We recently caught up with Adam Youngman, trainee Solicitor at Allen & Overy, who volunteers as a school governor in his spare time. Adam has kindly shared with us some of his views about school governance and why careers education is so important in our society.

Adam is one of thousands of volunteers who make a difference to schools every year by being a school governor.

How and why did you become a governor?

I became a governor because I’m passionate about education and enhancing opportunities for young people. Coming from a comprehensive school myself, I am well aware of the limited resources that many schools have, and therefore the crucial role that professionals can have in building a constructive environment for young people.

How has your skillset benefited a board? 

My legal skills have very much helped me to analyse board documents thoroughly, including creating and scrutinising clear lines of accountability. They have also helped me look at evidence objectively and the importance of critical evaluation of key school metrics. Skills from sitting on the board have helped in my career too, most of all being able to observe governance and leadership in a non-legal setting.

Does your employer know about your volunteering?

My employer has always been very supportive and flexible around my school commitments, as education outreach is an important part of our pro bono.

What’s your opinion on the importance of careers education in schools?

Careers guidance is very important in schools, especially in more socio-economically deprived areas, where informing young people about different jobs can open their eyes to careers they may have never considered. I think work related learning is particularly important for vocational careers, giving the opportunity to try out a job before entering it full-time.

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to become a governor? 

My advice to anyone considering governance would be to get stuck in – everyone from all walks of life has something to bring to a board!

Adam Youngman, Trainee Solicitor at Allen & Overy


This article, as with all of this term’s campaign resources, was made possible through the support of  Allen & Overy. 

To find out more about the All pupils, every ambition: Future work campaign see our website.