Wednesday, May 18, 2022
I get a lot of fun calls, both from attorneys and from law students, looking for the right employment match in "elder law." For lawyers who are looking for "new attorneys" to help staff their growing law practices, the calls sometimes come just after the law school year is over in early May, when the students have already scattered to the winds or to their homes to study for July Bar Exams. Law Schools' Career Services offices welcome these calls year-round, but we can often be of more help to both sides of the employment equation when people reach out early in the spring or fall semesters.
Nonetheless, one of my favorite "secret" ways for students and attorneys to find each other is through Bar Association programming and Continuing Legal Ed programs. While students usually roll their eyes when, for example, I suggest attending an "educational" program such as Pennsylvania's Elder Law Institute (July 21-22, 2022), most of the students who do attend soon realize that these offer multiple opportunities to get to knew great practitioners and to network. I often "sponsor" my own summer research assistants to attend at least one full day of programming, especially if there is a meet-and-greet lunch or reception at the end of the day. Elder Law attorneys are just plain friendly. This is a win-win for students and prospective employers.
But even beyond elder law, I also recommend that law students reach out during the summers to potential "employers" via State and County Bar organizations in the area of the country where they hope to practice. For example, I recently noticed that in Arizona, the Maricopa County (Phoenix area) Bar Association is hosting a 2022 Diversity Summer Social on June 9, 2022 expressly for "interns, externs, summer and first year associates." I'm sure that "prospective" interns, externs, summer and first-year associates would also be welcome to "mingle with other summer associates, local judges and bar leaders."
I know that one of Pennsylvania's very respected "young" Elder Law attorneys is someone I first got to know as a student because we were both attending a State Bar Association meeting while he was "just" a first year law student. That's the kind of smart networking that can take people very far.