Perry Beeches The Academy Pupils Look Forward to a 5 STAR Future

Business law firm, DWF, has brought its innovative and award winning 5 STAR Futures development programme to Birmingham to help talented students improve their skills and boost their chances of securing employment.

Following the success of its inaugural scheme in Liverpool and Manchester, the 5 STAR Futures initiative has been brought to Perry Beeches The Academy, Beeches Road. The scheme provides students nearing the end of secondary school education with insights into the world of work and a real life context for learning via a series of workshops.

The first 5 STAR workshop took place on Monday (27 January) at DWF's One Snowhill offices. The session – with sixteen Year 10 pupils – focused on developing workplace behaviours and gave participants the chance to draw learnings from the firm's experts.

Bringing together secretaries, paralegals, receptionists and facilities colleagues as well as partners and associates from across the Birmingham office, the project demonstrates DWF's collaborative approach and commitment to giving students the broadest possible mentorship.

The scheme was developed by DWF lawyer, Simon Price, in partnership with schools and other educational institutions, to provide an aspirational learning framework for students. Denise Brosnan, a partner in the insurance team at DWF, worked with Simon to identify a partner school and to assist with the roll out of the programme in Birmingham.

Simon commented: "As a values-driven law firm, we know it is important to actively support the communities we operate within, and Birmingham is no exception. The 5 STAR Futures programme demonstrates our commitment to the next generation of young professionals and their success, and we hope that the pupils from Perry Beeches will gain real benefit from the programme.

"In January alone we will be supporting more than 130 pupils from across Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, Preston and London, and more than 200 individuals across our offices have signed up to be mentors already.

Assistant head teacher at Perry Beeches The Academy, Kushina Blackwood, added: "Our young people are incredibly talented, and the 5 STAR futures programme will give them the opportunity to develop their confidence and employability skills while experiencing life in a professional office. The first workshop was a great success and the mentors that are supporting our students are fantastic."

Simon continued: "The programme was launched to meet a genuine 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 sector and the issues it must overcome, allowing us to take steps towards finding answers."