Our social mobility strategy is a key part of how we work to reduce inequalities within the legal sector, improve the diversity of candidates we recruit and retain the best talent.Work experience opportunities
Investing in young people
We invest in initiatives that up-skill, inspire and equip young people for the world of work as they progress through school, go to university and take their first steps towards a professional career. Building on our strong connections with schools and charities, we have a number of ways we try to make a difference to the future prospects of the young people we support.
Slaughter and may scholarship scheme
Launched in April 2021, the Slaughter and May Scholarship Scheme provides bursaries to high-potential undergraduates from less advantaged backgrounds. Working with social mobility charity upReach, the Scheme is an extension of the firm’s existing Law Springboard programme, and provides tailored leadership development opportunities in addition to financial support. The firm has committed to fund three cohorts of 10 students per year, for three years of university study. The bursary will equate to £3,000 per student per year, representing a £270,000 investment over five years.
“upReach research has shown that balancing part-time work alongside study can hold back some high potential students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Financial support can level the playing field, helping students dedicate more time to achieving their academic potential, and participating in extracurricular activities that build crucial “soft skills” like leadership and communication - both of which can make them more competitive in the graduate job market.” Nick Bent, CEO at upReach
Lead into Law
Working in partnership with diversity specialists Rare, we launched Lead in to Law in September 2019. This two year development programme provides twenty 16 to 18 year olds from less advantaged backgrounds who are interested in a legal career with work experience, insight opportunities, mentoring and university visits.
We sponsor Rare Discuss, an exclusive training programme for university students from less-advantaged backgrounds who are interested in pursuing a career in law.
“It was a fantastic opportunity to go inside some of the biggest law firms in the City to see what they do and how they do it. It was fascinating to talk face-to-face with lawyers at each firm, from trainees to partners, and to have the chance to see how each firm is different. Rare guided me through the application process. They gave tips on what to include in application forms/CVs, they conducted mock interviews based on each firm’s format.
In the end, I had interviews with three sponsor firms, and ended up doing summer schemes with two. I got training contract offers from both.”
Evan, an associate at Slaughter and May