Burges Salmon has established a work experience programme for school children under the PRIME initiative.
The top 50 firm took on 24 work experience students aged 15 to 18 over two weeks in two groups, 12 of whom met the criteria for PRIME either by receiving free school meals or being from a family where no one from a previous generation attended university.
The students came from various schools in Bristol and attended the firm’s offices this month for work experience including participation in workshops, presentations and group projects. They observed the workings of a law firm, including auxillary functions such as the finance, HR, IT and marketing developments and then presented group projects to a panel of HR staff, headteachers and parents.
Burges Salmon senior partner Alan Barr said: “When I first started off in the law, there was little if anything available in terms of work experience. These sorts of experiences are invaluable for the students who took part in our Bright Sparks programme. I hope they will be able to take what they’ve learnt with them through the rest of school, to university and into the workplace.
“The legal sector can sometimes be thought of as inaccessible. This is not a positive view for the industry and, through our PRIME commitments, we are working hard to ensure that we open up the law to as wide a group of young people as possible.”
PRIME is the profession-wide commitment to work experience which was founded in 2011 to provide quality work experience for state school students (14 September 2011).