Solicitor Apprentice at BPP
My name is Amy Marren, I am 21 years old and currently working for BPP Professional Education Group. I joined the BPP legal team in February 2017 as a Paralegal Apprentice and I have now progressed on to become a Solicitor Apprentice.
BPP is a well-known University within the legal profession and held in extremely high regard, which is one of the reasons that I feel so privileged to be in the role that I am in. As well as studying to be a solicitor, I am also a Paralympic swimmer and I am aiming for my third Paralympic Games in Tokyo next summer.
"...having competed in two Paralympic Games and winning a Paralympic bronze medal, nothing was more daunting to me that beginning a career outside of my sport."
Interestingly, a career in law was not my first choice. I had studied law at GCSE level, but I did not choose it as an A level as it was not taught at my chosen sixth form. After passing my A -levels and obtaining the required grades for university, I left home to continue my education at Loughborough University in September 2016, studying Geography and Sport Management.
Freshers week came and went, and as time went on, I started to realise that university life was not for me and so I returned home in January, ready for a new challenge! My parents were very supportive through the whole process, as they had not been to university themselves.
As previously mentioned, having competed in two Paralympic Games and winning a Paralympic bronze medal, nothing was more daunting to me that beginning a career outside of my sport. On top of starting a new career and panicking about how I would be treated in a workplace (having only one hand), I still wasn’t sure what career path I wanted to take (as is the case with many 18-year olds fresh from A-levels!). I did, however, still have that spark for law deep down and I knew that the potential opportunities that it could bring to me were endless.
I had a conversation with my parents, and aside from the initial shock of me jumping from geography to law, they were brilliant in encouraging me to chase my dreams! It was my mum who suggested that an apprenticeship may be an option to explore. As always, my mum had given me a great idea and I quickly logged online to chase down apprenticeships being offered in and around London. After sifting through countless pages, I eventually found an advertisement that had caught my eye, at BPP! The hours looked great, and to make things better, my commute would only be 30 minutes on one train! Result! I think is key to highlight that at the time, I was unsure of what an in-house environment would be like; other than the fact that it would be within a smaller legal team and provide a more comfortable way for me to begin my legal career. I did however know, that this was too fantastic of an opportunity to pass up!
Fast forward two and a half years, and here I am now writing this blog about a job that I absolutely love; so things worked out very well for me in the end! For me, a role in-house offers me the chance to develop as a whole, both academically and as a person. As we celebrate 100 years of women in law, I would like to note that I have been very lucky and humbled to have such a great team to work with, one which has fantastic women to look up to.
"...a role in-house allows me to continue training and working towards my Tokyo 2020 mission..."
I also love being in-house because there is a level of trust within my team and I am allowed to take my time with new issues to ensure that I am learning for myself, rather than taking the easy route. From a networking perspective, working at BPP allows me to see both the education side and commercial side of the business, which in turn has allowed me to forge good working relationships with much more senior members of staff.
Above all, a role in-house allows me to continue training and working towards my Tokyo 2020 mission, something that I am not sure would be achievable in private practice.