Diversity scheme helps talented trainees enter the law

Talented aspiring solicitors are invited to apply for a place on the profession’s Diversity Access Scheme (DAS), the Law Society of England and Wales said as it opened recruitment for the 2021 cohort.

DAS aims to help improve social mobility and diversity in the legal profession by supporting people who face exceptional social, educational, financial or personal obstacles to qualifying as a solicitor. To date, the scheme has supported nearly 250 talented trainees to pursue their career ambitions.

Law Society president David Greene said: “We look forward to welcoming a new cohort of up to 10 trainees onto the Diversity Access Scheme and supporting them to begin their career in the law.

“I am hugely proud of previous awardees’ achievements in the face of great challenges –DAS alumni have come to the law having escaped oppressive regimes and achieved professional success while dealing with serious disabilities.

“To thrive, our profession needs talented, driven individuals from diverse backgrounds. I encourage any aspiring solicitor who is facing challenges qualifying to consider applying for a place on the scheme.”

In addition to financial assistance to undertake their Legal Practice Course (LPC), the scheme offers awardees relevant high-quality work experience, a professional mentor and networking opportunities.

2020 DAS awardee Abigail Pacey said: “I was told in school that people like me don’t study law. After working full time for a few years, I chose to ignore that comment and pursued at my own cost an access to higher education course to be able to go to university.

“I pursued an undergraduate law degree and a masters degree and worked throughout both in order to financially support myself. However, funding the LPC seemed to be a challenge too far.

“Not only has the DAS changed my financial outlook, but it has also restored my confidence. I was facing job insecurity due to Covid-19 and I was beginning to feel that my efforts had been wasted - knowing that I have the backing of the Law Society in pursuing my career goals is invaluable."

Notes to editors

Recruitment is open from 1 March to 25 April 2021.

The Diversity Access Scheme is sponsored by:

  • BP
  • UBS
  • Natwest
  • Withers LLP
  • Hogan Lovells
  • Nottingham Law School
  • BPP Law School
  • The University of Law
  • University of Westminster
  • Sackers

See the Diversity Access Scheme page for further information

All enquiries about the scheme should be addressed to Leila Lesan at diversityaccessscheme@lawsociety.org.uk.

About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body that works globally to support and represent solicitors, promoting the highest professional standards, the public interest and the rule of law.

Press office contact: Emma Clarke | 0208 049 3743

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