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Epic Fails

How NOT to Write a Vacation Scheme Application Epic Fails

How NOT to Write a Vacation Scheme Application
I once helped a blind man cross the road

The prospect of writing a vacation scheme application can leave the best of us weak at the knees. They say you can learn by example. Well, here’s an example of how to completely scupper your chances of getting on a vacation scheme. Members of the jury, we present to you Exhibit A: exactly how not to write a vacation scheme application…


What skills do you believe you would need to have as a commercial lawyer?           

What skills do I not have, I ask you? Good sire, let me lay out my skills in front of you like a legal striptease.

Off comes my jacket of an analytical and enquiring mind, my socks of clear verbal and written communication skills and my Crocs of entrepreneurial instinct. I fling away my detail-oriented wristwatch and whip off my clothes of commercial awareness, exposing me, your future trainee, in all my naked glory.

When choosing vacation schemes to apply to, what criteria did you use and why do you believe that our law firm meets those criteria?

I devised a contemporary reimagining of a more transitional matrix by which law firms, or solicitors’ firms, or, indeed, the firms of solicitors, can be valued with regards to, but notwithstanding, the financial gain that their trainees might be a recipient of. Upon much reflection and recalibration, I inferred that your firm is befitting of said criteria. Thus it can be said, that I am, unconditionally, the master of legalese.   

Describe a position of responsibility you have held and what you have learnt from it.

I have always been a natural leader; I led the charge from my mother’s womb and have never really looked back. I distinctly remember that, even though Clara Smythes claims otherwise, I was the first girl to introduce Dairylea Dunkers into the British primary school system.

A natural born leader (it needs saying twice), I once helped a blind man cross the road. Showcasing my excellent communication skills, I grasped him by the arm and bellowed “let me help you” into his ear, just in case he was deaf too. He wasn’t. Like Moses parting the Red Sea, I held up my (authoritative) hand, bringing a Ford Mondeo to a screeching halt.

Demonstrating what can only be described as quick-thinking, I transformed myself into a human crutch to propel my client onwards across the zebra crossing. As I deposited him on the other side, I heard him whisper, “Who is she that comes to me in my direst hour of need? A seraph? An angel?”

“Nay,” I replied, “a law student.”

What are your main strengths/weaknesses?

You ask me, dear recruiter, what my main strengths are. To that, I reply, I am proactive, dynamic and motivated. I have a proactive eye for detail; I am motivationally detail-oriented and dynamically communicative. I pride myself on my ability to communicate without deviation, hesitation or repetition. I’m not just a team-player, I am the team, I am the player, and I am the player of the team.

It has often been remarked that my greatest weakness, my Achilles’ heel, is that I simply do things too well. My university tutors tear out their hair in despair as I deliver (two weeks before the deadline) another pitch perfect, beautiful constructed essay. I’m fully aware of this weakness and have taken steps to combat this errant perfectionism.

What are your interests/activities?

From a very young age, I have always had a particular interest in legal phrases, labelling my teacher, to the mirth of my classroom colleagues, non compus mentis. Oh how we laughed!

I’m fascinated by ordinary people, or “plebs”, deigning to offer my services bi-annually at my local Citizens Advice Bureau.

I always buy the Big Issue. Once, I helped a blind man cross the road. At weekends, I lunch with family friends Dave and Sam Cameron, dropping in on Govey for cream tea.

I play netball, squash and polo. I have been known to clear 4.88 metres on the pole vault. My washboard abs rival Jessica Ennis’, I’ve got the thighs of Chris Hoy, the arms of Paula Radcliffe, and the vicious cornrows of Nicola Adams. I am a legal powerhouse of strength and beauty and, for that alone, I deserve a place on your vacation scheme.

To get some proper advice on vacation scheme applications, check out these articles:

You can apply for thousands of vacation schemes at the AllAboutLaw jobs page.

Image courtesy of Shht! “The 5th Beatle Crossing Abbey Road”

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