A&O helps fund disadvantaged students through Queen’s University Belfast

A magic circle player will offer 45 scholarships

Magic circle outfit Allen & Overy (A&O) has announced that it will be offering 45 scholarships over the next three years as part of a new initiative with Queen’s University Belfast.

The company will contribute to QUB’s Pathway Opportunity Program scholarship fund, an initiative that provides students from disadvantaged backgrounds with support to attend college.

The scheme is open to sixth graders from Northern Ireland currently in their first year of study at A level, or equivalent, who meet the requirements listed on the QUB website. This includes being the first member of their immediate family to attend university and to have passed at least six GCSEs at grades A*-C, including the English language.

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The magic circle player already has connections in the Northern Irish capital, having launched an outpost in the city in 2011. This office has since grown into A&O’s second largest office, with the company also launching a training contract based in Belfast in 2019.

Andrew Wilson, Senior Partner in A&O’s Belfast office, commented: “At Allen & Overy, we believe in giving everyone a fair chance. Not everyone has the same opportunities in life, or the same access to education, but where we come from doesn’t have to define our future success.

He added:

“We believe that by working together we can make a significant contribution and help change the lives of young people. We look forward to working with students who may be underrepresented and supporting them during their time at Queen’s University. The scholarships will enhance the university experience and encourage students to help Northern Ireland prosper in the future.

This isn’t the first time A&O has put its money in its mouth when it comes to social mobility. The firm offers financial and non-financial assistance to aspiring lawyers through its social mobility, A&O Accelerate and Smart Start programs.

A&O’s efforts follow similar social mobility initiatives by other businesses in the city, including Ropes & Gray, Shoosmiths and Osborne Clarke.

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