News & Blog

For the latest industry and case news

Spotlight on apprenticeships

By Amy Clowrey

Published In: Switalskis News

It’s National Apprenticeship Week: the perfect opportunity to shine a light on legal apprenticeships, which are going from strength to strength at Switalskis.

photo of text saying find an apprenticeship

With 11 apprentices and recruitment for our September cohort starting in spring, this is becoming an increasingly popular alternative to traditional routes into a legal career.

 Amy Clowrey , director and solicitor in our Child Abuse department, is our training principal responsible for qualifying solicitors. Here she explores apprenticeships and what makes Switalskis an appealing option for aspiring solicitors.

For those keen to start a career in law and considering their next steps after A-levels or completion of their university degree, I believe apprenticeships should be firmly on the radar.

Legal apprenticeships are challenging the industry norms and opening up a career in law to people from diverse backgrounds. Traditionally, those who wish to train as a paralegal or lawyer would arrive at a legal firm with a degree under their belt and ready to start a training contract. Now, legal apprenticeships remove the financial barriers associated with university study and present an equally rewarding gateway into the legal profession.   

  Backed by government funding, apprenticeships allow people to earn while they train, develop skills and gain experience on-the-job.

 What do legal apprenticeship programmes involve?

Our 32-month graduate solicitor apprenticeship and six-year (non-graduate) solicitor apprenticeship programmes support people through to qualification with four days of work-based experience and one day of classroom study every week. The programmes culminate in the completion of the Solicitors Qualifying Exams (SQE1 and SQE2).

 To apply for a graduate solicitor apprenticeship with us applicants need to have a law degree, or a non-law degree and a Graduate Diploma in Law. For our (non-graduate) solicitor places you will need to have three A-levels (or equivalent) - minimum grade C (government requirement). We are also able offer non-solicitor apprenticeships although these aren’t currently part of our recruitment drive but rather they are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Our application process is based entirely on merit, and we encourage applications from ambitious and hardworking aspiring solicitors who feel that they fit our criteria and match our values. We actively seek people from diverse socio-economic backgrounds because we are passionate advocates for building a richer and more inclusive legal profession.

 Home-grown talent

Apprenticeships are not just a means to fill roles. They are also a strategic investment in growing our own talent. This allows us to nurture people from a variety of backgrounds, ensuring a broad range of perspectives and experiences within our business and within the profession as a whole.

 We want people to have a rewarding and fulfilling career with us from the first day they join, through to qualifying and beyond. Once they are fully qualified, our Career Development Programme gives people a clearly defined route for progression to director level. We work hard to ensure Switalskis is an ideal home for ambitious people with real star qualities and a determination to succeed in the profession.

 What’s it like to be a Switalskis apprentice?

We take a long-term view to recruiting our apprentices. We want them to feel part of the Switalskis family and to become our leaders of the future. So we look for people with drive and ambition. We also want people who have integrity and excellent people and communication skills, so they are well equipped to work with our clients.

We currently have four graduate solicitor, four (non-graduate) solicitor and three non-solicitor apprentices. Each and every one of them is hardworking, ambitious and keen to progress their legal career.

Ellie Messenger is one of our graduate solicitor apprentices, recently promoted from our care paralegal team. Ellie says: “Since beginning my career with Switalskis, I’ve been surrounded by a team of motivated and supportive colleagues who have provided me with the knowledge and support to overcome any challenges. This has enhanced my growth, provided me with the foundations to excel in the work that I am completing and develop my professional capabilities.

“The Graduate Solicitors Apprenticeship is a diverse learning experience that will give me the opportunity to gain practical, hands-on experience alongside the completion of my Solicitors Qualifying Examinations. The role will also expose me to the work that is carried out within different departments across the firm. I believe this will help me to develop a well-rounded skill set and a broader understanding of the legal profession.”

As we mark National Apprenticeship Week, we also reflect on the strides forward that we, as a business and industry, have made to shape a more inclusive and diverse future for the legal profession. We are proud to nurture the next generation of legal professionals through our apprenticeships. And we will continue to encourage school, college and university students to explore apprenticeships as a dynamic pathway to fulfilling their career ambitions.

 If you are interested in finding out more about our apprenticeship programmes, please contact us. Call 0800 138 0458 or email

Back to News & Blog
Share this post
Photo of Amy Clowrey

Amy has worked in the legal sector for 13 years. She is a Director in our Child Abuse Compensation team.

Director and Solicitor

News, views and information from us and the industry

Related posts

Contact us