DWF launches development programme for stars of the future
Business law firm DWF has launched an innovative new development programme that will improve students’ employability skills, boosting their chances of securing jobs. The ‘5 STAR Futures’ scheme kicked-off last week when the firm welcomed 15 pupils from Broadgreen International School to its Liverpool office, where the initiative is being pioneered.
The students were the first to experience one of the 5 STAR Futures workshops, which are designed to provide 14 and 15-year-olds with an insight into the world of work, offering them a real life context for learning. Run by experienced work coaches from DWF’s Liverpool office, the session focused on developing workplace behaviours and gave participants the chance to draw learnings from the firm’s experts.
5 STAR Futures demonstrates a collaborative approach across DWF’s Merseyside office, with secretaries, para-legals, receptionists and facilities colleagues joining partners and associates to give the broadest possible mentorship to school children in Liverpool.
The scheme has been developed by Simon Price, litigation associate and professional development lawyer at DWF, in partnership with schools and other educational institutions from the North West. The programme provides an aspirational learning framework for students approaching the end of their secondary school education.
Price comments: “As a values-driven law firm, we know it is important to actively support the communities we operate within. Our new programme, 5 STAR Futures, demonstrates our commitment to the next generation of young professionals, which will be responsible for the economic success of the country in years to come.
“The programme was launched to meet a real requirement by the education sector to find solutions to the challenges it faces, especially that of employment for school leavers. The level of involvement that DWF’s education group has in the scheme will enable us to gain valuable insights into the education industry and the issues it must overcome, allowing us to take steps towards finding answers.
Maria Burquest, head of the education sector group at DWF, said: “In today’s competitive job market young people face many challenges. We hope that the collective experience of our team will allow the pupils taking part to advance their learning further than the school curriculum, which is all the more important now as employers place elevated demands on job applicants.”
Sonia Cross, education business manager at Broadgreen International School, commented: “We are proud to be working in partnership with DWF on such an important initiative. The project provides a real life context for learning and allows stuadents to learn in the workplace from positive role models. Many of the students were keen to get involved from the outset, believing the project would help to develop their confidence and interpersonal skills.”
Tyrone Jones, head of values & corporate responsibility at DWF highlighted the significance of this programme: “At DWF our values shape who we are, what we do and how we do it. Creating a culture of corporate responsibility is fundamental to our success as a business and by focusing on the things that matter today, we can play a part in positively impacting the aspirations and life chances of young people tomorrow.
“5 STAR Futures is just one of a number of transformational initiatives we have either developed or support to positively impact young people in education. Confidence and resilience are two of the most important attributes needed to help young people transition into employment and navigate the world of work. This latest programme visibly demonstrates our continued commitment to build sustainable relationships with local schools and to utilise the skills of our own people in the most effective way when engaging in the communities in which we live and work”.