Firm Awards Law Preview Scholarships to 85 Students

In its second year sponsoring students in law school prep courses, Latham expands its program and adds intellectual property scholarships.

October 12, 2012

Walking through the classroom doors on the first day of law school can be daunting for even the brightest and most earnest students. But, for the 85 law students who were awarded Latham’s Law Preview scholarships this year and participated in the program, the experience was perhaps a bit less intimidating.

What is Law Preview?

The Law Preview program is an intensive, week-long summer prep program designed for students about to enter their first year of law school. “Many of our applicants have no relatives or specific role models who are lawyers, said Sharon Bowen, a partner in the New York office and Co-chair of Latham’s Diversity Committee.  “Part of the goal of the program is to give these students an overview about law school, how to take notes in class, how to prepare for exams, analyze cases and write concisely. In doing so, they walk in the door the first day of law school bettered prepared and more confident.”

Latham began offering scholarships to the Law Preview program in 2011 after Ann Miller, then the firm’s Chief Attorney Development Officer, heard about the program from a colleague at another firm. “We thought it was a great opportunity to capture people before they even begin law school, to offer some assistance and make sure that they are as prepared as they can be for law school,” said Miller. “At the same time, it is nice for the firm because it gets our name out there to a large pool of law students.”

Increasing The Pool of Diverse, Qualified Candidates

The scholarships Latham offers are part of the firm’s diversity pipeline  “Our viewpoint is that if we can help give people a leg up or help level the playing field for people who would not otherwise have had that opportunity to do better in school, it’s in our best interest,” said Bowen. “Our bigger goal is to increase the number of diverse candidates who are interested in practicing at big law firms.”

In 2012 Latham awarded 85 scholarships, up from 55 in 2011, and added several scholarships specifically for students with an interest in Intellectual Property (IP). “It’s extremely difficult to get good IP people,” said Max Grant, Global Co-chair of Latham’s Intellectual Property Litigation Practice Group. “The necessary combination of disparate skills, meaning technical training, industry experience, potentially some language skills and a quality legal education leaves a very small subset of people once you matrix those qualifications on top of each other.” With five IP-specific scholarships offered this year, Grant is optimistic about the return on investment. “I’m hopeful these scholarships will help create a larger pool of IP talent from which the firm can hire,” he said.

Recipients Sing Law Preview & Latham’s Praises

Though it is too early to see any measurable impact in terms of hiring, feedback from scholarship awardees has been overwhelmingly positive. In a note to the firm one 2012 recipient wrote, “I am immensely appreciative of this extraordinary investment in my future as an aspiring legal advocate, and my appreciation grows more profound with each passing week of classes. Law Preview left me with a sense of confidence, a concrete strategy for success and a deep commitment to make the very best of my legal education.”

Find Out More

Students who are accepted to schools where Latham offers Law Preview scholarships will receive application information directly from their schools. If you have questions or would like additional information please contact Elizabeth Krichmar.


 

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