Corporate social responsibility is a key focus for Your Legal Friend and we actively encourage students from schools, colleges and universities to take part in work experience with us. In the summer of 2016, we took this a step further by inviting two Erasmus students from their places of education in Poland to work with us for 3 months. The Erasmus programme provides foreign exchange options to students from within the European Union whereby they can study or gain valuable work experience in their chosen field. One of the students that joined us was Patrycja Mitera from State Higher Vocational School in Tarnow.
Here Patrycja tells us about her experiences during the scheme and what made her come back to work for Your Legal Friend full time following the completion of her studies…
During my studies in Poland I applied for the Erasmus+ traineeship program to gain some experience and visit a foreign country. When I found out that I was going to Liverpool, I was over the moon.
I always wanted to try something new and see how life is in UK. I was a bit afraid about my language skills at first, but everything turned out to be fine. I was told clearly what my duties were so I knew exactly what to do. There were a lot of friendly people who were always willing to help me, so when my traineeship was over, I just knew one thing - once I finish my studies, I’ll definitely come back.
At the end of June 2017, out of the blue I received an email that there was a vacancy in the company, so I decided to send my CV over and… I got the job! I made the decision straight away as I knew that the job at Your Legal Friend, although it is demanding, brings you a lot of satisfaction and motivation. There are many opportunities for developing yourself and gaining knowledge from the different branches of law and medicine. You also work with excellently qualified lawyers from whom you can acquire knowledge.
In addition, for me personally, this is also a great opportunity to practice my language skills. To my surprise, my first week was much better than expected. Everyone was willing to help me and explain things which I didn’t understand or didn’t know how to do. My team colleagues were very friendly and they kept asking me if I needed any help which was very supportive. I started in the Industrial Disease Team and learnt a lot about illnesses our Clients suffer from and I learnt how to speak with them about their problems and how to assist the Clients on a daily basis during work for Your Legal Friend. After 6 months, I certainly gained a lot of knowledge and experience. The things I have to deal with differ greatly – translations, contact with Clients and reviews.
Working in the UK brings a lot of opportunities for constant development and improvement in many aspects of work in a law society. The most valuable thing I have already learnt here is how to communicate with people who suffer from diseases or injuries as this is – in my view- one of the most difficult things – to speak with them in such a way not to upset them and explain everything clearly so they are not confused. I also learnt how to prioritise my duties and manage my time to make my work as efficient as possible. I would like to keep developing my skills and gaining knowledge in that branch of law and this is my plan for the near future. Thanks to work at Your Legal Friend, I can easily do it every day.
If you are considering applying for a job at this company, you should definitely try it. You will find a lot of friendly people who are always willing to help you and explain anything you don’t know or understand. If you are a foreigner speaking fluent English – even better – helpful native colleagues are always there to help you to improve your language skills!