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Hugh James offers sought-after placements

17 October 2016

Hugh James Solicitors with students

Cardiff University’s School of Law and Politics has secured 18 work placements for third year Law students in a significant push to increase the employability of its students.

The full-time salaried placements have been organised at top 100 UK law firm, Hugh James, and will be open to students via a competitive application process which aims to replicate the graduate recruitment process.

During their placements, students will undertake legal practice as paralegals, and will be performing graduate level roles.  The placement year will enable students to gain experience of legal practice, and will provide students with an opportunity to apply the knowledge gained during the first two years of study in a practical context.

It is hoped that students will develop both key practitioner skills such as case management, legal research and legal writing in addition to generic employability skills such as time management, team working and commercial awareness.

The School of Law and Politics is committed to ensuring students are equipped with the skills needed in the workplace and offer a variety of schemes and initiatives, some unique to the School, aimed at improving employability. The School also works in partnership with lawyers, charities and voluntary organisations to give students the opportunity to practise and extend their skills, though a range of pro-bono schemes.

Cardiff is the only Russell Group University to provide all of the undergraduate and professional vocational training needed by both aspiring solicitors and barristers before they undertake a training contract or pupillage.

Speaking about the partnership Diane Brooks, HR Director at Hugh James, said: “We have developed an excellent relationship with Cardiff University's law school over many years and a significant number of our lawyers and partners are alumni.

“As a growing business which employs more than 600 people in Cardiff we have an ongoing and increasing need for the brightest legal talent in the marketplace. The scheme will be extremely useful for us in terms of helping us to identify future graduates who have what it takes to succeed in our business. It will also be very beneficial for the students who will be able to demonstrate to future employers that they have a firm grasp of the practical aspects of graduate legal work as well as the academics.”

Professor Julie Price, Head of Pro Bono and Employability at the School of Law and Politics, said: “This is the first time we have offered a Law with Professional Placement programme. Such opportunities are still quite unusual in leading UK universities, particularly with this number of students going to the same firm for a year. We have a long-established working relationship with Hugh James and we welcome this innovative programme as attractive to students who want significant experience of the law in practice with a view to informing their future career choices.”

More information on how the placement year is assessed and paid for is available from the Law Admissions Team.

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