Oana is a Romanian Law student at the Transilvania University Braşov
As a law student, it’s quite difficult to find an internship best suited for my qualifications. Nobody is really willing to help law students improve their skills and gain knowledge in their field of study. There are very few internships for us and 99% of them aren’t paid, which only makes things worse for us.
It’s quite difficult to find such an internship if you don’t live in Bucharest, where all the big law firms are. And if you do find an internship in Bucharest, you have to be able to find accommodation on your own, because nobody is going to pay for your trouble.
In Romania, if you don’t have money or relatives with connections, you are truly in a very difficult situation. It’s really unfair and frustrating, but this is the reality. Everybody who studies law knows that what you study in school is not enough for you to become a great lawyer, prosecutor, judge and so on. You have to be able to use your knowledge in practical cases, you need to be challenged and improve your logical skills.
I don’t understand why people with experience always criticize young graduates and say that they are poorly prepared. It’s their responsibility to help us learn and become experts, but they choose to ignore our requests for internships.
The only paid internship I know about is the one organized by the Romanian Government in Bucharest. Even so, what the Government pays the interns is merely enough for them to buy food for a month, which is fine, as long as they live in Bucharest. I don’t live in Bucharest, so if I want to apply for that internship, I have to arrange for accommodation and live in Bucharest for two months. Then I have to pay for transportation, to come home every weekend.
In fact, I’m glad this internship exists, maybe some big law firms will follow the Government’s example and organize better paid internships.
However, this sad situation doesn’t apply to students at technical universities. For example, those who study computer science have a wide variety of highly paid internships to choose from, because their field is more practical and big companies are very open-minded to beginners.
I wish it could be the same for us, the law students. I know, law is not such a modern science, it’s not like we can invent new technology or design robots. But still, our field of study is a fundamental aspect of the entire society. No matter what business you have or what you do for fun, you need to obey the law. We, as students, have to learn the law and be able to practice it for others who need it.
So why are we so left behind when it comes to internships? That’s just how things are and for the time being, we can’t really do anything about it. We just have to wait and hope that law firms and national institutions will pay more attention to us. In the meantime, we can only apply to a few internships, do our best to learn as much as we can and have our parents support us until we graduate.