08 May, 2009

New OLPAS form read as thoroughly?

I was chatting with the barrister I was clerking, yesterday, and it turns out that she is on the pupillage committee for her chambers.

In terms of the number of interviews in the provinces v London, she said that in her set they get about 400 applications for 3 pupillages. They interview about 20 people. I'd be interested to hear more on how many interviews other London sets offer relative to the number of applicants.

The other discussion we had was on the new OLPAS form. I complained that as it was longer, surely pupillage committees could not afford to spend as much time on each form and so it would be read less thoroughly. She completely disagreed saying that she reads each form, in full and just does 1 hour worth of form read each night. She observed that actually, the OLPAS timetable means that chambers do have plenty of time to review forms thoroughly and that given how important the forms are to the applicant, she said she found it important to read each one thoroughly.

Comforting to know on one level, if only my form wasn't so rubbish!

07 May, 2009

Pupillage statistics: London v Provincial

Interestingly, it turns out one of my pupillage providers is less competitive than I had anticipated.

They have just sent me an email telling me that my form has been printed and who will be considering it - which is a nice touch in itself as it gives a warm fuzzy glow of positive progress before the inevitable rejection - but they have also been kind enough to tell people the odds.

There aree roughly 250 applications of whom they will interview 80 people.

Perhaps it's because this is the first time I've applied to London, but I'm pleasantly surprised. I get the impression that regional chambers tend to interview only about 10% of applicants. Whilst one of the reasons my London friends have far more interviews than me is no doubt their excellent CVs (including things like FRU, which we in the -impoverished - 'dark satanic mill' - cities of the North students can only dream of), perhaps part of the discrepancy is because London chambers interview more candidates.

Of course, I am basing this all on a single application - but I would be very interested to hear your thoughts and experiences on this one.

Or, of course, just plan scandal and rumour!

06 May, 2009

OLPAS clearing

What are you all doing re: the OLPAS clearing application when it comes to the various mini essays?

I can change many of mine to be fairly generic, but am currently unsure what to do about the 'why this chambers' section.

Provisionally, I have just written 'CLEARING' in the box and left it at that - but my clearing form isn't yet submitted so can change.

Other approaches?

05 May, 2009

OLPAS score 5.5.09

As I stayed up until 2 am on the original deadline date to finish my apps (falling asleep on the computer) I was both pleased and disappointed that the deadline was subsequently extended. By the time I fell asleep, I had done 8 applications. Luckily, I started with the ones I wanted the most as the final ones were not good!

The next day I was at a hearing which meant I did not have any internet access - hence what was for me the relative forward planning in finishing the majority the night before.

Midmorning, I then received a text from a friend telling me the deadline had been extended until the next day. I was then told that my hearing was adjourning until the next day to allow time for decisions to be made, so I went back to the office and filled in two more applications following recommendations from people in the office.

My slight disappointment with the deadline extension is therefore the idea that of the eight applications I originally made, I could have filled in the last 4 far better if I had not been so tired when typing - knowing about the extension earlier would have meant I would have left them for the next morning.

So, the OLPAS score currently stands at: 10 apps sent, 1 print off, 9 nil responses