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18 February 2013
Applications have opened for a scheme which helps exceptional would-be solicitors to undertake the Legal Practice Course (LPC).
The Law Society Diversity Access Scheme, which has already helped over 140 students with tuition fees, is now accepting applications for its 2013 intake.
Aimed at talented students who would struggle to bear the financial burden without external funding, the scheme provides full and partial scholarships with LPC fees. Students accepted onto the scheme are also afforded access to professional networks and experience through mentoring, work placements and networking opportunities.
To be eligible for the scheme, applicants must demonstrate that they face or have overcome exceptional financial, social or educational obstacles to qualification.
Commenting on the scheme, Law Society president Lucy Scott-Moncrieff said: "This is no mere charitable gesture – it’s helping new talent getting a foot in the door. These bright, inspiring students have got all it takes to succeed in law - except for the financial means, professional contacts and opportunities. With help from this scheme, they can become assets to the profession."
Sandie Okoro, Group General Counsel at Baring Asset Management and ambassador of the Diversity Access Scheme, said: "The Law Society’s Diversity Access Scheme is all about finding exceptional talent in unusual places. The students that go through the scheme are talented, motivated and intelligent. If not for the scheme, they would be denied a career in the law through lack of finance.
"The scheme also benefits law firms as it allows them to scout for talent in a wider trainee talent pool, ensuring that those who are traditionally overlooked are instead given a chance to excel in the profession. It is now accepted that the goal of greater diversity in the legal profession is a 'must-have'. The Diversity Access Scheme is an excellent way of ensuring that goal is scored.”
Applications for the scheme close at midday on 29 March 2013.