The 10,000 Interns Foundation provides paid internships for Black students and graduates through the 10,000 Black Interns (10KBI) Programme. This scheme is designed to support Black students and graduates and address under-representation of Black talent across various sectors. The legal profession is only one part of the 10KBI scheme.

The Bar Council is pleased to support the Bar’s steering group for this initiative. The steering group, which is formed of members and representatives from various sets of chambers, are responsible for delivering the programme supported by the Bar Council.

This summer, the Bar took part in the scheme for the second year running and offered 25 students and graduates a unique opportunity to spend at least a week at a variety of chambers’ and bar-based organisations, over the course of a six-week internship, to get a good breadth of work at the Bar. The exposure to life at the Bar from an array of perspectives has proven to be invaluable to interns. Here, some of 2023’s interns have shared their thoughts and reflections on their experiences.


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Olamide Belewu

I am an aspiring lawyer currently studying Law with French and French Law at the University of Nottingham.

I applied to the 10KBI Bar Programme because I wanted to gain insight into the types of work that barristers undertake and evaluate whether a career at the bar would be tailored to my strengths and personality. The 10KBI Bar Programme provided me with the unique opportunity to explore different practice areas in six different sets of chambers, as well as engage in invaluable conversations with those in the profession.

Across the six weeks, I particularly enjoyed enhancing my advocacy skills, attending court hearings, and networking with professionals who provided me with pearls of wisdom for my prospective career.

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Ayomikun Salami

I am an aspiring barrister, and have just graduated from the University of Warwick and plan to take the Bar Course next year.

I applied to the 10KBI Bar programme because I wanted to gain more exposure to life at the Bar. As the 10KBI Bar programme is a six-week rotation, this was a perfect way for me to experience different chambers and practice areas. I also applied so that I could meet many different people in the legal profession such as barristers, clerks, paralegals, and solicitors.

Lastly, I wanted to take part in the programme to see the reality of diversity at the Bar, and use this experience as a driving force to continue to pursue the difficult journey to the Bar.

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Joanna Oke

I am a Law with French Law student studying at University College London (UCL), who aspires to practise in commercial law. I have just completed the Bar Internship in the Summer before my year abroad.

I applied to participate in the Bar Internship programme because I wanted practical knowledge about the life of a barrister and to discover who the people behind the wigs and gowns are. This internship allowed me to explore the Bar for myself and network with a diverse range of practising barristers who offered insight into their personal career journeys.

The internship also brought my love for academic law to life: from sitting in the Court of Appeal and witnessing a murder trial, to investigating financial misconduct at the FCA and spending a day shadowing a judge, it has truly been an unforgettable experience which I wholeheartedly recommend!

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Vanessa Addo

I am an aspiring barrister who has just completed my law undergraduate degree, and started the Bar Vocational Studies at City University this September.

I applied to the 10KBI Bar programme because it is an invaluable opportunity to not only pursue my passion for law but also to get a feel for what life as a barrister is really like. There are certain challenges faced by Black individuals in accessing certain spaces within the profession. This internship is a unique platform to break through barriers as it grants access to beneficial opportunities and networks.

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Ehi Okpla

I am an aspiring barrister currently studying Law at the University of Manchester. I plan on commencing the BPC in 2025.

I have long been drawn to a career at the Bar because it combines my interests of advocacy and legal research. I applied to the 10KBI Bar Internship scheme to allow me to gain accurate insight into the daily tasks of a barrister. Shadowing barristers has not only allowed me to spend time in the courtroom environment that I find so stimulating, but also appreciate the extensive preparation that goes into preparing for a trial or a hearing. I have learnt so much about managing client expectations through attending conferences with lay and professional clients.

Trying my own hand at legal drafting has allowed me to hone my legal research skills and learn about civil and family procedure, stretching my legal knowledge well beyond my degree course. Overall, I have found the 10KBI Bar internship highly enriching. I am so grateful for the opportunity to not only enhance my own professional and academic legal skills, but also to network with so many barristers across a range of practice areas.


The Bar steering group is delighted to be delivering the 10KBI programme in 2024. The group welcomes chambers and organisations who are interested in taking part in the scheme to complete this form.