Law fairs offer you an initial look at law firms. They are your chance to meet real lawyers and graduate recruiters, to quiz them about their firms and get a general impression of how to get a job. They're also useful for non-law students who are considering a career in law.
Law fairs take place at most universities across the country in the autumn term, so look out for posters and careers service emails to find out about yours. When it arrives at your university, the law fair will commandeer a large space like a sports hall or conference centre. Firms will bring large, bright exhibition stands to grab your attention and quirky (or not so quirky) freebies to seduce you. At law fairs, everyone's a winner: you get to chat to recruiters and lawyers to find out what they really want in candidates and they get to take an initial look at you. It's much less intimidating than an interview.Quick tips:
- Do your research beforehand into the firms that will be attending and write a hit list of the ones you'd like to talk to;
- Speak confidently to the people on the stand (recruiters and lawyers) and ask interesting questions about their firm; and
- Give the recruiter your name - they'll remember you if you're a good candidate.
- The size and culture of the firm;
- The types of client and range of business;
- The location (ie, London or the regions);
- The style of training and range of experience offered to trainees;
- The opportunities for trainees in firms with overseas offices.
Postgraduate course providers - law schools where you'll study after your degree - also have a presence at law fairs. You might want to ask them about the percentage of students who complete the postgrad courses but don't have a training contract/pupillage lined up, links with firms and chambers and whether you can defer the course to take a year out (if you're considering a gap year).
Here's a list of this year's law fairs. As more fairs are announced we will add to this list so be sure to keep checking back for your university.