I was immediately drawn to Baker McKenzie because of the firm's international focus and access to cross-border legal work. I made the decision to join Baker McKenzie following my experience during the Summer Clerkship application process, meeting my interviewing partners, and speaking to Baker McKenzie lawyers at the Summer Clerkship Cocktail and Information Evening. Everyone I met was so friendly and welcoming, and I knew this was the place I could build an exciting and dynamic career.
Following my Summer Clerkship, I was keen to start my career as a commercial lawyer in an international firm. I completed my Bachelor of Law/Arts at Macquarie University and after a short break to travel, I was ready to start my graduate program at Baker McKenzie.
In light of my interest in mooting a University, I was fortunate to rotate through Baker McKenzie’s Dispute Resolution team. I was involved in a broad range of work including interesting research tasks and preparing court documents. I also spent a few days observing our matters at the Supreme Court.
In addition to learning invaluable legal skills, the Summer Clerkship program was so much fun! I made close friendships with my cohort and was involved in firm activities and the inter-firm sports competition.
Baker McKenzie was also very supportive of my prior commitment to the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition and allowed me to take a flexible approach to the Summer Clerkship during my team's preparation for the competition.
Graduate at law
I undertook three graduate rotations in the Dispute Resolution, Corporate Markets, and IPTech practice groups. During my time in Dispute Resolution, I worked on some of the largest litigation matters and assisted in some complex research tasks. As a graduate in Corporate Markets, I managed and coordinated due diligence exercises for M&A deals that involved various practice groups across the firm. I was also involved in an interesting pro bono matter for a charity registering their organisation as a company limited by guarantee.
The IPTech team works on a broad range of matters canvasing media law, intellectual property, and technology. As a graduate in IPTech, I was lucky enough to gain experience across each of these areas. I had carriage of multiple trademark enforcement matters for some of the largest global companies. I was also involved in several intellectual property disputes in the Federal Court of Australia. The team gave me the invaluable experience of presenting a Professional Development session about two recent trademark law cases, which was a great way to develop my presentation skills.
Throughout my experience as a graduate, I realised how truly global Baker McKenzie is. Almost every matter had an international aspect; a cross-border transaction, working for an international client or corresponding with a lawyer from one of our 78 international offices.
I was given significant responsibility as a graduate throughout my three rotations, but I also felt supported by each team every step of the way. This level of responsibility accelerated my growth as a junior lawyer by developing my drafting, time management, and people management/interpersonal skills. It gave me an idea of what life is like as an associate at Baker McKenzie, and made me excited for my future in the firm!
Being a Global Associate
In March 2019, I settled in our IPTech team as a junior associate. Being a permanent fixture in a practice group allowed me to continue working on the long-term cases and projects that I was introduced to as a graduate. I can’t wait to expand my legal skills and get involved in some new and challenging matters.
To assist with the transition from graduate to a junior associate, Baker McKenzie encouraged me to join one of the firm’s industry groups. I joined the firm’s Healthcare & Life Sciences Industry Group, which comprises a team of lawyers from across the firm who have legal knowledge and expertise in the healthcare space. This has been an invaluable opportunity to network with other lawyers in the firm, and to learn more about the legal issues that interest me most.
I have also had the opportunity to work on pro bono matters and projects at Baker McKenzie. Once every few months, I volunteer at the Australian Centre for Disability Law and answer calls from potential clients seeking advice about disability discrimination issues. This is a very rewarding experience and a way to ensure that we are striving to address the unmet legal need in our communities.
I am also an active member of the Baker McKenzie Social Committee, where we plan monthly themed drinks, celebrations for cultural events, and the end of year party.
Next year, I am looking forward to attending the Asia Pacific Mid-level Associates meeting at one of Baker McKenzie’s offices in Australia. The meeting will bring together all Baker McKenzie mid-level lawyers in the Asia-Pacific region with two-three years’ experience for networking and skills development training.
At Baker McKenzie, the culture is unrivalled and the legal opportunities are infinite. I am looking forward to seeing what my future career at Baker McKenzie holds.