First cohort starts September 2024
Osborne Clarke has selected BPP University Law School to help prepare its future trainees to undertake the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE).
The international law firm says the tie-up, unveiled today, will focus on an “integrated programme of legal, technical, commercial and personal development skills” for future trainees and solicitor apprentices. The first intake will start at BPP in September 2024.
The Legal Cheek Firms Most List shows the firm recruits around 35 trainees each year across its offices in London, Bristol and Reading.
Alexandra Gower, partner and training principal at Osborne Clarke, commented:
“People often ask me ‘what the future of business may look like’, and this is a real opportunity to consider what it means for the way our lawyers learn about the law, apply the law and, importantly, translate the law to meet the needs of the clients of the future. And that’s not just about legal technical expertise, it’s the full package of developing the person as well as the lawyer.”
The battle between SQE providers to secure major contracts with law firms is quickly gathering pace. The University of Law recently put pen to paper on deals with Clifford Chance and Taylor Wessing, while BARBRI has struck partnerships with the likes of Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (alongside BPP) and Reed Smith.
BPP, meanwhile, has been appointed the exclusive training provider of the City “consortium” — an influential group made up of Freshfields, Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells, Norton Rose Fulbright, Linklaters and Slaughter and May.
Osborne Clarke also confirmed the appointment of Dimitri Vastardis as development manager (legal education and training), a newly created role that will support the SQE training regime. Vastardis is a qualified lawyer and joins from BPP where he lectured and supported the corporate practice areas at the law school.
News of the tie-up comes just weeks after BPP confirmed details of its new SQE courses. Non-law graduates will take a year-long course priced at £16,250 in London and £13,500 elsewhere, while law grads will complete a shorter seven-month version which costs £11,500 in London and £9,500 elsewhere.
The SQE came into force on 1 September this year.