‘UK first’ as Sheffield Hallam University sets up law firm to give students work experience

Sheffield Hallam University is claiming a UK first with the launch of a ‘fully regulated’ law firm giving students real-world experience.

Wednesday, 20th February 2019, 1:08 pm
Updated Wednesday, 20th February 2019, 1:12 pm
Head of law, prof Elizabeth Smart, pictured, set up SHU Law with solicitors Sally Mallinson-Ayres and Rebecca Draper.

Students taking law degrees, and post-graduates, will work for SHU Law, based on Broomgrove Road.

Sheffield Hallam says it is the first university to offer a law degree that incorporates legal work experience into every year of the course.

Head of law, prof Elizabeth Smart, set up the firm with solicitors Sally Mallinson-Ayres and Rebecca Draper.

She said: “By placing our students at the centre of a live client clinical environment we are creating a unique learning opportunity that’s reflective of real-life practice.

“Sheffield Hallam is committed to providing applied learning opportunities for its students in order to help them succeed at whatever they choose to do. SHU Law will enhance their employability and graduate attributes in the world of work and inspire students academically and emotionally.”

All students would be fully supervised, she added.  

SHU Law is licensed by the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority.

Some 750 law students will pass through SHU Law during the lifespan of the degree courses. In the first year, as part of their introduction to law and practice, students will undertake six-weeks’ ethics and induction training.

They will return in their second year to work on contentious, non-contentious, public legal education, practice policy and research and law in practice; and again, in their third and final year.


SHU Law will be formally opened on Wednesday February 27 by vice chancellor, prof Sir Christopher Husbands.