Debevoise and Plimpton Training Contract Application Model Answers

Debevoise and Plimpton Training Contract Application Model Answers

Debevoise and Plimpton Training Contract Application Model Answers

Social, Leisure and Sporting Activities and Achievements including Positions of Responsibility:

In 2003 I founded the languages ‘lunchtime’ club where students got an opportunity to improve their linguistic skills and learn additional languages. I was in charge of the [language] and [language] teaching course where I supervised five executive members, organised excursions to [language] and [language] events in United Kingdom, provided students with interactive activities and homework and helped them to prepare for GCSE exams. I was a very active member of the debating society and have represented my school in the national debate competition. Throughout my time at school I was a very active member of the first football team and have represented the school in many inter-school competitions. To help the local community I organised and participated in ‘give a hand, help a neighbour’ campaign whereby the local community was encouraged to help the elderly and deprived through altruistic behaviour. I was the member of the local amateur [Sport] club whereby I competed in amateur bouts almost every fortnight.

Higher Education

Since [year] I have been a very zealous member of the ‘[society]’ society. In January [year], I have successfully started an on-campus [Sport] club. I am currently the president of the society and have the responsibility of managing ten executives. Throughout my second and third year at university I have actively represented [bank name] to graduates. I am a very active executive of the [language] Speaking Society where I am actively organising cultural events such as the [celebration], [language] [national celebration], [language] Winter Party just to name a few. I am the Student-Staff Liaison Committee member for the third year law students and actively exercise my commitment to the legal profession by maintain a social dialogue between the students and staff of the law school. On a sportier note, I have won a gold medal for England in the Four Nations amateur [Sport] tournament. I am also a member of the [university] [sport] club and have been selected to play in the [sport] National Championships last summer. I am also a member of the [university] [club] where I get an opportunity to do some target shooting as a way of improving my precision and improving my concentration levels.


I greatly enjoy motor sports and last year along with some friends I have modified and partially rebuilt a ‘Subaru Impreza Turbo’ car. I found this experience to be very interesting, challenging and above all else rewarding.

Please describe an achievement of importance to you:

This year I have successfully set up a ‘[University] [Sport] Club’, which was unsuccessfully attempted for over fifty years. The main reason for there not being a [Sport] club at the university is because the sports committee had health and safety concerns regarding the nature of the sport. However, having [done the sport] at both national and international level, my experience teaches me otherwise. After much consideration the sports committee allowed [university] University to form an affiliation with the ‘[university name] [Sport] Club’. From then on I had to attend multiple meetings with the [city] club to decide how to best merge the two clubs together, which admittedly was very time consuming and stressful because [university] club was not officially recognised. Lack of recognition prevented us from receiving sponsorship. I established a ‘[Sport] Appreciation Society’ to promote [Sport] at [university] University and act as a proxy for the affiliate club. This official society gained the ‘[University] [Sport] Club’ recognition which means that we can start marketing the club and receiving support from various organisations.

Please tell us two personal objectives that you hope to achieve whilst a trainee at Debevoise:

Firstly, I aspire to become a successful international lawyer and would thus like to learn additional jurisdictions. Recently, I have undertaken an advanced competition law module whereby I had to compare and contrast EC and US jurisdictions in multiple areas of competition law. I especially enjoyed comparing and contrasting the different approached of US and EC cases to ‘refusal to supply’ category of competition law. I especially enjoyed reading and analysing the Microsoft decision whereby Microsoft was fined for refusing to supply interoperability data to its competitors. The case produced a divide between the US and EC jurisdictions on the fundamental aim of competition law: consumer welfare. Having lived in [country], [country] and USA I was very enthralled with diverse and rich cultures. This summer I have worked for [law firm] and particularly enjoyed having to interact with [language] and American clients since it allowed me to exercise my excellent communication skills and build and maintain successful relationships. By taking the next step of working at Debevoise I will not only get an opportunity to learn new jurisdictions but will also add value to the firm through my outstanding ability to build and maintain personal and professional relationships.

Secondly, I would like to assume early responsibility. As a commercial lawyer I will have an active involvement in project management, making sure deadlines are met, colleagues are kept up to date and information is communicated to the client. Given that commercial law is both transactional and ongoing suggests that I will have to build a rapport with the client and apply strong communication skills coupled with high technical ability when forming a clear picture of the client’s needs and objectives and then explaining what may well be a complex area of law when advising on the best solution. This may require me to liaise with a number of legal departments thus making each day unique, enjoyable and fulfilling work experience.

Please tell us what has influenced you in your decision to apply to Debevoise:

I am attracted by the small number of trainee intake which I feel will offer me bespoke training that is individually tailored to my interests, experience and aptitude. More importantly, I will receive the excitement and challenge of working on high value, complex transactions and disputes, in the size of office where everyone knows who you are. For me this will mean getting involved in real work from the start whereby I will be able to add something to the cases I work on. I was particularly attracted by Debevoise deal on the largest sale of US land since Louisiana Purchase involving 60, 000 parcels of land and spread over 17 management areas. Taking up a lead transaction counsel for International Paper (IP), Debevoise assembled a team of corporate, tax, real estate and finance lawyers to structure, manage and negotiate the disposition. The high value of transactions and a relatively small number of individuals involved will mean that I will assume early responsibility and will have a project management role when it comes to meeting deadlines, communicating with clients or other practice areas or offices. Given that the London office works closely with other offices in [country] and New York would allow me to gain a practical perspective and experience of multiple jurisdictions and more importantly would allow me to contribute to the success of the firm through my outstanding linguistic skills and my ability to form and maintain relationships. The combination of closely-knit teams and a collegiate environment, collaboration with different practice areas and offices, and high value of cases would therefore vest me with early responsibility, allow me to exercise my outstanding communication skills to build and maintain professional relationships with clients and colleagues, and more importantly learn and develop my understanding of different areas and jurisdictions of law. Working at Debevoise would undoubtedly provide me with optimum conditions to achieve my ambition of becoming a successful international lawyer.