Talented trainee lawyers are invited to apply for a place on the profession’s Diversity Access Scheme (DAS), the Law Society said today as it launched recruitment for the 2020 cohort.
DAS aims to improve social mobility in the profession by supporting people who face exceptional social, educational, financial or personal obstacles to qualify as a solicitor. The scheme has already helped nearly 250 aspiring solicitors start their legal career.
Law Society president Simon Davis said: 'For our profession to thrive, we need talented individuals from diverse backgrounds. I encourage any aspiring solicitor who is facing particular challenges on their way to qualification to consider applying for a place on the scheme.'
Davis said that past alumni of the scheme have 'escaped oppressive regimes, overcome adversity, and achieved academic success while dealing with highly challenging disabilities'.
As well as financing their Legal Practice Course (LPC), the scheme offers successful applicants high-quality work experience, a professional mentor and networking opportunities.
Ashley O’Brien, who is starting her LPC under the scheme, said: 'Family and financial circumstances made completion of the LPC and becoming a family solicitor a goal I may not have been able to practically achieve.
'The acknowledgement of experience, hard work and determination in light of challenging circumstances – which the diversity access scheme values – has given me the confidence and opportunity to make my aspiration a reality.'