09 May 2023

Can you tell us a bit about your journey to Burges Salmon?

After completing my undergraduate degree in history at the University of Cambridge, I went on to do the PGDL law conversion, followed by the LPC at ULaw in Bristol. My training contract with Burges Salmon began in September 2022; my first seat was in the Corporate Finance team. I am currently with the Funds and Financial Regulation team, so I haven’t moved far – I’m just a few offices down from where I used to sit!

What does inclusion in the workplace mean to you?

Essentially, I think feeling supported, valued and connected to the people around you is key. I feel that is important to have a sense of belonging within the wider community, whilst retaining the ability to express your individuality. In this way, I think it also really helps to have specific groups of people to identify with and relate to. At Burges Salmon, we have several fantastic BGroups; BProud, BCultured, BEnabled and BBalanced, which all play a crucial role in ensuring that everyone is represented and heard within our wider community. Through BProud, I have found a great sense of belonging; Burges Salmon is keen to ensure all these groups are supported, engaged and that our opinions have a genuine impact on the culture of the firm.

What exciting projects have you been part of with our BGroups?

Since starting at Burges Salmon, I have joined the BProud Management Committee (MComm) who are involved with planning social events, sending out communications and generally supporting our BProud members. Recently, we’ve organised a ‘Lunch and Learn’ session run by OutStories Bristol in celebration of LGBT+ History month, in which we learned about notable LGBTQ+ history in and around Bristol. I am responsible for sending out information about key historical events in the LGBT+ calendar to members of BProud. BProud have recently re-started our monthly coffee mornings, and are currently in the middle of planning more exciting events – stay tuned!

In terms of external events, I was pleased to attend Bright Network’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging Event, at which I met many motivated and impressive students keen to apply to the firm. In a few weeks, I’ll be giving a presentation on our BProud group to incoming vacation scheme students; I’m looking forward to speaking about my experience in the group so far! Additionally, I am part of the committee involved with planning Bristol Pride 2023. Burges Salmon sponsors and marches in the Edinburgh and Bristol parades annually, and I can’t wait to participate this year.

What are the benefits of being involved with the networks?

I have found the best part of being involved with BProud to be meeting new people within the firm, regardless of role or department, many of whom have had similar experiences to myself. It is extremely valuable to be able to engage with people who share the same passions, and are all keen to grow our community. My participation in this group has exposed me to the broader LGBT+ network within Bristol, which I would not have been as aware of without BProud. Additionally I have learned a great deal more about LGBT+ history and culture, which has been great for my own personal interest. It is also fantastic to be part of the broader BGroup network, and be able to engage with intersectional issues that affect a great number of us both in and outside the firm.

What would you like to tell other people who are considering applying to BS?

On a personal level, I wanted to be at a firm that was inclusive, intellectually stimulating and was within a city with a great LGBT+ presence; Burges Salmon ticked every box. I have been involved with some fascinating projects during my time as a trainee so far, and have felt fully supported in the departments I’ve worked in. If you are looking for a firm that is people focused, offers interesting work, as well as being passionate about fostering a culture that celebrates different perspectives and backgrounds, this is the firm for you!

Contributed by Victoria McCarron, trainee solicitor and member of BProud, our LGBT+ people-led network.

Key contact

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Chris Jenkinson Resourcing Business Partner

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