!
As the Careers Director, it is my aim to ensure all Notre Dame Law Students have access to invaluable opportunities to further their career. Careers Week is undoubtedly one of the greatest opportunities to do so on the NDSLS calendar. This year we have six wonderful firms who are volunteering their time to come and assist you! So make the most of the opportunity by coming along to as many events as possible and make this the start of your career journey!
If anyone would like any further information on the presentations that are happening during Careers Week, or would just like to chat Careers, feel free to reach out to Paige at Careers@ndsls.org!
I’d like to give a special shoutout to Paige Gavenlock-Ginns for her contribution to this post!
*NB. The NDSLS advises that you don’t attend Careers Presentations on Zoom in your pyjamas!
About the Author
Alicia is studying her fifth year of a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Arts (Applied Psychology). In addition to her position on the NDSLS as Education Director, Alicia has a passion for reading, rules, and roses.