Youngsters given taster of pathway into law industry

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PROMISING students have been given a taste of life in the legal profession.

Portsmouth College pupils took part in a work experience scheme run by Southampton law firm Blake Morgan.

Ten students from colleges across Hampshire took part in the Pathways to Law programme.

The programme gives promising young students a clear idea of what it takes to follow a career in law – and the opportunity to spend some time in a work environment.

Cathy Pearce, training officer at Blake Morgan, said: ‘Pathways to Law gives the young people a real feel for what life is like in a law firm and in the world of work.’

This year’s scheme involved students aged 16 and 17 from Portsmouth, Waterlooville, Christchurch, Ringwood, Southampton and the Isle of Wight who had were chosen after demonstrating their academic potential and ability in the application process.

During their time at Blake Morgan the youngsters took part in two seminar days when they learned about various aspects of the firm’s work and the skills required for a law career.

They were also given the chance to shadow a trainee solicitor.

‘For some of them it’s quite an eye-opener – they go away with a realisation that to be a lawyer, you don’t just need to know the law – you need to have a host of other skill sets too,’ Mrs Pearce added.

‘This year, as ever, the young people showed enormous potential and maturity. We keep in touch with them – in the past, some have gone on to apply for trainee positions within the firm. We have one former participant who now works at Blake Morgan as a paralegal.

The Pathways to Law scheme is one of a host of mentoring programmes that Blake Morgan runs at its various offices as part of its Making a Difference corporate responsibility campaign.

The firm is a founder of the PRIME Access to Law scheme, which helps young people from less-privileged backgrounds forge a career in law, and also runs mentoring programmes for university students.