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Matheson initiative to focus on Access students
Matheson managing partner Michael Jackson

14 Feb 2024 / education Print

Matheson initiative to focus on Access students

Matheson has launched a new initiative that it says is designed to address the under-representation of students from less socially mobile backgrounds in the legal profession.

The firm has remodelled its undergraduate Career First Programme, which will now be open exclusively open to first- and second-year undergraduate students on the Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) and the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) schemes.

The firm says that the six-month programme will support students to succeed in their academic studies through a customised skills-development programme and an assigned mentor from Matheson.

Students will participate in a two-part introductory session with Matheson in April, a week’s placement in the firm's offices in July, and a one-day skills-based workshop in October.

Diversity initiatives

Matheson says that the programme is the latest in a series of diversity initiatives it has launched in recent years.

Michael Jackson (managing partner, Matheson) said: “As a firm, it is important that we are thoughtful about diversity in all aspects of our business – including the diversity of our own teams, and the students that join our programmes to experience life at Matheson.

“We strongly believe that career success should be defined by talent and the way in which that talent is applied, not by an individual's circumstances or background,” he added.


Nicola White (director of learning and development, Matheson) said that, since 2020, at least 50% of the participants in the Career First Programme had been students on either the HEAR or DARE schemes.

“We are delighted to now be able to offer our programme exclusively to Access students,” she added.

The Career First Programme is open for applications from Thursday 15 February until Wednesday 13 March.

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