How aspiring lawyers can make QWE work for them

Speakers from Flex Legal, Accutrainee and Reed Smith joined a legal education expert from BARBRI to discuss how qualifying work experience is presenting a new and exciting pathway into the profession

The Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE) came into force on September 1, 2021. Though in its infancy, it has masses of potential for the legal profession. At Legal Check’s latest virtual event, ‘How to use QWE to qualify as a solicitor’, members from Legal FlexAccutrainee and Reed Smith joined a legal education expert from BARBRI to discuss the changes brought by qualifying work experience (QWE), and the opportunities it brings for aspiring lawyers and the wider legal profession.

The speakers

Robert DudleyVice President of Strategy & Marketing at BARBRI
Will LongFlex Legal’s Head of Client Partnerships and Flex trainee
Meera Fergusonsolicitor and Accutrainee’s Director of Operations
Rebecca SchrodGraduate Recruitment Manager at Reed Smith

1. Gain QWE at multiple firms

Aspiring lawyers can acquire their two years of QWE at up to four different organisations. And they don’t necessarily need to be law firms, with in-house teams, law clinics and unregulated providers of legal services, all now available to offer work that makes the grade. This is cause for celebration according to Meera Ferguson, solicitor and Accutrainee’s Director of Operations. At Accutrainee, which employs trainees who are then seconded out to in-house teams and law firms, “the building blocks had already been set and relationships had been built” for trainees and its client businesses and law firms, she explained.

Will Long, Flex Legal’s Head of Client Partnerships, also shared the same sentiment. Though newer in its inception and with a unique social mobility angle, Flex Legal has been able to capitalize on this shake-up by offering its Flex trainees experiences

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