Supporting graduate employability

Work placements make a significant impact on a student's employability skills and career aspirations. Law firm Hill Hofstetter has been offering student internship opportunities and achieving some fantastic results, thanks to a successful partnership developed by one of our own alumnae.

As an alumna of University of Birmingham, Ann Benzimra (LLB Law with French, 1988), partner at Hill Hofstetter, recognises the importance of maintaining links with the University and to identify talent early on.

Ann developed summer internship opportunities for second and final year Law students, giving students the opportunity to assist Partners, Associates and other fee earners in the various departments across her firm.

Interns have played an active role in the day-to-day activities of the team and have had the opportunity to sit in on meetings with clients, assist with the preparation of documents for court,  assist with the translation of legal documents and a whole variety of administrative tasks. 

Hill Hofstetter is a specialist commercial firm offering first class legal and commercial advice to leading national and international corporations. More than 80 per cent of its work is generated by companies whose head offices are located outside the UK (particularly France, Germany, Scandinavia and the USA). The internships have offered a fantastic opportunity for Law students to really experience a fast paced international Law firm environment.

Speaking about this well established internship programme, Ann said:

"Recruiting interns has helped us enormously in allowing the students to fulfil an important role within the business while at the same time gaining valuable work experience with the business.

"We have been lucky to have seen some excellent students come into the business to work with us. Our previous two Birmingham interns have successfully achieved paralegal roles after their internships and I look forward to hearing how our latest intern's career progresses in the future."

Recent intern Thomas Butterfield (Law with French Law student) also told us about the positive impacts that he experienced as part of his time with Hill Hoffstetter:

“The entire placement became a real insight into commercial law and the areas covered. It confirmed to me that a career in commercial law is something that I’d like to pursue. It is an area that is constantly changing, bringing a refreshing interest to the life of a lawyer and I saw this in the work I completed during the placement.

"It has also taught me the importance a language skill can bring to the role and as a result I would be very keen to utilise my French language skills in any future legal career.” 

The University is committed to developing and strengthening links with business and organisations to facilitate short-term, placements for our students. If you think you might be able to help please contact our Head of Volunteering, Becky Mitchell.