BCLP expands solicitor apprenticeship offering to Southampton

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First intake September 2022

Southampton — via Unsplash

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) has expanded its solicitor apprenticeship programme to its Southampton office, with the firm taking on its first school-leavers next September.

The move comes seven years after the firm launched its first apprenticeship scheme in its Manchester outpost in 2015.

Partnering with BPP University Law School, the programme sees participants undertake paid paralegal work alongside their undergraduate legal studies, before then preparing for the newly-launched Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE).

It’s at this point, the firm says, the apprentice pathway and its more traditional training contract programme become aligned, with the apprentices joining the trainees on seat rotations as part of their qualifying work experience.

Like trainees, apprentices will have the opportunity to undertake a client or international secondment as well as be considered for a newly qualified associate role during the final six months.

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The firm told Legal Cheek it is initially looking to recruit two apprentices in Southampton.

Anna Robbins, partner in charge (Southampton), commented:

“We are really excited to extend the award-winning BCLP apprentice scheme into our Southampton office next year. It’s so important to continue to broaden the range of routes we can offer towards solicitor qualification and this is a great opportunity to extend our established scheme into our growing Southampton office.”

A host of major law firms have now embraced the TC alternative, with stats published earlier this year showing a 40% uptick in opportunities between 2019 and 2020.

Norton Rose Fulbright recently launched solicitor apprenticeship programmes in both its London and Newcastle offices, while earlier this summer, Allen & Overy became the first magic circle player to offer the pathway, recruiting an initial cohort of six school-leavers to start next September.

Keen to find out more about life at the firm or a life in law more generally? Why not sign up to the December Legal Cheek UK Virtual Law Fair 2021. It takes place on Thursday 2 December, between 2-5pm, and features 70 law firms, including all the magic circle and leading US firms’ London offices, international firms, and national firms across the UK.

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