Our second-year Trainees

We asked our second-year trainees to answer some questions about their first impression of the firm, and about their route into the law.

Charlotte Colthurst

What's your first impression of the firm and its values? 

Having been introduced to the new brand values 'Talk Straight, Think Smart, Be Yourself' within the first few weeks of joining, these are exactly the values I have experienced so far - everyone strives to provide sincere and direct advice to clients in an unpretentious manner.

Why did you decide to pursue a career in law?

I chose law because I want a career that is intellectually stimulating, that offers the opportunity to work with all kinds of people and businesses, and where I can be part of the ever-changing legal landscape.

Jack O'Shea

What's your first impression of the firm's culture? 

The firm places a strong emphasis on its people. Everyone is encouraged to get involved as much as possible in the firm's activities and we are given an impressive amount of support, which helps foster the entrepreneurial spirit that the firm has. 

What career path did you take to get to where you are?

I took a fairly conventional route to arrive at Howard Kennedy. After my undergraduate degree in the US, I undertook the GDL and LPC at the University of Law in Moorgate, completing two Vac Schemes during my GDL.

Diarra Brown

What's your first impression of your seat?

Residential Real Estate offers an interesting mix of work with high value deals and exposure to refinancing work. I regularly liaise with estate agents, banks and solicitors on the other side, and often attend client meetings. I also have autonomy over my files.

What are you hoping to get out of your trainee-ship?

Hands on learning and training to enable me to become the best lawyer possible. The platform to network with potential and existing clients and the opportunity to promote the firm by pursuing my flair for business development. 

Jamie Rhodes

What's your first impression of your supervision and the mentor scheme?

My supervisor has given me autonomy to get on with work but I know he is always there should I have any questions. My mentor has also been excellent and offers me the opportunity to discuss my legal career beyond the training contract. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your career?

Harvey Specter from Suits... no, undoubtedly its been my parents. Since they both work in the legal industry, I have been surrounded by law since an early age and they have been amazing at supporting me at every stage of my journey so far. 

Charlotte Towerton

What's your first impression of the social side of the firm?

There's a lot going on socially within the firm. We've had Bingo, staff drinks, and the magnum of champagne raffle! 

What advice/top tip would you give to trainees in the recruitment process?

Do your research - it is hard when faced with a firm's website to really know what the culture of the firm is like but do your best to research as many external sources as possible; see what articles fee earners have written or events they have attended. 

Owen Griffiths

What's your first impression of the local area?

London Bridge is really vibrant and provides easy access to the City. The George is a great local pub that was frequented by Charles Dickens and dates back to 1543! Hay's Galleria has got a wide range of places to grab lunch & we’re also very close to Borough Market.

What career path did you take to get to where you are?

I worked as a police officer for thirteen years, answering emergency calls for approximately five years then working as a detective in Brixton and specialist investigations. I enjoyed the technical cases, such as complex fraud, and decided to study the GDL part-time.

Josh Page

What's your first impression of the firm's culture?

I've found it to be a supportive, down-to-earth culture where people at all levels of seniority are very approachable. It's therefore very non-hierarchical compared to firms I've worked at in the past. The open plan office also creates a sociable atmosphere.

What career path did you take to get to where you are?

It's varied from litigation paralegal work in the City for 3 years to selling Cornettos in my local cinema during my A levels. I've also had spatterings of bar work and waitering along the way, as well as volunteering as an English teacher in Asia.

Jessica Rush

What's your first impression of the firm and its values?

I felt like the firm made a real effort to make us feel welcome and orientate us in our first week. The training that we received gave us a good chance to ask questions and to get to know the other trainees. 

Who has been the biggest influence on your career?

A family friend who let me do a week of work experience at his firm, who told me it was an SRA requirement that there always be free biscuits in the kitchen. 

I think he lied.

Trainee diary

What's it really like to be a trainee at Howard Kennedy? Hear it from our trainees themselves.