Cooley in London
Training at Cooley
Applying to train in London
Our application process
Table of contents
Diversity, equity and inclusion
Can you Be Cooley?
Pay and benefits
An award-winning firm
‘Training with Cooley in London will be about a breadth of experience and opportunity – being challenged to achieve more than you may have thought possible and enhanced by
being surrounded by a collaborative and brilliant team.’
About Cooley Cooley provides the opportunity to be part of a collaborative and diverse culture, representing the most innovative companies in the world. We handle game-changing deals, groundbreaking IP matters and business-critical litigation across a wide array of dynamic industries, while at the same time counselling startups and entrepreneurs poised to become the business and technology leaders of the future.
Justin Stock London managing partner
Dating back to 1920, Cooley has a rich history in the US, where we are renowned for our work on transformative deals, complex IP and reg- ulatory matters, and high-stakes litigation, where innovation meets the law. Cooley is known for our work with tech and life sciences companies throughout the world. In 2015, Cooley established our first European office in London, bringing a profile of legal experience sup- porting and protecting innovation and technology around the world. Integration and ensuring that everyone understands they have a part to play are critical to the continued success of the London office and the firm’s further growth.
Cooley in London As a global city – a centre of finance and a hub for technology, innovation and creativity – London is a natural fit for Cooley’s international clients and for the firm’s strategic global growth. The office now has more than 110 lawyers in our new base at 22 Bishopsgate. The office provides corporate legal advice on domestic and cross- border mergers and acquisitions, capital markets transactions, debt finance, and private equity and venture capital financings. The firm has deep experience in advising high-growth disruptive technology and life sciences companies as general corporate counsel at all stages of a company’s life cycle. Additionally, the London office has teams advising on technology transactions, cyber/data/privacy, competition, intellectual property, compensation and benefits, employment, and tax matters. Our London-based litigators have considerable experience in complex domestic and cross-border litigation, international arbitration, and regulatory matters. They have handled litigation in all commercial divisions of the English High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court and Court of Justice of the European Union, and represented clients in all major international arbitration proceedings. We offer a wealth of experience in major international asset disputes, including advising governments on their anti-corruption agencies in seeking to trace, freeze and recover corruptly acquired assets of dishonest public officials, along with advising major private companies. Our white collar crime team acts for business executives in connection with high-profile and sensitive global investigations. With a client-first approach and an uncompromising focus on the highest levels of knowledge and responsiveness, Cooley’s product compliance and liability team provides a unique level of support for product manufacturers navigating the rapidly changing international regulatory and liability risk landscape.
‘The office is really collaborative … everyone supervising my work has been extremely generous with their time and patient in getting me up to speed, and I have never felt left out of any conversation big or small. That leaves you with the feeling that you can contribute like an equal stakeholder from very early on. Trainees are an integral part of any deal team and do actual, meaningful work. Everyone at Cooley is keen to get you client contact as early as you want it, and as often as it makes sense.’
Arda Tekin Second-year trainee Current seat: Life Sciences
Training at Cooley We believe in learning by doing, and trainees will be involved in real work from the start. Cooley trainees are often pleasantly surprised by the level of responsibility they have on the matters assigned to them. Cooley’s two-year training programme will be divided into four seats of six months each. This will likely include at least one business litigation seat, where work could involve general commercial, products, employment or IP matters. Other seats will be in noncontentious corporate commercial/transactional areas, where work could involve M&A, private equity and venture capital, life sciences, finance matters, capital markets, technology transactions, and compensation and benefits. Seat options may evolve over time and in response to Cooley’s commercial business needs, but we work to ensure trainees obtain experience in the areas of greatest interest to them. Trainees will be supervised by lawyers at varying levels of seniority, as the experiences can be different but equally valuable to each trainee’s development. In addition to organising and supporting trainees through the Professional Skills Course, Cooley has developed a comprehensive training programme delivered by associates, partners and the professional development team at the firm. The aim is to enable trainees to develop practice-based skills and knowledge in our key areas, in addition to professional skills covering topics such as professional brand, presence and impact, building relationships in a hybrid environment, and collaborating effectively at work. The support network at Cooley is extensive: Trainees have an assigned supervisor, a trainee buddy in the year above, a partner mentor, the legal talent team, the professional development team, and the training principal to help and encourage progress and growth.
US Law Firm of the Year and highly commended in the Commercial Litigation Team of the Year category at the Legal Business Awards 2022
Shortlisted for Life Sciences Team of the Year and M&A Team of the Year (Medium Deal) at the British Legal Awards 2022
Shortlisted for City Firm of the Year at The Lawyer Awards 2020
Highly commended distinction for Transatlantic Firm of the Year at the 2020 British Legal Awards
International Firm of the Year at The Lawyer Awards 2018
Highly recommended in eight categories and 20 lawyers ranked by Chambers UK
20 practice areas recommended and 29 London office lawyers ranked (for a total of 47 individual recognitions) by The Legal 500 UK
London office recognised by The Legal 500’s Future Lawyers trainee solicitor survey as a winning firm across eight categories
Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For, 100 Best Workplaces for Women and 100 Best Workplaces for Millennials
One of the 50 Best Law Firms for Women by Seramount (formerly Working Mother)
Women in Law Empowerment Forum Gold Standard Certification
Excellence in Pro Bono award by The Law Society for outstanding work on The Statelessness Project
Professional development The professional development team is dedicated to helping lawyers unlock their full potential to be their personal and professional best. Cooley’s approach to professional development promotes the mindsets and habits of successful lawyers. By focusing on individualised, authentic development, we help lawyers leverage their personal strengths and align their personal values with Cooley’s strategy. Substantive legal education Ongoing, coordinated learning Across all Cooley practice groups and offices, formal training helps lawyers continually develop and hone their legal skills.
Academies and workshops Learning with, from and about each other
Focused on skills critical to each stage of a lawyer’s career, Cooley’s academies and workshops are designed for interactive peer-to-peer learning that fosters social integration and actionable outcomes.
‘From the first day of my training contract, I have felt that everyone I worked with greatly valued me. For instance, the associates are always very generous with their time in briefing me on matters, providing feedback to me and constantly keeping an eye out on interesting matters they could get me involved in. I couldn’t have asked for a more collegiate environment to train in!’ Alice Wong Second-year trainee Current seat: Compensation & Benefits
‘Being part of a small intake at Cooley, I often felt like I was being given real responsibility. The pace was often quick, and it sometimes seemed like being thrown in at the deep end, but the learning opportunities that resulted were unique. When you add to this the vibrant pro bono programme and fun, collegiate atmosphere, it makes for an excellent training programme.’ Morgan McCormack Qualified into Cyber/Data/Privacy Autumn 2022
Coaching Creative, confidential conversations
Cooley’s culture promotes lifelong learning. Our bespoke coaching service personalises the learning process so professional goals are achieved through personal ownership.
Digital learning On demand and just in time Cooley offers snackable, relevant, and actionable content in a variety of formats that are ready when and where you are. Shadowing and mentoring On the shoulders of giants Learn alongside the best at Cooley – and get insights from those who have traveled further down the road.
Applying to train in London Cooley recruits trainees two years in advance and exclusively through its summer programme. If you want to be considered for a training contract starting in August 2025, you will need to apply for our 2023 summer programme. Applications need to be submitted by 15 January 2023 (you will be asked to indicate if you can commence your training in August 2024 during the application process). You are encouraged to submit your application well in advance. Reviewing applications and shortlisting may begin just ahead of the deadline, but we do not assess applications on a rolling basis. Shortlisted applicants can expect to hear from the firm within three weeks of the application deadline, with all applicants being informed of their final status within a month of the deadline. Cooley’s London office will be transitioning to the SQE pathway for those trainees commencing in 2024 and beyond.
Alice Wong Second-year trainee University College of London Politics and East European Studies
Arda Tekin Second-year trainee University College of London Law
Max Lees Second-year trainee Cardiff University French and Spanish
Carolina Ljungwaldh Second-year trainee University of Southampton Law with International Legal Studies
Jack Eastwood Second-year trainee Cambridge University Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic
Arsalan Shamsuddin First-year trainee University of Warwick Politics, Philosophy and Economics
Submit your application: https://cooley.grad.allhires.com
Academic requirements Cooley’s academic requirements are a minimum 2.1 at degree level for any discipline and 128 UCAS points (ABB at A Level) or equivalent, not to include points from AS levels or general studies. We will accept applications from individuals who do not meet these requirements if they have clear and valid mitigating circumstances – and have otherwise demonstrated excellence at another point in their academic or professional history. Law school support For those who secure a training place prior to the start of law school, Cooley will pay the fees and will provide a living allowance of £15,500 per annum.
Mo Swart First-year trainee London School of Economics International Relations
Shehzad Akram First-year trainee University of Southampton Law
Gloriya Andonova First-year trainee University of Westminster Law
Olivia Anderson First-year trainee Cambridge University Law
‘Cooley has been a fantastic place to learn and develop. Partners and associates go out of their way to give context and provide clear explanations, as well as make you feel like a valued member of the Cooley family.’ Monica Mylordou Associate Qualified into Business Litigation September 2020
Our application process If you are successful at the initial application stage, you will then take an online appraisal designed to assess your critical thinking skills. Candidates who perform most impressively will be invited to a half-day assessment involving a business case study, which has been designed to give you the opportunity to showcase your skills in teamworking, commercial sense, communication, logic, judgement, creativity and decision-making. Those who demonstrate a high level of ability across our core competency areas will be offered the opportunity to participate in a series of individual interviews with lawyers at varying levels of seniority.
Interviews will consist of a mix of competency and scenario-based questions. In addition, there will likely be a discussion about topics designed to assess your awareness of issues affecting the work of commercial lawyers and their clients. You should be prepared to talk about your interest in Cooley, the work our firm does and the clients with whom we work. The interviews are an opportunity for us to get to know you a little better and to determine how your experiences have prepared you to work in a law firm environment, as well as an opportunity for you to assess whether Cooley is a match for your aspirations, so you should ask questions about what matters to you. If you receive and accept an offer to join Cooley, you will hear from the firm regularly throughout the period before formally joining us. Future trainees are invited to various events, helping them to integrate and grow their connections with people at the firm before starting their training. It is important to us that trainees are included and feel a sense of belonging at Cooley from the beginning.
Summer programme Cooley’s two-week summer programmes (vacation schemes) involve a combination of hands-on work on active matters, shadowing other trainees, dynamic skills sessions, talks and social events. With the goal of involving programme participants in client work to the greatest extent possible, individuals may find themselves attending meetings, taking part in conference calls, going to hearings, assisting on deals, conducting research or participating in project work. Our aim is to plan a programme where you will learn and have the opportunity to demonstrate your potential, while simultaneously gaining as much insight as possible into the firm, our people and the work we do.
‘I was made to feel right at home as soon as I arrived at Cooley. Everyone went out of their way to engage with me, lawyers and beyond. This gave me the opportunity to be involved in a variety of exciting work, where I felt a valued member of the team and my voice was always heard. Most importantly, it confirmed that Cooley has a vibrant and supportive culture that I know I will thrive in throughout my future career.’
‘Diverse, supportive and highly thought- provoking is how I would describe my experience on Cooley’s vacation scheme. The focus on inclusivity made me feel immediately comfortable and as though I could bring my full self to the workplace. This provided a fertile environment for me to perform at my best, ask questions and build connections – the firm’s culture really is unparalleled. People at all levels set aside time for feedback and support, and your input feels valued immediately. Being valued in your capacity both as colleague and individual, in addition to the breadth and depth of work I was able to experience, was paramount in my decision to join the firm.’
Amber Fisher (QMUL – Law) 2022 summer programme Starts training in autumn 2023
Pia Pyrtek (QMUL – Law) 2021 summer programme Starts training in autumn 2023
‘We’re devoted to this notion of being creative and entrepreneurial and that is born out of diversity – both diversity of opinion and diversity of background.’
The Cooley UK Diversity Fellowship is a unique chance to gain valuable insights about a career in law with Cooley, with the opportunity to participate in Cooley’s summer programme a year sooner than students are typically eligible to participate. Our summer programme is an essential part of our trainee solicitor recruitment process, as participants are traditionally considered for a training contract at the conclusion of the programme. As Diversity Fellows will be participating in the summer programme a year early, at the conclusion of the programme, they will be considered for participation in the programme again the following year. The two-year approach will provide the opportunity for Diversity Fellows to learn about our work environment, develop relevant skills, and gain invaluable contacts and experience that will enable them to perform to their best when they attend the summer programme in their second year. Award recipients will receive a paid summer programme position and a bursary of up to £12,000 to assist with university/law school tuition. The bursary will be paid in three instalments: £4,000 upon completion of the first summer programme with the firm; £4,000 upon completion of the second summer programme with the firm; and the remaining £4,000 upon joining the firm as a full-time trainee solicitor.
Joe Conroy Chairman and CEO
‘The Diversity Fellowship has been an amazing opportunity to gain invaluable insight into the work Cooley does. Completing the summer programme (one year early) was a unique opportunity to view life at the firm from the inside. Despite only being there for two weeks, I was made to feel comfortable and valued from the first day! The firm’s commitment to fostering and maintaining relationships truly reflects the warm and welcoming culture of the Cooley office.’
Kaycee Barwell 2022 UK Diversity Fellow
Diversity Fellowship eligibility
We welcome applications from all outstanding university students who: • Are enrolled full time in a UK university course at the time of application, with an anticipated graduation date from a UK law school (studying for qualification as a solicitor in England and Wales) no later than 2027 • Demonstrate a commitment to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion within their local communities and/or more broadly • Can participate in and complete Cooley’s 2023 summer programme • Will not receive a diversity award from another law firm paid between 1 January 2023 and 31 August 2023
We will consider only one complete and accurate online application from each applicant, and it must include: • A personal statement of no more than 650 words demonstrating achievement of the selection criteria for the Diversity Fellowship as outlined • Academic transcript (if available) For students in the 2022 – 2023 academic year, applications will open on 1 February 2023 and must be submitted by 15 March 2023. Selected applicants will be contacted after this date for personal interviews. Please direct questions regarding our fellowship to the diversity, equity & inclusion team at firstname.lastname@example.org . ‘Through the fellowship, Cooley provided me with an introduction to commercial law that I not only wanted, but that I needed. In every interaction, from the initial interviews to grabbing coffees with the firm’s lawyers, there is a clearly established culture of inclusivity. Everyone was extremely generous with their time; the firm has fostered a supportive enviroment for Diversity Fellows by presenting a variety of practical learning opportunities. Cooley is invested in diversity and inclusion, as the team has helped me develop professionally and gain confidence to begin a career in law.’
We will consider applicants based on:
• Demonstrated commitment to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion • Sixth form (Years 12 and 13) and university academic achievement • Personal achievement • Demonstrated leadership ability • Community service
Ben Atkinson 2022 UK Diversity Fellow
Cooley culture Cooley is intent on maintaining its standing as one of the world’s greatest law firms, and also on keeping its reputation as a great place to work. We fundamentally believe that the two can, indeed must, go hand in hand. We know that simple things matter – like being thanked and appreciated for your hard work. We invest heavily in preserving our culture as we grow. This is reflected in our dedication to hiring the candidates who demonstrate the traits and values we have identified as central to success at Cooley, such as creativity, entrepreneurial savvy and commitment to collaboration. It is also reflected in how we create the space and time for people to come together to talk, share, celebrate and interact. In London, we have regular Cooley ‘Cool Down’ social time in our wonderful new cafe space, Arthur’s. There have also been numerous planned and impromptu office-wide socials, including summer and winter events, a festive quiz (organised by trainees), and sports teams and matches.
Diversity, equity and inclusion Cooley’s commitment to attracting, mentoring and retaining an exceptional team of lawyers from as many backgrounds as possible is embedded in our culture. We are dedicated to maintaining a truly diverse workplace that values and celebrates differences – from the way we relate to and support each other to the way we work together to meet our clients’ needs. We have several affinity groups at Cooley with active membership in our London office, including the Cooley Inclusion Alliance, Women’s Initiative, and LGBTQ+, Black Attorney and Black Business Professionals, Asian Pacific Islander Attorney, Latinx, and Caregivers Attorney affinity groups. These groups provide resources and networks to support the retention and inclusion of our lawyers. Additionally, a London partner and associate sit on Cooley’s diversity committee, a firmwide committee that meets bimonthly to strategise ways to maintain and strengthen a culture of equity and inclusivity across Cooley. We’re proud of our annual commitment to Pathways to Law, which provides legal work experience to academically able, A-level students from underrepresented backgrounds. In addition, we review summer programme applications on a name-blind basis and conduct behavioural interviewer and unconscious bias training for all our lawyers, directors and managers. We also implement the Rare Contextual Recruitment System as part of our application system. We are excited about what lies ahead in continuing to attract, develop and retain diverse talent at Cooley. Learn more about diversity, equity and inclusion and Cooley’s DEI action plan: www.cooley.com/about/ diversity .
Cooley Beyond 100
Can you Be Cooley? Cooley lawyers are stimulated by solving business and legal challenges. The work we do is complex, so our lawyers must relish developing the intellectual and analytical mastery needed to find difficult answers to thorny questions. We’re seeking candidates who share this passion, as well as an appreciation of how to develop effective business and working relationships. In addition, applicants should be able to demonstrate:
In addition to attending university and national law fairs and events (both in person and virtual), we will be hosting ‘Meet Cooley’ insight days. The first event will take place in person on 15 December 2022 and is aimed at those who are considering applying for our 2023 summer programme. Priority will be given to those who have reached at least their penultimate year of a law degree or final year of a non-law degree. The second event will take place in April or May 2023 (the date will be published on the website over the coming weeks) and is aimed at those who are at an earlier stage in their academic pathway. Priority will be given to those who haven’t applied for the summer programme/ training contract. These events are a great opportunity to get meaningful insight into the firm, learn more about our practice areas and get a feel for our culture. In addition, networking with our lawyers will help you decide if the working environment is right for you and if you can see yourself developing your career here.
• Motivation and initiative • Communication skills and leadership • Service orientation and work ethic
• Superior judgement and problem-solving skills • Commitment, enthusiasm and team spirit • Professionalism
‘Meet Cooley’ deadlines: December 2022 event: 20 November 2022 April/May 2023 event: 28 February 2023
Pay and benefits The starting salary is £52,000, rising to £57,000 in second year of training. The newly qualified salary is £150,000. Other benefits include:
An award-winning firm
Cooley’s London office was a winning firm across eight categories in The Legal 500’s Future Lawyers trainee solicitor survey .
• Modern Health employee assistance program • Fertility treatment • Childcare vouchers • Sports, social and celebratory events • Well-being programme
• 25 days of annual leave • Gym membership subsidy • Season ticket loan • Critical illness insurance • Private medical insurance • Life assurance • Pension scheme and firm contribution
Sarah Warnes Trainee recruitment & legal talent manager Rachael Driscoll Legal talent assistant
Cooley (UK) LLP 22 Bishopsgate London EC2N 4BQ +44 (0) 20 7583 4055
Claire Temple Partner & training principal
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