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Career advice and recruitment tips from Moscow associate Anastasia

For Moscow associate Anastasia Sheyndlina, getting to know White & Case started at university. 

"White & Case had a prominent presence at our biannual university career fairs and also held several lecture courses for students each year. In my second year of studies, I got involved in some of White & Case's educational initiatives—the first one being the annual Professional Responsibility and Ethics in the Global Legal Market course. Some of the seminars were held at White & Case's Moscow office, and several sessions were moderated and hosted by White & Case partners and associates. 

Later on, I became an avid participant in White & Case's university lecture program — I attended the courses devoted to Capital Markets, Real Estate, International Taxation… all of which were absolutely fascinating! Broadly speaking, I've known quite early on that I wanted to specialize in transactional law—but the White & Case lectures really helped me to get a better grasp of each of the practice groups and find the ones I'm most interested in. The Capital Markets lecture course was particularly enlightening and sparked a great deal of interest in the area.

Talk us through your application, interview and recruitment process.

“Overall, the selection process was very transparent and smooth”

I submitted my application with the standard set of documents (cover letter, CV and an essay on one of the proposed topics) in March during my third year of studies. First, I went through the HR interview (which was mainly aimed at getting to know me better as a person) and the written legal research assignment; then, I was invited for an interview with associates from the Capital Markets and M&A/Corporate groups (the practice groups I have specifically mentioned in my application materials)—this round was primarily focused on testing my knowledge of the law and legal reasoning skills. 

At the final stage, I interviewed with partners from the respective groups. The partners are keen to assess your substantive knowledge and legal prowess, but they are equally interested in learning more about your hobbies and background and assessing whether you are a good fit for the team. Overall, the selection process was very transparent and smooth.

Tell us a little about your work and responsibilities.

“What I love most about working in Capital Markets is the unique mix of business and law that is at play here”

I am mostly working on equity and debt capital markets transactions of Russian and CIS companies—that is, I assist issuers and underwriters on IPOs/SPOs, Eurobond issues and liability management exercises. As a junior member of the team, I have enjoyed the opportunity to work on all of the key aspects of capital markets transactions. My day-to-day work primarily involves drafting and commenting on prospectus disclosures, doing due diligence, preparing drafts of basic transaction documents and legal opinions, and communicating with clients, auditors and the other side's counsel on various matters in the course of a transaction.

What I love most about working in Capital Markets is the unique mix of business and law that is at play here. It's always exciting to get to know something about new companies and industries, and you actually get to learn a lot about the business side of the deal while being involved as a legal advisor. From a lawyer's perspective, Capital Markets work is incredibly interesting, fast-paced and challenging in the best possible way—the regulatory environment is very dynamic, and you also have to be quite well versed in general corporate matters and related areas of the law.

What advice would you have for a law student considering a career at White & Case?

As a basic tip, study hard—having solid knowledge of the law is very important for getting through the selection process successfully! Further, do get involved in extracurricular activities—join moot court teams or other clubs which genuinely interest you and to which you can make a meaningful contribution. Also, try to participate in White & Case's educational initiatives and get to meet the White & Case team at career fairs or similar events.

Importantly, take some time to consider which practice groups you would like to join; it is understandably difficult to figure out what exactly you want to do while you still hadn't been exposed to real projects, but doing some research (for instance, by regularly catching up on business press and staying abreast of updates in the industry) would give you an edge in the interviewing process.

“I think that every deal I’ve worked on has contributed to my professional development in its own way.” 

Tell us the highlights of your career and time at White & Case so far.

I think that every deal I've worked on has contributed to my professional development in its own way. That being said, I think that the most exciting and memorable projects were those where I had to step out of my comfort zone and work on assignments which were new to me or which involved a higher degree of autonomy. 

Of course, reading about the projects you had been working on in major business publications is also very rewarding and inspires you to work even harder to become an excellent lawyer down the road—the high-profile nature of the work is another key factor which sets White & Case apart!

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