Training Contract Application to Maples Teesdale
Please set out a covering letter relating to your application in the field below. This must be in the format of a formal letter of introduction. Please limit the body of your letter to 300 words:
I am writing to apply for a training contract at Maples Teesdale.
Maples Teesdale’s expertise in the real estate sector excites me; its highly focused practice area means I will get real exposure to the issues affecting the industry. I want the challenge of working on high value, complex transactions and disputes for a varied range of clients, which will expose me to cutting-edge legal and commercial issues and allow me to add value to the cases that I work on.
In my current role at a media start-up, I have developed excellent interpersonal skills, which have enabled me to identify clients' needs and communicate how I can add value to their businesses. Managing a large workload and consulting with other departments has taught me the value of strong teamwork, as well as taking initiative when appropriate. This will prove valuable at Maples Teesdale, where the relatively small headcount will require solid teamwork skills. The small trainee intake will present me with high levels of responsibility from the outset, in the size of office where everyone knows everyone. This will undoubtedly foster my professional and personal growth.
During my placement at [law firm] in Commercial Real Estate, I developed excellent attention to detail. I researched the relevant law concerning road user charging, as a local authority client wanted to construct a toll road. I then prepared an initial letter of advice to the client. I learnt that law is a business, which depends upon the accuracy of advice, commerciality and building and maintaining relationships. Combining high technical ability with strong communication skills makes real estate law especially appealing to me.
Thank you for your consideration, and I look forward to hearing from you.
Please give details of your extracurricular activities and responsibilities in the field below. Detail any personal achievements and your level of involvement. Please limit your answer to 300 words.
I have always been passionate about cinema and frequent independent and arthouse cinemas in London. I also enjoy attending film festivals, and I maintain an online blog about film and cinema. While at [University], I was an active member of the [Society] and programmed screenings on campus. I was also involved in the marketing and outreach for the society.
I love travel and history, and have visited many places of interest. I had the opportunity to travel extensively within Israel during an internship based in Jerusalem. Most recently, I have visited Norway, Poland and Cambodia. I like nature and hiking, and have participated in Duke of Edinburgh camping expeditions through both school and university. During my time at Warwick, I hitchhiked from the campus all the way into Germany with a group of friends.
I greatly enjoy music, with my favourite genres being classical and jazz. I have taught myself acoustic fingerstyle guitar, and have also taken lessons in sitar. I enjoy attending concerts, and a personal goal of mine is to learn to play piano well.
I am fluent in Hindi and am currently taking Spanish lessons to develop my conversational skills. I have long admired those who can speak multiple languages, and being able to do so is another one of my personal long-term goals.
I think it is important to give back to the community and to champion the causes one believes in. I have volunteered at Crisis’ homeless shelters over the Christmas period, and worked in the Sponsorship department of a UK human rights charity. While at university, I took part in a pro bono project assisting American attorneys long-distance with their work on capital cases. This was a valuable learning experience as I was able to learn about law in a different jurisdiction.
10 / Personal attributes (A) We wish to assess your ability to solve problems and to deal with new tasks. With reference to your extracurricular activities and/or your work experience, tell us about:
(1) A high point, i.e. a job, task, or project that you did well. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
I suggested to my father, who started a management consultancy company, that he get the company logo trademarked. I took responsibility for the task by researching UK intellectual property law on trademarks, and I read up on the process to be followed. To prepare for a potential opposition or dispute, I researched previous trademark hearing decisions of the Intellectual Property Office and noted the relevant ones that could apply to my father’s company’s logo.
(2) The personal skills that you used to achieve it. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
In identifying the merits of getting the logo trademarked, I demonstrated my commercial acumen. Protecting the company’s brand identity and strengthening its appeal to potential investors were important. Having no prior knowledge of intellectual property rights, I demonstrated drive and initiative in researching the process. I applied my analytical skills in checking that no similar trademarks already existed, as well as distinguishing Intellectual Property Office decisions which rejected certain applications from our logo.
(3) What you learnt from it. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
I learnt to think commercially. If the company logo was not protected, it could be legally prevented from expanding if other businesses were to imitate it. Registering a trademark can also increase security and positively impact the business’s perceived value. I learnt the importance of attention to detail, as a trademark cannot be changed after applying. My analytical ability was developed by researching previous IPO decisions. I also learnt a lot about UK trademark law.
(4) In relation to a low point, i.e. something that went badly, how did you deal with the experience and what have you learnt from it? (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
Once during a receptionist shift at ‘Relate’ , a distressed sounding woman called, mistakenly thinking that it was an emergency helpline to report domestic abuse. She had been beaten by her partner. Although I was unprepared for the experience, I attempted to calm her down and gave her some numbers that she could call for help. I later spoke to my supervisor about the situation and learned that being empathetic and level-headed was the best approach.
We wish to assess your ability to work in and contribute to a team. With reference to your extra-curricular activities and/or your work experience, tell us about:
(1) A team that you have worked in or organised. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
While studying for my LLM, I was elected as Executive Editor for the SOAS Law Journal. There were many different levels of editors and the entire editorial board had to work closely with one another and assume responsibility for different tasks, to complete the publishing process. The editorial responsibilities at my level were substantial; they included checking the submissions for the relevant law, correcting referencing, and reviewing for clarity of style and originality of thought.
(2) The personal skills that you used when working in or organising the team. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
I used my communication skills to explain to the team the reasons for the changes I had made during editing, to clarify certain sections of an article, and to liaise with the authors about their work. I had to balance competing priorities as the role was alongside my studies. I developed leadership skills by delegating tasks and suggesting ideas. My legal research skills were also employed as I had to ascertain several points of law.
(3) Any difficulties that you faced and how you overcame them. (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
Midway through the editorial process, one of the executive editors dropped out due to personal circumstances. As the work had been evenly and deliberately split between the team based on interests and areas of law, this proved an issue. The workload had to be redistributed based on areas of knowledge, time capability and other commitments. This required solid communication and a commitment to getting the job done to the highest possible standard, despite the challenge.
11 / Why Maples Teesdale?
(1) How did you hear about Maples Teesdale?
Through a fellow student.
(2) Why are you applying to Maples Teesdale? (Please limit your answer to 75 words)
The niche practice area of Maples Teesdale will enable me to gain more in-depth knowledge of real estate law than I would elsewhere. I will therefore be able to make a tangible contribution to the firm’s success. Being at a smaller firm, I will have the chance to get involved in other sides of the business and help with marketing and networking. I am excited by the prospect of helping to develop innovative solutions to complex cases.