DAS Law has welcomed a new intake to its innovative Graduate Academy with seven aspiring lawyers joining the 2018 apprenticeship programme at the Bristol-based firm.
Starting in September, the academy takes the form of a three-year apprenticeship scheme which enables law graduates to embark on a legal career without the uncertainties of securing a formal training contract.
Using funding from the government’s apprenticeship scheme, the academy focuses on learning and development through practical experience. Graduates are given responsibility at an early stage and work towards taking on their own cases within the first year, under the supervision of senior team members.
Alongside learning more about the law and how to apply it, the academy also covers all of the additional skills that graduates will need to build a successful legal career, including a focus on communication, drafting, negotiation, advocacy and client care.
On completion of the course, graduates will become qualified Chartered Legal Executives with the opportunity to join one of DAS Law’s core legal departments - Litigation, Employment, Legal Advice or Personal Injury (PI).
Will Ellerton, Head of Litigation and Dispute Management at DAS Law, said: 'I am very excited about our graduate academy. There is a huge gap in the market for talented law graduates who wish to pursue a structured training course outside the usual solicitor training contract. This scheme is aimed squarely at them and makes use of the government’s apprenticeship levy, which is an excellent but under-used scheme within the legal industry.'
For the first time DAS Law will be formally working with CILEx Law School (CLS) for the provision of the apprenticeships. Jenny Pelling, CILEx Law School’s Director of Business and Apprenticeships, said: 'We are delighted to be working with DAS Law to provide these apprenticeships. They are a wonderful opportunity for law graduates and it was great to hear that we were DAS Law’s standout choice of partner. We look forward to a long and successful partnership.'
Law graduate Lucy Kenyon is among the new intake, and said: 'This is a great opportunity to qualify as a lawyer while studying and working in a legal environment. I’m really excited to have joined the graduate scheme.'
The initiative supersedes DAS Law’s original graduate academy which was successfully launched in 2016 and comprised a two-year course focusing solely on PI.
As well as working on behalf of DAS Group on legal expenses insurance funded claims, the firm also undertakes a range of work on behalf of its parent companies and in the wider legal market, providing the academy’s graduates with a broad and varied training scheme.
Pictured from left to right: Emyr Gwynne-Thomas, Saif Ahmad, Ciaran Gibson-Spain, Lucy Kenyon, Luke McKellar, Charlotte Cowgill, Michael Wallace.