Getting to Work!

Greetings from Dublin! I have just completed my third week in Dublin and my first week of interning at the law firm. Even though I’ve been here for a while now, I’m still in awe of this city and all that it has to offer. 

I’ve been excited to develop a routine. I take a bus to get to the general area of my internship about an hour early and read in a local cafe, a compromise between my anxiety-prone self and the cultural norms of exact promptness in Ireland. This has eased my concerns about being late, while also giving me the chance to see local cafes and read some good books! 

This week marked the beginning of our internships in the program, and I have loved meeting my coworkers and fellow interns at the law firm. There were two other interns who started at the same time as me, one from France and one from Dublin. It’s been great to get to know them and learn to navigate the office together. Everyone at the office has been so friendly and helpful in easing my transition into the office.

It’s been so interesting to learn about the Irish workplace firsthand. The offices here are more relaxed than in the U.S., which has made for a very welcoming and warm environment. Law firms are a bit more formal than the standard office here, but it’s been nice to get an idea of the office culture here. In terms of work at the office this week, we had a lot to do, but it mostly consisted of scanning and filing. While this work is necessary, it can become a bit monotonous. I have, however, become remarkably good at using a staple remover (it’s an art form, really). We also review surveillance footage and take notes to aid in some cases the firm is working on. Next week, though, I will have the opportunity to go to court and watch a trial! I’ve gotten to see the courthouses a few times to drop off and pick up paperwork, but it will be interesting to see it in action.

Outside of the internship, I’ve had the chance to explore some exciting places! This weekend, my friends and I went to Belfast, Northern Ireland on a day trip. We visited Saint George’s Market, the Titanic Museum, and explored the city. We’ve also been keeping busy in Dublin– earlier this week, we saw Waitress, the musical, which was absolutely lovely. We’ve also continued to try new restaurants and seek out new parts of the city to explore. 

Time management is a critical life skill, and I’ve been practicing it both in and out of my internship. In my internship, I strive to be as productive as possible to help the office the most I can. The other interns and I have developed several methods to work efficiently at getting our tasks done. With the filing and scanning processes, we often each work on a different task and then rotate positions. There are also other assignments that come up throughout the day, and we take turns completing those. The scanning process involves us working our way through thousands of closed files, which can seem daunting at times, but our cohesion in accomplishing the tasks thus far makes me optimistic about this summer-long endeavor of scanning, in addition to the more substantive tasks we’ll need to do later on!

Time management has also been an important concept for life in Dublin generally. I want to explore as much as I possibly can and optimize my time here, but it’s important to balance this with work and adequate rest. The way I’ve managed to do this on work days is by walking from the office to the City Centre and walking around there for a bit before heading back to campus for the evening. 

I am looking forward to continuing the internship and being introduced to more elements of the Irish legal system, and I’m particularly excited to watch the court session this upcoming week. I’m also so excited to continue getting to know people at the office, who are so friendly. I’m learning more about the city from them already, and we’ve had fascinating discussions about the similarities and differences between Ireland, the United States, and other European countries. I feel very comfortable in the city, and it’s beginning to feel much more familiar to me. I can’t wait to see more in Dublin and elsewhere.