Seventy-three students began the six-month professional training course at the school at Courthouse Chambers, just across the road from the city’s landmark Circuit Court.
The Law Society said the establishment of the school, which has room for up to 180 students, was in response to an explosion in the number of trainee solicitors — up about 90% in the past four years.
“We are establishing in Cork in response to demand both in terms of numbers and in the desire that people can train somewhere other, and cheaper, than Dublin,” Law Society director general Ken Murphy said.
The society has arranged that its students will be registered as students of University College Cork during their training period.
The course is designed to equip trainee solicitors for the first three years of practice. It focuses on developing the core skills of legal practice, including advocacy, interviewing and drafting.
In 2002, 356 trainee solicitors started the professional practice course but this year that number leapt to 672.
Meanwhile, UCC Law Society’s annual conference, entitled Defamation, Privacy and the Law, will take place on Thursday, November 30.
Speakers will include Dr Eoin O’Dell of TCD, deputy Data Protection Commissioner Gary T Davis and Seamus Dooley of the NUJ. Up to 300 people are expected to attend the event at the Clarion Hotel.