Law Offices of David G. Arganian, Seattle, WA

Leading sets sign up to bar social mobility scheme

The Inner Temple has launched a social mobility initiative in partnership with 42 chambers with the aim of giving work experience to underrepresented students.

The Pegasus Access Scheme (PAS), which is aimed at university students or recent graduates, will provide a range of three- to five-day mini-pupillages at the partner chambers, which include UK top 10 sets Fountain Court, Blackstone Chambers, Wilberforce Chambers and 3 Verulam Buildings.

Chair of the Inner Temple Outreach Committee James Dingemans QC said: "No one institution can address all of the issues surrounding social mobility and access to the professions, but everyone has a responsibility to do what can be done to break down any potential barriers to entry."

The criteria for the Inner Temple's PAS includes the requirements for the candidate to have attended a state school, to be in the first generation of their family to go into higher education, and to have been eligible for free school meals.

The candidates will need to demonstrate strong academic skills by either being predicted or to have received a 2:1 in their degree. They will also need to demonstrate interpersonal and self-motivation skills.

The news follows the creation of the first profession-wide social mobility initiative Prime, which now boasts almost 75 law firm signatories (14 September 2011).

A number of the law firms intend to roll out initial pilot schemes this year, with Slaughter and May announcing a partnership with an inner-city school last week (8 March 2012).

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