Coventry Law School partnership makes national award shortlist

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University news / Student news

Wednesday 04 December 2019

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‘Partnerships in Clinical Legal Education’, a joint initiative between Coventry University, the Central England Law Centre, and Allen & Overy LLP, was one of the runners-up for the ‘Most Effective Pro Bono Partnership’ in the annual LawWorks Pro Bono awards held in London on Tuesday 3 December.

The initiative provides Coventry Law School students with the chance to add a powerful professional element to their learning, by working in Central England Law Centre’s (CELC) Employment Law Clinic.

By working in the clinic, students are able to advise real clients on employment issues such as unpaid wages, unfair dismissal, and discrimination, while working alongside Allen & Overy’s experienced solicitors and lawyers, who are able to provide practical support and advice.

The LawWorks Pro Bono Awards are an annual celebration of the best legal pro bono activities undertaken by organisations and individuals and the positive impact they have had on those helped. This year’s ceremony was held at the Law Society in London, with a speech given by Lady Hale, President of the Supreme Court.

Mencap Legal Network Pro Bono Programme took home the ‘Most Effective Pro Bono Partnership’ award.

The partnership with Central England Law Centre and Allen & Overy LLP is experiential learning at its best: students working with magic circle legal professionals, learning how to interview, research and advise. It builds their confidence and provides invaluable experience to use on their CVs and at job interviews.

Alan East, assistant professor, Coventry Law School

By working with students at Coventry University as part of the CELC Employment Law Clinic, we are able to leverage our experience and provide advice in an under-served area of the country which we would otherwise find difficult to reach. Not only is it a pleasure working with the engaged students at Coventry University as part of this Clinic, but by doing so we also gain valuable experience of thinking on our feet and providing practical client advice.

Pete Summers, associate at Allen & Overy Solicitors

We are delighted that we were shortlisted for the Law Works Pro Bono Partnership award alongside our partners Coventry University and Allen & Overy Solicitors. Our service in Coventry is accessed by people who are in low paid, often insecure employment who would struggle to navigate the employment legal process without guidance. We provide the only free specialist employment law advice service in Coventry, and since 2013 when the clinics began, students have provided advice to over 600 people about their employment problems. This has led to over 200 people being provided with a full casework and representation service by the Law Centre.

Kat King, Solicitor, head of employment team at Central England Legal Clinic