Over the course of the year, we will be spotlighting members of Girlings Solicitors’ team, their backgrounds, roles, and unique perspectives, so you can get to know the people that are working hard for you.
Name: Jenna Keir
Job Title: Newly Qualified Assistant Solicitor
1. What is your favourite activity to do locally and why?
I play for a local football team and train on a Thursday evening and play matches on Sunday afternoon. I have played football from a young age so it is a hobby I have always enjoyed. Since moving to Kent it has been a great way of meeting people in the local area and getting to know different parts of Kent. It’s a way of keeping fit without feeling like you’re exercising!
2. Can you share three things about you that people might not know?
- I only lived in Scotland until I was three- the other 22 years have been spent in England
- I was offered a scholarship to play football in America when I was 17 but turned it down as I wanted to pursue a legal career in the UK
- Fleetwood Mac are my favourite band and I am the proud owner of all the CDs they have released since they started out in 1967
3. Explain the key benefits about the trainee contract at Girlings
The first key benefit of the trainee contract is that there is a period of 6-9 months prior to commencing the training contract which allows you as a prospective trainee to “learn the ropes” and get to know the way the Firm works. This period makes it much easier when the time comes to starting the training contract as it means that you are able to concentrate on the work you are asked to carry out (as opposed to then having to start learning various IT systems and having to integrate with the team).
Another benefit of being a trainee is the various areas of law the Firm practices. This gives the you the opportunity to find out exactly what department you would like to specialise in and the Firm offers a range of both contentious and non-contentious seats.
Ultimately, for me the main benefit of the trainee contract at Girlings comes down to the people at the Firm. Colleagues at all levels are welcoming and supportive throughout the whole process and, as a result, it makes training with the Firm a really enjoyable experience. The support given also means that as a trainee you are never left to feel isolated.
4. What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?
In addition to playing football, I have a gym membership and will often spend my time in the gym or swimming after work which is a perfect way to wind down after a day in the office. My partner Naomi and I try and make the most of our weekends, and as we are still relatively new to the area we often spend time exploring restaurants in different parts of Kent. We also make the trip back up North once a month to visit our families.
5. What advice would you give to someone who is potentially thinking about starting a law training contract?
It is a challenging but highly enjoyable two years, and I would advise anyone who is considering a training contract to go for it absolutely. It is important to be open to change and willing to adapt in order to really get the most out of the training contract. Those qualities, coupled with a positive attitude, will equip any prospective trainee with the skills they need to deal with whatever might be thrown at them!
Find out more about Jenna here.
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