My experience as a trainee

I had not considered a career in law until I gained an insight into a pharmaceutical patent litigation case during my master’s studies and found the interaction of law and science interesting. I studied Psychology as an undergraduate in Iceland followed by graduate degrees in Neuroscience in London. My work had a heavy focus on novel analgesics, and although I enjoyed bench science, I realised that it was not the career for me. I was attracted to law as a way of applying the analytical and subject matter skills I had gained in my studies while retaining a connection to life sciences. Law seemed like a logical step forward, and I converted to law by undertaking the GDL.

Bristows stood out to me as a firm where I could put my background to good use while working at the intersection of life sciences and technology. I was attracted by the reputation of high-quality training and level of responsibility given to trainees. I attended an Open Day at Bristows and enjoyed the friendly atmosphere and diverse backgrounds of the associates and partners I met. Before starting the training contract, the firm kept in regular contact and enabled our trainee intake to get to know each other before starting work.

Over the last year, I have gained experience in commercial law and data protection, in addition to patent litigation, where I have seen cases from the issue of a claim to the conclusion of a trial. I have found my scientific background useful in the matters I have worked on, whether centered on litigation of pharmaceutical patents, innovative use of healthcare data, or commercialisation of emerging technologies. In addition, the partners were highly supportive of a pro bono project I worked on where I had high levels of responsibility, whilst supervision was always at hand.

Alex Magnusdottir

Trainee Solicitor


  • BA Psychology, University of Akureyri, Iceland
  • MSc Neuroscience, University College London
  • PhD Neuroscience, Royal Veterinary College, University of London
  • GDL, BPP Law School
  • LPC, BPP Law School

Hear from other Bristows trainees