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From summer associate to first-year associate
Roxane reflects on the last twelve months in New York

Remember Roxane Picard? Following her successful summer associate program experience, she joined the Firm as an associate in our New York office. We caught up with her to find out about what's she's been working on over the past 12 months.

Tell us about the highlights of your first year as an associate

One highlight was working on the hedging aspects of a large project financing that was the quintessential White & Case experience. It involved White & Case offices in São Paulo, New York and Miami, as well as parties from the US, Brazil, Canada and France. The Firm hosted in-person negotiations for a week earlier this year, which was an amazing learning experience.

In addition, working with the same client on two transactions across two different groups was a real highlight. We represented them as a corporate borrower in one transaction, under the Bank Finance group, and as a foreign issuer in a private placement bond offering in the second transaction, under the Capital Markets group. You get to know the client really well, and it's a good opportunity to understand your worth as a junior associate. You are very close to the details—if you pay attention, you are very valuable to your team. Don't underestimate that!

Most recently, I was able to deliver a training on prime brokerage agreements and how to negotiate them alongside a partner to a team of negotiators at a major commercial bank. Other than practicing aloud to myself leading up to the day, the process involved overseeing a wonderful summer associate who diligently put together from scratch a 100-slide presentation on the topic. It's never too early to learn how to delegate work and manage people and projects.

We're an international law firm – how have you experienced this in your work?

All the time! In my matters at the moment, clients are based in Argentina, Australia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom (to name a few). Cross-border work is exciting and you're constantly learning new things, but it also means working in multiple time zones! Just a few weeks ago, I was on a 5:00 a.m. Saturday call with a client based in London.

What's been most surprising about your experience over the past year?

You are not limited to your "class year" – if you demonstrate that you can handle the work, you will be given a lot of responsibility.

What are your top-five tips for anyone applying for a summer associate position in the US?

1. Know your résumé – Build a solid narrative on why working at a law firm (White & Case specifically) makes sense given your educational and employment trajectory up until this point

2. Learn about White & Case practice areas – Be able to speak about why you are interested in White & Case over other firms (see no. 3, which is a very important step to achieve this—websites and Vault rankings make most top firms look the same)

3. Reach out to summer associates and associates at White & Case and chat with them about their experiences – People who have gone to your undergraduate institution or law school are a good first place to start

4. Keep track of interactions (see no. 3), including valuable insight you may have learned – If you end up interviewing with White & Case, you can bring up some of those conversations and weave them into why you believe White & Case is a good fit for you

5. Value your life experiences that do not translate to paper – This process is as much about connecting with someone else (whether that person is reading your résumé or interviewing you) as it is about trying to get a job.

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