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Stephenson Harwood

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Stephenson Harwood has announced the launch of its new scholarship and solicitor apprenticeship programmes. Both will open for applications in October 2020, and will start in September 2021.

“Widening access to the legal profession is something about which I am particularly passionate,” said Eifion Morris, Chief Executive, Stephenson Harwood. “Of course it’s the right thing to do, and we all know that diversity – in all its forms – is so important in any successful business. But, for me, this one’s personal.

“I grew up in a rural village in West Wales, in a family where one grandfather had been a miner, and the other a farmer. The progression to higher education is something that was a natural expectation by most of my colleagues, however that is not true for everyone and wasn’t my experience growing up. I was one of ten grandchildren and the first and only one to go to university. Key to me making it to where I am today were the teachers in my local comprehensive school and their dedication to educating the few of us who remained at school beyond the age of 16. It was by no means a given that I would end up as a solicitor or leading an international law firm. I have been an ‘outsider’ for much of my professional life – whether in terms of my background, working in my second language, my sexuality or choosing a training contract at a mid-sized firm with a unique training system (Gouldens) over the traditional four seats at a magic circle firm – and I genuinely believe that this is a key part of what I bring to teams and now in leading the wider firm. We need more diversity in law, more people who may have thought that a career in law is not for ‘people like them’ and that’s what these programmes seek to support.”

The scholarships will provide students with £15,000 per year, to cover the costs of university fees and contribute to living expenses. Recipients will also be given a mentor from the firm, invited to insight days and employment workshops, provided with work experience and guaranteed a place at an assessment centre for a training contract. In recognition that there are both practical barriers – such as the sheer cost of university education – as well as those which are harder to identify – like not knowing anyone who can share their experiences of working in law. The Stephenson Harwood programme has been designed to address both elements.

The solicitor apprenticeship scheme provides an alternative route to a career in law. It’s open to students straight from school, and successful participants will qualify as solicitors after the six-year programme. They will have access to the same opportunities as Stephenson Harwood trainees – including spending time across practice groups, taking part in international and client secondments, and being supervised and supported by partners and associates throughout their time with the firm.

“We wanted to make sure that these programmes tackled access to law at the point at which the most meaningful impact can be made, and with those students who are most under-represented in the profession,” said Lisa Marks, Trainee Principal, Stephenson Harwood. “That’s why we’ve worked with MyKindaFuture, to support our efforts with the school outreach and ensure that we get applications from the type of candidates we want to attract. We’re really excited about the potential for both schemes, and to receiving applications from a range of talented, driven and passionate students.”

Stephenson Harwood is a law firm of over 1,100 people worldwide, including more than 180 partners. Our people are committed to achieving the goals of our clients – listed and private companies, institutions and individuals. We assemble teams of bright thinkers to match our clients’ needs and give the right advice from the right person at the right time. Dedicating the highest calibre of legal talent to overcome the most complex issues, we deliver pragmatic, expert advice that is set squarely in the real world. Our headquarters are in London, with nine offices across Asia, Europe and the Middle East. In addition we have forged close ties with other high quality law firms. This diverse mix of expertise and culture results in a combination of deep local insight and the capability to provide a seamless international service.

 

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Statistics and facts

Firm type
  • International
  • City
Practice Areas
  • Corporate
  • Commercial
  • Property
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Banking & Finance
  • Employment & Pensions
  • Energy
  • Infastructure
  • Competition & EU
  • Insolvency
  • IP
  • Tax
  • Shipping
  • Aviation
  • Rail
  • Private wealth
Head quartersLondon
Number of Offices9
Office Locations - Overview
  • International
Location of Major UK Offices
  • London
Location of Major International Offices
  • Europe
  • Middle East
  • Asia
  • China
No of Partners180
No of Lawyers400
Average Trainee Salary£43,000 - £47,000
NQ Salary£75,000
Managing PartnerEifion Morris

Training Contracts

Here at Stephenson Harwood, we take on just 20 trainees per year. Join us and not only will you be a valued member of our diverse, global team, you’ll have a real opportunity to make your mark on the future of our firm. There’s a lot to look forward to as a trainee at Stephenson Harwood: top quality global work across a range of sectors, an environment that balances cutting edge work with a respectful, friendly culture, and the chance to prove yourself on an international secondment. We work in small teams, so every person is critical – that’s why we’ll expect you to work to the best of your ability every day.

Our training is not only structured and practical but highly personalised, so you’ll have everything you need to develop along a career path that’s absolutely right for you. Following a week’s intensive induction and a comprehensive post induction programme you’ll complete four seats – each six months long – across different practice areas. We ask for your preferred choices so we can accommodate them wherever possible.

Whatever the practice, you can expect extensive exposure to our clients and stimulating, cutting edge projects. You could find yourself working on anything from a high-profile £multi-million financial litigation case to a ground breaking M&A deal. You could even spend time on secondment at a client’s office, absorbing a totally different business culture first-hand. We also encourage our trainees to apply to gain experience overseas in our Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Dubai or Paris offices.

 

No of Trainees / Yr20
Average Retention Rates90%
Location
  • London
  • Dubai and Hong Kong
Degree class2.1
A levelsABB
Sponsorship - LPCYes
Sponsorship - GDLYes
Sponsorship - AllowanceYes
Sponsorship - CommentsMaintenance grant of £6,000 per annum.
LPC / GDL Provider
  • BPP
Assessment Process
  • Application Form
  • Graduate Recruitment Interview
  • Partner Interview
  • Written Exercise
  • Case Study Interview
  • Online Critical Reasoning Test
Vacation Scheme Requirement?
  • No (not a requirement of TC application)
Number of Seats4
Overseas SeatsYou could spend time on secondment at a client’s office or do an international seat in our Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Dubai or Paris offices.

Current Opportunities

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Vacation Schemes

Our winter, spring and summer placement schemes will give you a real taste of life at the firm. We’ll make sure you’re involved in quality work and will try to help you experience any areas of law you’re particularly interested in. Typically you’ll spend one or two weeks in our offices, sitting with qualified lawyers and tackling some case work. You’ll also benefit from an organised programme of interactive sessions, talks and social events.

On your first day, we’ll assign you a buddy – a current trainee who’ll help you settle in, answer your questions and give you an honest overview of what it’s like to work for us.

A placement gives you a great opportunity to talk informally to existing trainees, lawyers, partners and support teams to find out just why the law and Stephenson Harwood are such attractive career options. What’s more, we’ll pay you £370 a week.

 

No of Vacation Schemes / yr5
Location
  • London
Degree class2.1
A levelsABB
Training Contract Interview included?Yes
Training Contract Interview included? Additional commentsYou will take part in an assessment centre during your placement scheme.
Assessment Process
  • Application Form
  • Graduate Recruitment Interview
  • Partner Interview
  • Written Exercise
  • Case Study Interview.
  • Online Critical Reasoning Test

Current Opportunities

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Open Days

Come along to a virtual open day in November or December, or an in-house open day in January or March and get a good feel for what a career at a mid-sized international law firm is really like.

You’ll meet partners, associates and trainees as well as the future talent team. We’ll outline what to expect as a trainee and explain the type of work we do. You’ll also take away helpful information about our training contract plus answers to all your questions and the confidence to make the right career decisions.

 

Number of Open Days4
Location
  • London
  • Virtual
Degree classPredicted a 2.1
A levelsABB
Assessment Process
  • Application Form

Current Opportunities

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Apprenticeships

Our solicitor apprenticeship offers you an exciting opportunity to work on deals with international clients while also studying and working towards a level 7 solicitor apprenticeship standard.

 

On the academic side you will gain lots of useful knowledge which you’ll be able to use in your everyday work. BPP Law School will teach the course through a combination of online and face-to-face learning and you’ll have one day a week to dedicate entirely to your studies.

 

You’ll be part of a team of partners, associates, trainees and paralegals; you can expect to be helping our lawyers with a variety of tasks. You could find yourself working on anything from a high-profile, £multi-million financial litigation case to a ground-breaking M&A deal. You could also spend time on secondment at a client’s office, absorbing a totally different business culture first-hand.  We would also encourage you to take up one of our international secondment opportunities for our apprentices in our offices in Dubai, Hong Kong, Paris, Singapore and Seoul – it’s an incredible chance to expand your horizons, experience new cultures and explore our global network.

 

It will be a challenge but we’ll provide you with lots of support with a dedicated supervisor and buddy/mentor and lots of opportunities for training and development.

 

Find out more information here – https://www.shlegal-futuretalent.com/opportunities/apprenticeships

No of Apprenticeships6
Location
  • London
A Levels3 A-level grades totalling 152 UCAS points (ABB)
Assessment Process
  • Application Form
  • Telephone Interview
  • Partner Interview
  • Written Exercise
Partner Law School
  • BPP

Current Opportunities

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Diversity Opportunities

Bright Sparks work experience programme

Bright Sparks provides an insightful opportunity to gain work experience and be mentored through the business of the legal world. It is suitable for those who want to pursue a career in law, but also provides valuable experience for those interested in human resources, IT, marketing & business development, and accounts.

What you’ll be doing

During your time with us, you can expect to take part in a variety of workshops, a 1:1 CV clinic and a mock interview – all of which will help you develop your skills and take ownership of your future.

You’ll also take part in a group project during your time with us, working together with other students on the Bright Sparks work experience programme.

You’ll be finding out what you do well and learn what you can do better whilst boosting your CV and career prospects.

Lunches will be provided and reasonable travel expenses will be paid.

What we look for

We’re looking for enthusiastic and open-minded students to join our Bright Sparks programme. Students who want to get stuck in and try new things. To be eligible, students also need to meet the following criteria:

  • Attend a state (non-fee paying) school;
  • Are school age students in year 12;
  • Are eligible to work in the UK; and
  • Are or have been eligible for free school meals (or where this information is difficult or sensitive to obtain, the participant attends a school that is significantly above the regional average in terms of number of students eligible for free school meals); or
  • Would be of the first generation in their immediate family to attend university
No of Opportunities10
Aimed as those:
  • At a Non Fee Paying School
  • Eligible for Free School Meals
  • In year 12 to year 13 (England and Wales)
  • In Lower/Upper Sixth (Northern Ireland)
Location
  • London
Assessment Process
  • Application Form

Current Opportunities

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Other Opportunities

University scholarships

The scholarships will provide three students with £15,000 per year, to cover the costs of university fees and contribute to living expenses. Recipients will also be given a mentor from the firm, invited to insight days and employment workshops, provided with work experience and guaranteed a place at an assessment centre for a training contract.

 

Criteria

To be eligible you must successfully apply for a law degree to commence in September/October 2021 (you do not need to have secured your place prior to your application for the scholarship).  To be considered you must:

  • Be able to demonstrate that you have the academic potential to succeed at university;
  • Be attending, and have attended from aged 11, a state-funded, non-fee-paying school/college; and

You must meet one of the following:

  • Be in receipt of, or have previously received or have been eligible for, free school meals, pupil premium, education maintenance allowance and/or 16 to 19 bursary;
  • Have grown up in a household where no parent or guardian attended University;
  • You are, or have been, in local authority care (for a period of 3 months or longer);
  • You are, or have been, a full-time or part-time carer;
  • You came to the UK as a refugee or asylum seeker; or
  • You are attending a state school or college with below average A-Level or Higher point score and/or low rate of progression to higher education.

Current Opportunities

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