A COMMERCIAL law firm is hoping to inspire a new generation of lawyers by establishing links with schools and colleges.

Newcastle firm Muckle is providing a half term work experience programme with a difference, which aims to give participants an advantage when it comes to developing their careers.

The aim of the firm’s Inspiring Careers Programme is to enable young people from a variety of backgrounds to consider a career with a professional services business and gain valuable work experience, which could help them stand out when they apply for jobs or places at university.

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Stephen McNicol, managing partner at Muckle LLP, said: “It is increasingly difficult for young people to break into the legal profession without relevant work experience, and evidence suggests that it is even harder for those who do not have connections or family networks that create work experience opportunities.

“We believe very strongly in nurturing the talent we have in the region. To do that we need to help students understand what the opportunities are, encourage them to realise their full potential and demonstrate that they do not need to leave the North East to pursue a challenging, varied and rewarding career. Most of all we hope that the young people who come to us for the week have a great time and leave feeling enthused.”

There are eight places on the Inspiring Careers Programme, for students from Kenton School, St Thomas More RC High School, Park View School, Cramlington Learning Village, Churchill Community College, Seaton Burn College, Walbottle Campus and The Northumberland Church of England Academy. Lauren Graham in Year 12 at Kenton School said: "I have always been interested in doing law and I wanted to take part because law is such a hard area to get work experience in. This week is a great opportunity to gain new skills and talk to lots of people working at a law firm."