Internship experiences - opinion article by Zsófia Végh

August 29, 2022 | Vocational

We launched the ECOVIS internship program a year ago. Such a decision always entails certain structural changes.

A young law student in the middle of her studies and development joined our office, who counterbalanced all this with her immeasurable enthusiasm and desire for knowledge from the first moment and she is a valuable member of the team having a delightful character.

In the case of a new colleague, we always weigh how and to what extent he or she contributes to the operation of the organization professionally and personally. The example of Zsófia Végh perfectly shows that everything can be learned and achieved if one has the right attitude. She understood the functioning of our office and the practice groups, and despite the fact that a new routine had to be established in the daily operation and work, Zsófia developed very skillfully and added her own part to it. She got to know her colleagues and realized that there are differences in working methods and in the flow of information - which will be very valuable knowledge when she deals with clients, since we are all human and we all work a little differently.

According to her own words, she was able to utilize her acquired experience in both learning and day-to-day administration, so she gained not only work experience, but also life experience with us, which we are very happy about. But rather, she should tell us herself about what she experienced during this one year, what would be her most important message for those who are thinking about whether it is worth looking for an internship.

Opinion article by Zsófia Végh (ELTE ÁJK):

Why did I become an intern as a third-year law student? During my university studies, I also wanted to acquire relevant practical knowledge so that I could start my legal career with a clearer picture after graduating. It was also an important aspect that the monotony of learning can be broken in this way, and many days and nights spent with studying have an evident result as this knowledge is useful every day. Within the walls of the university, it is relatively difficult to decide what you would like to do, there is no time during education to study each field more intensively, which is why it is beneficial to get a job as an intern while you are still a student.

With such motivations, I looked for an internship opportunity a little more than 1 year ago, and finally, quite by chance, the law firm Ecovis came into the picture through an acquaintance, and shortly after the job interview, we started working together.

What particularly attracted me to Ecovis was that I could get to know several areas of law that were interesting to me. Among my many goals was the fact that I wanted to see how the vast body of knowledge that I acquired at university would be applied in practice; I can use everything I have learned so far; and last but not least, to find out for me whether this is the professional path that I would like to pursue with a diploma in hand.

I think the answer to this last question is that the work we do together has been going on for 1 year, which I would like to continue. During this time, I became richer with a lot of knowledge that can be used in the future.

I help the law firm's professional work by supporting office administration, drafting various documents and submissions, and performing research tasks. In the beginning, I had simpler, less complex tasks, and as time progressed, they became more and more complicated, and thus the tasks assigned to me became more interesting.

The experience I gained here will certainly be of great use to me in my later career, since, for example, the process of various official procedures is not taught at the university, or not in such depth, but in the everyday life of practicing lawyers, we cannot avoid them. Thanks to the tasks where I had to research legislation and various other materials, I learned the ability to select the essence from a larger set of information, which will also be useful for my further studies. This clearly shows that not only does part-time work alongside the university not become a disadvantage of learning, it is actually an advantage. This statement is also supported by the fact that, for example, after writing a real petition, it was much easier for me to learn the relevant part of the curriculum for the given university exam, than it would have been if I had never seen such a thing in practice.

In the past year, it has been regularly confirmed that working as a university student is immediately a real advantage in many ways. On the one hand, the knowledge acquired so far is shed new light, and on the other hand, it provides the ability to filter out what is essential from the learning material to be learned in the future, thus learning more effectively.

After this, what can I say to my fellow students who are now thinking about an internship?

Go ahead! If you happen to like a specific field during your studies, it may be worthwhile to find a job accordingly, but you have to be open and flexible in that if this job does not meet your expectations, then you should be open to other fields as well. Openness is also an advantage from the point of view of approaching tasks that seem monotonous at first in the way that they can add to our professional development. It is also important to see that by starting work, we are entering a completely new life situation, so it may easily happen that everything does not go perfectly right away. However, this should not discourage anyone, the maximum must be given, but time must be allowed to get used to this new situation. The most important qualities that the intern should have in this new situation are openness, firmness and good problem-solving skills.

All in all, I can only recommend employment as an intern to anyone in a similar situation to me, as it can be a clear advantage from a point of view of a later career, but based on what has been explained above, in addition to future opportunities, the acquired practical knowledge will also be useful during university studies.