De Jure Chambers has partnered with the Anglia Ruskin University Foundation to offer internships to the university’s law students. Paul Chiy, the principal of De Jure Chambers, says, ‘We are delighted to partner with our local university in supporting young graduates gain the experience to access the profession.’ The internship has already been very successful, with several ARU graduates currently working at De Jure Chambers, and we hope this relationship will continue to grow.
When Angelica Botta graduated from Anglia Ruskin University, she quickly found the job market to be extremely over-saturated. ‘You apply for job after job and you get endless rejections back, if they do get back to you at all,’ she said. ‘It can be disheartening. Nobody really says it, but at a lot of places it seems to be a lot more about who you know rather than what you know. I just wanted an opportunity to prove I could do it, as much to myself as to anyone else.’ She decided to use her university’s employability support network, and on their list of temporary vacancies found an eight-week Legal Administrator internship at De Jure Chambers. It looked like her opportunity had finally come: she applied successfully for the internship, and after the eight weeks was up she was given a one-year contract. This April she was promoted to Senior Paralegal after only five months working at the firm.
What makes the De Jure internship different from other work experience programs? According to Angelica, ‘the difference is that work experience is normally just reading documents, but with DeJure, I joined on Monday and had my first client on Tuesday. I had to find a solution. I had to learn how to draft documents, how to draft contracts, how to deal with the client, how to do my administration – I had to figure it all out straight away. That’s the difference, you don’t just observe other people doing the work, you do the work yourself right from the outset.’ In this way, the internship actually equips people for effective preparation for a career in law. When asked how the internship had helped her, Angelica said, ‘Quite frankly, it gave me a career. I was working at Debenhams at the time I started at De Jure. If it wasn’t for the internship I would probably still be in retail.’ This is because at De Jure Chambers we don’t value who you know, we value what you know. The internship gives brilliant people the opportunity to pursue their ambition.
De Jure Chambers is a progressive law firm committed to helping create a fairer society, whether that’s through supporting the development of our local communities, making sure high quality legal services are affordable for everyone and not just large corporations, or, as here, finding ways to level out the playing field and make this industry accessible to all new graduates.
The Anglia Ruskin University Foundation aims to advance the education of students attending the university through financing the provision of any facilities not normally provided to students.
De Jure Chambers has offices at 5 Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1LG, and F21 Stirling House, Waterbeach, Cambridge CB25 9QE.