We see our summer program as a crucial avenue for bringing our future partners, and future leaders, to Brooks Pierce. We seek summer associates whom we believe will find lasting success and satisfaction with us. We then support our summer associates in exploring their diverse interests, developing their practical skills and building confidence. Throughout the summer program, every member of the Brooks Pierce community strives to help our summer associates forge a keen client service orientation and an immutable ethical compass.
The program is designed to immerse each summer associate in the firm’s wide-ranging fields of expertise. The projects are selected to help our summer associates parse out the topics most compelling to them. Every bit as important, we seek to forge enduring relationships between our summer associates and our lawyers. Many of our lawyers have spent the majority of their careers with the firm, and the summer program lays the foundation for meaningful, productive and enjoyable professional and personal relationships for years to come.
Because we have far more partners than associates (a 4:1 of partners to associates), our summer program is naturally small and selective. This gives us the invaluable opportunity to work closely, one-on-one, with each summer associate to ensure a rich and rewarding experience. Our experienced Recruiting Director brings over two decades of career coaching experience to Brooks Pierce. She works with each summer associate to create an individualized, targeted program of projects and experiential activities designed to meet his or her unique background and interests. Her daily assistance and input helps each summer associate make the most of the summer.
Each summer associate is also matched with partner and associate mentors to offer guidance throughout the summer, and our Recruiting Director offers daily support and insight. Sources of guidance and perspective are even more plentiful, of course. By working with a host of our lawyers and professional staff at all levels and getting to know many more through our vibrant calendar of activities, summer associates can avail themselves of many models and methods of legal excellence—and gain the input of many more enthusiastic mentors and advisors on matters substantive and informal.
One exciting aspect of work and life at Brooks Pierce is the immediacy of associate involvement and responsibility, and this starts during the summer program. Our summer associates are immersed in meaningful, time-sensitive, ‘real’ legal work—and they have the opportunity to see the results of their efforts. Summer associates see their contributions in action, whether in an oral argument, negotiation, closing or client meeting. Our summer associates, like our associates, contribute from the first—and their contributions are acknowledged and appreciated.
Experiential activities often result in challenging, interesting projects, and any hearing, oral argument, negotiation, closing or other event can be instructive and inspiring. Our lawyers seek every opportunity to include summer associate when they venture to court or to a client meeting—and then to keep the summer associate involved.
We hire both first- and second-year law students to work with us as summer associates. Also, from time to time, we may employ a recent law school graduate for part of the summer prior to the commencement of his or her judicial clerkship. Our summer program typically lasts ten weeks, beginning in late May and ending in early August. Within those parameters, summer associates are free to choose when their tenure will begin and end. Summer associates are also allowed to split their summers with another firm.
We host several events throughout the summer to promote strong bonds among the members of the summer associate class and between summer associates and lawyers. Many of our lawyers have spent their legal careers at Brooks Pierce and first forged friendship and respect during that first summer. These events are also a helpful tool to introduce summer associates to the cities where we work and live.
Summer social events include concerts, baseball games, wine or beer tastings, game nights, golf and tennis outings, a weekend mountain retreat, and informal get-togethers. We also endeavor to offer our summer associates work and social exposure with as many Brooks Pierce lawyers as possible, as well as the legal and business communities in which so many members of the Brooks Pierce community are involved. We have launched a joint educational and networking program with Credit Suisse. The series gives our summer associates the chance to learn about the inner-workings of a global financial services company, how to look at business and legal problems from a client’s perspective and how to apply that insight to contract review and drafting.
We are also committed to social action and service. In 2014, we worked with The Barnabas Project, a non-profit organization that refurbishes and provides furniture for refugees, domestic violence survivors and families emerging from homelessness. We conducted a firm-wide “Beds for Children” campaign to raise the funds to prepare a hotel’s worth of bed for their clients, and summer associates and attorneys spent a day of service helping out at Barnabas. Brooks Pierce partner Libby Brewington is the former board chair of Barnabas, and other lawyers are committed to the organization.
If you are interested in becoming a summer associate with Brooks Pierce, please contact Gail Cutter, our Director of Recruiting and Professional Development at firstname.lastname@example.org Take part in OCI at your law school. 2L students are also invited to apply in July, and 1L students are welcome to apply in December.