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Wilsons launches post A level (or equivalent) solicitor apprentice scheme

Date posted: 4 May 2021

Are you an aspiring solicitor, passionate about social justice and making a difference in the world but unsure about the costs of studying law at university? Join our new post A level (or equivalent) apprenticeship programme and train with us to become a solicitor!

 

We’re recruiting three solicitor apprentices to embark on a six year apprenticeship with us, each based in one of our three departments and starting in September 2021. No legal experience or legal qualification are necessary – we are looking for a good academic record and a strong commitment to our areas of work and to completing the six year programme. Read more about the vacancies and download an application pack here – deadline is 4pm on Friday 11 June 2021. The starting salary is £20,750.

 

Our solicitor apprentices will spend four days each week on casework and related tasks, gaining valuable experience in a legal aid firm and developing their legal skills. In the first two years of the apprenticeship they will largely be assisting and shadowing our lawyers, and assisting with legal aid administration, as an initial introduction to legal casework. By Years 3 and 4 we envisage they will be able to conduct legal casework more independently while still under their supervisor’s close guidance. By Year 5 we expect them to progress alongside our trainee solicitors, ready to qualify at the end of Year 6.

 

Alongside that, they will spend one day a week on ‘off-the-job’ training, including preparation for the Solicitors Qualifying Exams, with the University of Law, funded by the government’s apprenticeship scheme with an employer contribution from us, and gaining an LLB along the way.

 

On successful completion they will be admitted to the roll of solicitors.

 

This initiative reflects the firm’s ongoing commitment to breaking down barriers which prevent talented and passionate potential lawyers from accessing the profession: high course fees and other financial pressures; lack of professional contacts, role models and networks; inability to undertake unpaid work experience and internships and so on. We recognise that many of these barriers are impacted by race, class, gender and disability and other factors (and their intersections).

 

In her presidential address on 22 March 2021, on becoming the first person of colour to become President of the Law Society, I. Stephanie Boyce highlighted the importance of solicitors as a force for change, with her first priority being equality, diversity and inclusion and social mobility:

 

Anyone with the necessary skills, knowledge and commitment to become a solicitor should be supported, enabled and empowered to stay in the profession and thrive in this profession for as long as they wish to be a solicitor.

 

It is my mission to leave a profession more diverse and inclusive than the one I entered.

 

It’s very much our hope that this scheme will contribute to this vital mission.

 

We’re hugely grateful to our Ethnic Minority Committee, co-chaired by Nkiru Okafor, Shahailya Stephenson and Sija Dube, for their invaluable support and guidance in establishing the scheme.

 

This post A level (or equivalent) apprenticeship scheme follows the introduction in February 2021 of our shorter graduate solicitor apprenticeship scheme – more about that here and more information about hosting solicitor apprenticeships here.

 

For any questions about apprenticeships at Wilsons please contact our Public Law partner Katy Robinson.