Page published on 11th July 2023
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For four weeks during June and July 2023, we were joined by Ayaan Ali, an intern funded by law firm Clifford Chance as part of their “LIFT” scheme for newly-appointed trainees. Ayaan was primarily tasked with promoting our Summer of IP outreach campaign, but also found time to meet with several IP professionals from our communities, Advisory Board and management team. She also wrote the following post for us, reflecting on her time with IP Inclusive.
Hi, I’m Ayaan, a future trainee solicitor at Clifford Chance. I have been fortunate to be interning at IP Inclusive for the last four weeks, and it has proved to be a fantastic opportunity in not only advancing the diversity and inclusion work within the IP sector, but also being able to develop key transferable skills that will benefit me throughout my career.
My main role during the past month was working on the launch of our new campaign, the Summer of IP. The main purpose of this campaign is to introduce students, graduates and career changers into the IP sector, by providing introductory talks and employer events to inform them about the wide variety of professions available in IP. As someone who greatly benefitted from the work of social mobility organisations such as the Sutton Trust in helping me to access not only university but also my future career path, I was excited to be working on the campaign and contributing to widening access to the IP sector. I was largely tasked with the marketing and promotion of the campaign to ensure we could get as many people as possible aware and excited to be a part of the first ever Summer of IP.
As part of my role, I firstly made sure to reach out to as many universities, schools, social mobility organisations and recruiters as possible to spread the word about the campaign and encourage as many people as possible to sign up.
I was also in charge of relaunching the Careers in Ideas Instagram account and ensuring we had all the up-to-date information about our campaign on social media. Whilst this was initially a daunting project as someone with no social media experience, I found content creation and developing new ways to communicate and advertise the campaign to be a really enjoyable task. Additionally, I wrote several articles and blog posts for organisations such as the UK Intellectual Property Office (to send out to schools), the University of Kingston and IP sector recruiters, as well as for our own Careers in Ideas website.
Being given such varied tasks as well as a large amount of autonomy in my role enabled me to develop my time and project management skills. I was given plenty of responsibility in terms of liaising with various “clients”, including universities and organisations, as well as creative freedom to take the lead on certain projects such as the Instagram page.
I also had the opportunity to meet and network with various IP professionals, who graciously offered to meet with me and talk about their career journeys, to offer me helpful advice and let me know about the work they do. I am extremely thankful for all of these conversations which will prove invaluable in figuring out my next steps in my legal career and the different avenues which are open to me. I was also able to participate in an IP & ME coffee date, which was an informal online event with IP professionals from a minority ethnic background (and their allies) to share their experiences in the sector. This was a great opportunity to see the fantastic work IP Inclusive does to further inclusion and equality in IP, and the safe spaces they provide for professionals to talk about their thoughts.
From this experience, I have been able to develop skills such as communication, in learning how to adapt my writing for different audiences. Equally, I have become a more independent worker and someone who is more comfortable taking the initiative on various tasks; working remotely has encouraged me to take greater responsibility and develop skills such as time management and to organise my own work. Lastly, I have really been able to identify with IP Inclusive’s mission, in terms of how a not-for-profit organisation works and specifically the invaluable work it does in encouraging growth in the EDI sector for IP organisations.
I am so grateful to the team at IP Inclusive, particularly Andrea Brewster, for welcoming me and allowing me to have had a great experience during my past month as an intern. I have developed numerous skills that I will carry with me throughout my career, and continue to support the main mission of promoting diversity and inclusion throughout the legal profession.