Work Placement / Internship

2022 HSF Summer Vacation Scheme

London. Multiple vacancies. Open to all STEM.

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Elevate your ambition.

It’s never too early to take control of your career. Join us on the Herbert Smith Freehills summer vacation scheme and start today.

Explore our firm for yourself, build your connections and find your vocation with hands-on training from leading lawyers. You won’t be watching from the side lines here. You’ll hit the ground running, taking on real work for real clients. You’ll work directly with colleagues who are experts in their fields, and happy to share what they know. You’ll get to choose your two seats so your experience is tailored to you. And you’ll have a trainee buddy at every step to support you.

"Everyone is so friendly and approachable"

Trainees, Cassie and Kate, explain why they chose to pursue their Training Contract at Herbert Smith Freehills. To watch the full Gradcracker/Herbert Smith Freehills webinar click here.

Who are Herbert Smith Freehills?

We’re a leading, full-service, global law firm working on some of the world’s biggest cases and deals at the forefront of the world’s most exciting sectors. With an award-winning depth of expertise across a wide variety of sectors, geographies and legal specialisms, you don’t just watch from the side lines here, you hit the ground running, make a difference and tackle the important issues. 

By combining perspectives and potential from diverse backgrounds, we offer our clients pioneering solutions. With our innovative and inclusive culture, we’re building a reputation for excellence across legal disciplines, business sectors and continents. Our progressive approach allows us to continually break new ground; whether it’s a complex international dispute or a billion-pound, cross-border deal. You'll get involved in new situations and experiences and discover new skills to learn and apply.

What will I be doing?

Our vacation schemes immerse you in our work, networks and the international world of law. Key features:

  • You’ll sit with a partner or a senior associate, delivering real work for real clients.
  • You’ll attend workshops and presentations covering all of our practice areas. You’ll also spend time working on a pro bono research project.
  • You’ll be invited to various networking events with partners, associates and trainees.

What we look for

Personal leadership

You need to demonstrate an interest in client relationships and how you would go about building on these. You should also be able to show us good active listening skills and persuasive skills to gain support for ideas. 

Technical capability 

As well as considered reasoning and a desire to learn, using initiative is a key skill for a trainee. Think about how you would seek out new opportunities in order to gain a deeper understanding of the role. 

Intellectual capability

Academic excellence should be demonstrated through degree classification. While a minimum of a 2:1 is preferred in a STEM subject, we take mitigating circumstances into account. There’s space on the application form to include these details and they will be taken into consideration throughout the application process. 

Contributions to the team’s success 

Communication skills are critical for trainees, think about examples where you’ve been able to bring about positive outcomes by communicating and collaborating with colleagues.

Working styles

You can demonstrate this competency by giving examples of organisational skills and showing that you’re able to cope well under pressure. 

Motivation for a career in law at the firm

Think about why you’ve chosen to pursue a career in commercial law, and why Herbert Smith Freehills in particular.

What are the benefits?

  • Salary: £450 per week
  • Guaranteed interview for a training contract upon completion of the scheme

Key dates

  • Schemes run: 13 June - 1 July 2022 and 4 – 22 July 2022
  • Apply between: 13 September – 3 December 2021
  • Assessment centres: January - March 2022 (open to penultimate-year students, finalists and graduates)

We only recruit our future trainees from our vacation schemes and students are assessed by their supervisors and given an assessed piece of work in each of the two seats. When making our decision, we look at a combination of those things. Our vacation schemes have been specifically designed to build and test the unique combination of skills and potential required to succeed at Herbert Smith Freehills. It’s really important to us that you have the combination of skills and potential that we’re looking for: it will enable you to become a better lawyer, build stronger connections with our team and hit the ground running when you start your career here.

It’s a two-way process. The scheme gives you the chance to get to know us and see what life at Herbert Smith Freehills would be like before you make a decision about your career.

We've signed the Gradcracker feedback pledge.

(This means that we will supply feedback if requested after an interview.)

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