Why write the pupillage guide?
The primary author of this guide, Beheshteh Engineer, obtained criminal pupillage in the 2017 round on the first attempt and as a candidate from a largely “non-traditional” background.
I had help at every stage of my journey to the Bar: friends in the ‘year above’ dispensed their recently-acquired wisdom, juniors commented upon my draft application form and QCs offered support and encouragement.
Having obtained pupillage, I spent hours commenting on application forms and providing advice on interview preparation to both my friends and acquaintances. I also offered advice on various online forums/groups.
While doing this work, several issues with the pupillage process became clear:
- students don’t know what is required to succeed
- many are not aware of the advice nor the financial support that is on offer
- advice that is given (through a variety of organisations) tends to be generic
- advice given is often conflicting, producing confusion
- some candidates do not really know what the job entails
- some arrive unprepared at interviews
- and it seems as if the competition gets stronger each year.
Having trawled through every resource I could find, it became clear that there was no one single resource of high-quality pupillage advice available.
I therefore decided to create this pupillage guide and Simon Myerson QC suggested that we team up to launch this site/blog.
Simon started Pupillage And How To Get It in 1996, as a page on the web, back in the days before blogs. Its approach was less systematic and, in recent years, it has not been properly maintained or updated. This site aims to make it central to the experience of applying for pupillage again. Simon has been in Silk since 2003 and isn’t nowadays involved in the process of selecting pupils. So he takes a back seat on those bits, operating as a contributing editor and being contentious.