As part of their commercial awareness and career development study trips embedded within the Immigration Law module, our LLB students recently got a chance to visit Kingsley Napley LLP, a leading law firm based in central London. Founded in 1937, this dynamic firm of more than 400 attorneys provides legal advice nationally and internationally and works with a wide range of clients in a number of specialist fields, including commercial, employment, real estate, criminal litigation, family, regulatory, dispute resolution, immigration, and public law.
Our students became acquainted with the specialist Immigration team, which has been advising businesses and individuals on all aspects of UK immigration and nationality law for over 20 years, and which is top-ranked in both Chambers and Legal-500 rankings. We were hosted by Ms Marcia Longdon, a Partner in the Immigration team. With experience spanning over 20 years in the industry, Ms Longdon has been listed in Who’s Who Legal as a Thought Leader in Corporate Immigration and was chosen as one of the first Legal Services Are Great champions. She shared with us reflections on her personal career path, offered poignant examples of her work and her day-to-day practice, and kindly provided career-development tips. We also met with Ms Ilda de Sousa, another Partner in Immigration. Both brought immigration practice to life and impressed upon the students the significance and breath of immigration law, while explaining in detail some of the newer elements of this rapidly-changing area of law (including the rights of EU nationals since Brexit, and employer-sponsorship rules for skilled workers).
Next, Mr Stephen Parkinson, Kingsley Napley’s Senior Partner and former Deputy Head of the Attorney General’s Office, discussed other practice areas and the firm’s overall culture, shedding further light on what professional and personal qualities make a good lawyer. Our students were provided with tips on how best to prepare themselves for applying and interviewing at law firms generally, and about how to translate their work and university experiences into skills that law firms look for in potential trainees. As a member of the Diversity & Inclusion group, Mr Parkinson also emphasised the firm’s diversity and equality policies and how its various inclusion networks help to ensure that all employees have a full opportunity to maximise their potential.
After these formal presentations, the students had a chance to mingle and chat one-on-one with our hosts, learning more about the rewards of legal practice at such a progressive firm, and about ways of gaining legal experience.
Learning about Kingsley Napley’s work on cutting-edge legal issues and with clients who often appear in the news provided our students an exciting perspective and a nice complement to what they have been learning in the classroom. We are very grateful to Kingsley Naples for being able to offer our students this engaging opportunity, especially amidst Covid-19 related restrictions.