Spotlight on new lawyers groups: Part 2 Trainee and Newly Qualified Society
In the second of our series looking at groups who offer advice, run events tailored to new lawyers and support those at the early stages of a career in law, we spoke to Andrew Bergin of the Trainee and Newly Qualified Society (TANQ) to find out what they have on offer.
Andrew is a solicitor practicing pursuer personal injury with Digby Brown LLP based in their Glasgow office.
What's your role within your organisation and how did you initially join?
Andrew: I initially started attending the TANQ society events as a trainee. I saw it as a good opportunity to meet people at a similar stage to me and as an invaluable source of free TCPD. When a position on the committee became available I took the opportunity and applied. Fortunately I was successful. As a committee member I help organise the events which TANQ offers as well as promoting the benefits of TANQ & RFPG (Royal Faculty of Procurators in Glasgow) membership.
What has been the most beneficial aspect of being a part of your organisation?
Andrew: Having the opportunity to meet many young and aspiring lawyers and discussing the issues which new entrants to the profession face. TANQ events provide great opportunities to meet judges, sheriffs, advocates and well respected members of the legal profession. Donald Findlay QC and the Solicitor General, Lesley Thompson QC are just two of our recent speakers.
What has been your favourite event so far and why?
Andrew: The summer social events are a favourite of mine. Everyone has a good time, even the invited guests. Everyone has the opportunity to mingle and chat informally and our guests are more than happy to answer questions.
How do you support new lawyers in the early stages of their career?
Andrew: We provide free CPD opportunities covering a range of issues from updates regarding the most recent developments in the law to soft skills that can benefit their future careers.
We arrange our events to coincide with our membership needs and current affairs. For example, TANQ organised an independence debate prior to the referendum where two of our members had the opportunity to work alongside the advocates preparing arguments. We plan to hold a similar event on the impending EU membership referendum in the new year.
What would be your advice for new lawyers looking to improve their network?
Andrew: There’s only one way to do it – get out there and speak to people. Ask questions, be interested in learning about other people and remember to listen!
What’s next for the organisation?
Andrew: This has been a fantastic Year for RFPG and TANQ. We won the prestigious Training Provider of the Year at the Scott & Co Legal Awards and Faculty of the Year at the Law Awards.
We are looking forward to our series of events for the remainder of the year culminating in the much anticipated Christmas social on 3rd December 2015. Check out our events page for details. Alongside our programme of events we are building on our relationships with the Law Society of Scotland and local universities to help tackle the issues facing new entrants to the legal profession.
How can new lawyers find out about your upcoming events?