Applying for a training contract can be daunting, and it's not always easy to relate the experience you have to the job. In our "Life Lessons" series, our trainees reflect on the non-legal experience they had and how it helped them with their application and interview.
Did you know trainee Rufus Scholefield rowed in an unsupported rowing race across the Atlantic Ocean to raise money for charity? He also competed as an international rower for Team GB.
I started rowing when I began university as it was a sport I had watched at the Olympics and thought it looked quite interesting. Initially, I enjoyed messing about in boats on the water and the camaraderie but it quickly grasped my attention and commitment and became quite a serious endeavour.
I progressed through the university and national set ups and soon I was attending world championships and international regattas for Team GB. Rowing is the ultimate team sports as you are physically attached to your teammates through the boat and one person's mistake can have huge ramifications for the other eight members of the crew so you quickly learn a lot about teamwork. Another key lesson was time management, training twice a day, every day takes up a lot of your time and trying to balance that with a social life and your university studies is quite a challenge.
I think my rowing experience helped me become a trainee at Howard Kennedy. I was able to show there was a lot more to my personality and that I had the commitment to accomplish my goals. Also, I was able to talk about something other than just my academic results - I spoke about another challenge I was about to undertake, a rowing race across the Atlantic Ocean. Here I displayed not only a commitment to my own goals, but also my commitment to others, as we raised £100,000 for Teenage Cancer Trust as part of the race. And in all honesty, I think anyone eccentric enough to take on something like that will always fit in well at Howard Kennedy, where you're definitely encouraged to be yourself.