Our summer program provides students an opportunity to experience the practice of law in action. The program, although structured, is designed in a flexible manner to ensure each student’s needs and interests are met. As a student at our office, you’ll work under the guidance of experienced lawyers on interesting files for our clients. You’ll be given real responsibilities and gain real experience. You will also form many professional relationships and friendships—in fact, that will likely be your greatest reward.
The program is structured around a two-rotation schedule based on the following options:
- Corporate and Securities
- Financial Services and Insolvency
- Employment and Pensions
- Commercial Real Estate
Second-year students may wish to expand their experience with a secondment. Opportunities will be matched with your specific interest and may include working at the office of one of our clients, or at a government or quasi-governmental agency, such as the Ontario Securities Commission.
Our in-house shadowing program allows our students to spend the day with one of our clients, or with Dentons alumni currently working as in-house counsel. The program is effective in allowing students to understand the important role played by in-house lawyers and the dynamic business environment in which they work. Understanding our clients is vital to the services we provide to them. As such, opportunities like these are important as you begin your career.
Evaluations are fundamental to your summering experience. While you can expect to receive informal evaluations from the lawyers you will be working with, you will also be formally evaluated on your various assignments. Completed evaluations will be submitted to our Student Committee, followed by a formal evaluation meeting.
We have a number of social events for our students and lawyers, so you have lots of opportunities to get to know your colleagues on an informal basis. Our lawyers enjoy getting to know the students and look forward to these events. We attend sporting and cultural events, play laser tag and Whirlyball, go curling and skating, try different restaurants and much more!
What it’s like to summer at Dentons
What our students say:
Henry Machum, Queens’s University, 2018 Summer Student
Dentons is a fantastic place to work as a summer student and begin a legal career. From day one, the Firm was incredibly invested in the success of the summer students. I felt extremely supported during the summer, as each lawyer went above and beyond to integrate the summer students as an essential part of the Dentons team. My summer mentors always took the time to provide guidance and include me on interesting and complex files. The work was both exciting and challenging, and I was exposed to a wide variety of files, from novel research assignments to mediations to small claims matters. In addition to ensuring students made real and substantive contributions to files, all the lawyers I worked with also made sure that I was able to see my how my contributions were integrated into the final work product.
Lindsay Craig, University of Windsor, 2018 Summer Student
My summer experience at Dentons was invaluable. From the first week of training, it was clear that students are valued members of the firm. I was given a range of meaningful work with lawyers that were eager to teach and follow up to show me the impact my work had on the overall file. I was able to learn hands on through attending client meetings, court appearances, and mediations.
As a whole, the firm is incredibly friendly and approaches work with a team mentality. The firm is innovative and always seeking to improve their practice for the legal concerns of the future. As such, I gained skills, interests, and further curiosity, which has started my legal career on a great note.
Christina Emberley, University of Ottawa, 2018 Summer Student
The people who work at Dentons are not what you might expect from a big Bay Street firm. Each person, no matter the department—from the support staff to senior partners—are all kind, welcoming, and funny. From day one, I have felt a sense of community in Dentons that is truly unique. There is no hidden agenda, no smoke and mirrors: what you see is what you get. In a word, the people here are genuine. They want students to succeed, and will support you every step of the way to ensure you get the most out of your summer experience. But they are genuine in more than just personality, they are also genuine about what is expected of you. Dentons strikes the perfect balance between work and play. With any busy, growing firm, there will be some late nights and occasional weekend work. Dentons does not shy away from that, but embraces it, and shows students why this is such an exciting time to be a part of the firm. There are so many opportunities to learn and apply your skills, and the firm takes the time to get to know you so that you get work in your areas of interest. Dentons appreciates and invests in their students: I will finish my summer feeling like I have contributed to the firm, and like I am a valued member of the team. Though it may go without saying, there is no where else I would rather be!
Ilan Levy, University of Windsor, 2018 Summer Student
My summer experience at Dentons was incredible. From the first day, I was given the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships, take on interesting files and even go to a baseball game with clients. The firm is supportive towards your progress and wants to see you succeed. From the students to the lawyers to the support staff, everyone at Dentons is one team that encourages collaboration and is always available for questions or assistance.
This environment allowed me to establish lasting relationships with both formal and informal mentors. The summer program at Dentons allows for the perfect balance between work, social events, flexibility and learning about the legal profession. It was an amazing summer and the perfect foundation to build my legal career.
Michelle Ling, Osgoode Hall Law School, 2018 Summer Student
While ‘work’ and ‘fun’ are typically viewed as mutually exclusive, my summer experience at Dentons has certainly reshaped this notion for me. From a professional standpoint, I was trusted with multiple tasks on various files, ranging from revising agreements and compiling signature packages to completing research projects. Although I was doing many of the tasks for the first time, there were numerous resources available to assist me.
One of the key resources that I also found to be one of the highlights of my summer experience was the mentorship program. Not only did my mentors take the time to explain concepts to me and answer my questions, but they also took the initiative to check-in on me, making sure that I was being exposed to the work I was interested in and that I was in a healthy state of mind.
In addition to the professional culture was the social aspect of my summer experience, which, too, was memorable on many occasions – one being the Annual Bay Street Volleyball Tournament! Simply put, I was surrounded by supportive colleagues and immersed in a professional, yet social environment; in turn, I had the pleasure of experiencing what it is like when work and fun no longer collide, but are in harmony with one another.
Claire Browne, University of New Brunswick, 2018 Summer Student
My experience working as a summer law student at Dentons Canada LLP has been unforgettable. I thoroughly enjoy working with a diverse team of lawyers, students and legal professionals, on a wide array of legal matters. Dentons creates a warm, positive working environment where students are encouraged to undertake real assignments that are relied upon by our legal team. Although this may sound daunting, the team always ensures that you are able to ask questions and seek clarification where required. What I love most about my experience thus far, is that each day differs from the last and I am always learning something new. During my current rotation, I drafted a memorandum, attended a mediation, participated in a client meeting, attended an arbitration, assisted with facilitating a client seminar, and completed my first court appearance. I cannot wait to see what the rest of the summer will entail.