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Simmons & Simmons and Akin Gump summer vacation schemes move online

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As Eversheds explores similar option

Simmons & Simmons and Akin Gump have announced their 2020 summer vacation schemes will go ahead, virtually, in view of the virus pandemic, as Eversheds Sutherland explores a similar option.

Simmons was due to run three summer vacation schemes in June and July this year, with two taking place in the London office for two-weeks each, as well as a week-long placement in Bristol. A spokesperson from the firm confirmed the schemes will move online.

“Due to the ongoing COVID-19 disruption, the Simmons & Simmons summer vacation scheme will take place virtually this year,” they said.

The virtual programme will run across four days, and participants will have the opportunity to complete typical trainee tasks, as well as take part in interactive exercises, presentations, virtual socials, wellbeing sessions and networking. Interns will also benefit from support from partners, associates and trainees.

They will still be considered for training contracts following completion of the virtual scheme, the spokesperson added, and participants’ remuneration will be pro-rated for the days they work.

Akin Gump has also confirmed its summer vacation scheme, due to take place in the US firm’s London office, will now run in a virtual format due to the remote-working situation extending across the summer period.

A spokesperson from the firm said that it will remain a full two-week programme, commencing in June. Details of its virtual offering are yet to be finalised and shared with students but an email sent to incoming vac schemers, and shared with Legal Cheek, explains that they will get to know more about the firm and its practice areas, build professional and legal skills and also network, virtually, with the firm’s current trainees and lawyers.

Following the successful completion of the programme, and, if they wish to be considered for a training contract, the firm will arrange for candidates to meet with the graduate recruitment partner panel. Participants will be remunerated the original amount that was communicated to them, the spokesperson added.

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Meanwhile, an Eversheds spokesperson confirmed that this year’s summer cohort will engage in an online experience.

“Our summer vacation programme will go ahead and we are currently exploring how we can deliver this as a virtual experience for our 2020 cohort,” they said, adding: “We are committed to providing our students with a good insight and understanding of what it’s like to work with us, and in a very new format this year.”

View a list of law firm schemes that have gone virtual due to COVID-19 so far. This page will be updated as we receive new information.

Has your scheme been affected by the coronavirus? Let us know at tips@legalcheek.com

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42 Comments

llb hopeful

Akin Pump, absolute top

US NQ wishing to move in house (Alex gimme a job pls)

Top pay, shit life. Never leave the office/ always on call and working, and a trainee intake or around 5 (mostly assholes). Its ‘top’ alright

The pump is the juice

If you can’t handle the Pump, stay away from the Akin.

Marco

What about NRF, Macs, CMS and SPB?

Harry

All going ahead online

Rachel

They’re all going ahead online

roflcopter

CMS lmao

Amy

Akin Gump is the only firm so far that is keeping the same length vac schemes under the virtual format and remunerating the vac schemers the same. Probably because they don’t need to make major adjustments to cut their spending and save them coins

George

150k nq they’re absolutely taking it in

Gushing

Total powerhouse, unstoppable

Anon

Jeepers is it that much?

Thomas

150k for a first year nq, it gets considerably higher each year. That’s the issue that sparked the pay wars between magic circle and silver circle firms and the US firms. Once you qualify at a magic circle or silver circle firm the money stays around the same mark until you’re a senior whereas at the US firms you can actually see a good increase

Will

Macfarlanes is also keeping scheme same length and remunerating same amount!

Travers insider

Nope, Travers are doing the same. Full two weeks worth of pay.

Ew

Virtual vacation schemes sounds horrible, why can’t they wait till autumn like other firms where it’s likely people would be able to meet in person?

Liar liar pants on fire

What other firms?….. literally all of the firms so far have adopted the same online virtual vac scheme or directly offered TC interviews. None have mentioned they are waiting until autumn

DLAbcdefg

DLA Piper is doing a virtual vac scheme and also having in office visits later on in the year when it’s fully safe to have everyone come

Read

Dumb ass, Orrick did

Romeo

I believe Orrick are, but I think more are doing virtual

Question

They may be paying top pay but what are their hours saying for that pay?

Mo money

To be honest the only way to truly live in London without drowning in costs of living and rent prices and tax is to work somewhere that pays a good six figures

Aaron

Not much different from the Magic Circle and Silver Circle firms who are getting paid about 60k less

survivor

That’s BS bro – Silver Circle firms make you work far far less. Akin and Kirkland pump you like mad

Rory

I’ve heard firms like Macfarlanes and Travers Smith are just as bad. They’re mid size so the work isn’t distributed around like the larger firms but the trainees and associates have to see to most of it

Travers 2nd Seat Trainee

Lol trust me Travers trainees don’t work as long hours as US firms. My bf is at Latham, he and I work very very very different schedules

What people don’t realise about the elite US firms is that it’s not just longer hours. It’s the CONSTANT weekend work, it’s the low 20-22 day holiday allowance and the fact no one takes those days off anyway. It’s the sink or swim culture . It’s the fact that very few last longer than 5PQE.

@travers trainee

Do you think your bf will stay after qualifying? Curious about the sustainability for those in elite US law firms. Or if they’re just looking to make some quick money and get a top firm on their CV and leave

Anon

Which areas are the worst for the pump?

survivor

Restructuring, arbitration, funds, all sweatshop hours

I would like 2 know

Would also like to know answer to this

lauren

Still as of yet none of the firms have clarified how they’re going to choose who gets the TCs

Yes

Simple…you know they’ll simply say those that log off zoom are eliminated, those that are left with their zoom get it, like virtual hunger games.

Diane Abbott

Does it matter? They normally aren’t obligated to be transparent in the decision anyways. Just gotta “do your best” and pray afterwards.

H E L P PLZ

Genuine Question:

I’ve been offered a TC at a firm that has an office in London but also regionally and I’ve been given a choice… the firms regional office is very close to where I live and I wouldn’t have to pay for bills or anything like that as I live at home with family so it will all go to savings. The Trainee salary is 20k and nq salary is around 40k.

But I could also choose London, where the salary is more than double the regional salary but the rent and the living costs would be high plus I’d have to probably rent a tiny room in a shared house with a bunch of strangers.

I genuinely don’t know what to do. I’ve heard horror stories about the realities of working and living in London and I question if I’ll have a better quality of life if I pick the regional office

Trainee

Virtual vac schemes are not ideal, but just got to try shine.

Bird

Random, but does anyone know when Bird & Bird is holding their TC interviews?

2birds

Nando’s is closed mate

LLBer

Is an LLM from Oxbridge that much better than one from a top London uni? Can’t decide!

Anon

Do you mean Cambridge? Oxford don’t offer an LLM.

Realist

That’s like saying Oxford doesn’t offer an LLB. Technically true but it’s the same bloody content.

Anon

Not particularly true. Most LLMs cover a single specialist subject, the BCL and MJur cover 4+.

Realist

We’re not talking about most LLM’s, we’re comparing Cam LLM and Oxford BCL. You’d be hard pressed to find an area of law that you can study on either course that you can’t study on the other. In any case, I’m not sure you’re correct even if you take in more LLM’s. All the places I applied to had multiple specialisation options, or even just a generalist LLM track.

Joe

If you want to say you did an LLB / LLM you’d be better off at Cambridge or a good Russell group Uni.

Oxford calls their law degree “jurisprudence” or something like that and the modules are different to the traditional LLB

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