3VB joins mentoring scheme for underrepresented groups at the Bar

3VB is one of six Barristers’ Chambers working together to create a mentoring scheme for underrepresented groups at the Bar.

3VB is delighted to announce that it is working with five other sets of Chambers to create a mentoring scheme, which aims to support and encourage individuals from groups which are underrepresented at the Bar of England and Wales (and in particular the commercial bar) to pursue careers as barristers. Those underrepresented groups include women; people from minority ethnic backgrounds; people with disabilities; LGBT+ people; people who spent time in care; and people from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.

The scheme is called Mentoring For Underrepresented Groups: a scheme run by Commercial Barristers’ Chambers. The Chambers participating for the academic year 2020-2021 are:

  • Blackstone Chambers
  • Brick Court Chambers
  • Essex Court Chambers
  • Fountain Court Chambers
  • One Essex Court Chambers
  • Three Verulam Buildings

The scheme has the support of Combar.

The scheme will run between November 2020 and June 2021. It is open to all undergraduates and graduates from groups that are underrepresented at the Bar of England and Wales (and in particular the commercial bar) and who do not yet have a pupillage offer.

Successful applicants to join the scheme will be allocated a mentor, who will be a member of one of the participating sets of Chambers. As part of the scheme, mentees will be offered:

  • Between three and five one-on-one meetings with their mentor.
  • A workshop on applications for pupillage.
  • Subject to developments in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, one or more social events for mentors, mentees and members of the participating sets of Chambers.

Ewan McQuater QC and Adrian Beltrami QC, joint Heads of 3VB, said “We are delighted to be involved in this progressive mentoring scheme directed at issues of diversity in recruitment to the Bar, with a focus on the commercial Bar. The Bar as a whole is looking to increase diversity, reflecting its fierce commitment to merit and to recruiting from all backgrounds and groups, and should do so as a community. We consider that by coming together sets of chambers are in a better position, collectively, to raise awareness and facilitate change for the better than operating alone.”

Applications to participate in the scheme are now open, and will close at midday on 2 October 2020.

Further information on the scheme, including the application form, can be found here.

If you’d like to find out more details, please get in touch with Stewart Thompson.