On August 3rd I was entering the Eversheds LLP’s Parisian office to begin my internship. The opportunity of doing an internship in such a big firm was given to me thanks to one of the Principal Associates, one of my parents’ friend. As I am currently a third year law student, I was scared not to meet the expectations of Eversheds. Fortunately, as the days went on I was given the chance to discover a real insight of the every day routine of business lawyers.
I did my internship in the Corporate department of the firm. The first thought I had when I entered the offices was: “Well, Corporate department… Fine, but I have never really studied Corporate Law!” In fact, French law students only discover Corporate Law during their LLB. However no one but me seemed to worry about it.
On the first day, the Director of Human Resources gave me a quick tour of the building. Then after a short IT formation, I went to my office that I shared with a Masters’ 1 student. I rapidly learnt that you must not wait for somebody to give you something to do in a law firm. You have to visit every lawyer in the department, every day and ask them if they need something to be done. And most of the time, it is the case… even if this something is done by an inexperienced student. That is how I gradually got the lawyer’s confidence and how I got a slice of responsibility.
First I started by helping the paralegals. I had to draft reports of boards of directors, Minutes, etc. As a result annual accounts of the financial year of a company have no secrets for me anymore!
Then, and that is what occupied most of my time, I had to do research on a specific subject of Corporate Law. This was a particularly complicated exercise for me as I used to be messy in my research when I had work to do at the University. I definitely can tell now that I learned to go straight to the point. Finally, I had the chance to participate to the weekly meetings of the department in which the Principal Partner does a quick report of the Corporate cases.
To sum up I would say that the most important thing in an internship is to trust yourself… but not too much! There is no shame in asking someone if you are not sure of what you are asked to do, on the contrary.
Those two months in Eversheds were an incredible experience and I will forever be grateful for the experience it gave me.
By Anne-Isabelle Legouy