The Women in Business Law Initiative’s Mentorship Program is an annual
collaboration between the Berkeley Center for Law and Business (BCLB), the
Berkeley Business Law Journal (BBLJ), and various Berkeley Law student-led
organizations, where first-year law students interested in business law are matched
with associates from BCLB partner firms, industry, and government agencies.
The program is designed to offer a platform through which young attorneys can
meet with first-year law students to share their advice and experience. It is a great
opportunity for students to obtain career advice and guidance as they navigate law
school, and to network with a diverse group of successful attorneys. The program
also provides attorneys an opportunity to cultivate relationships with some of the
brightest talent coming out of Berkeley Law!
How the Program Works
We accept applications from interested first-year law students, and from associate
attorneys working in partner law firms, industry, and government. Attorneys and
students are matched based on their interests and geographic locations. Please note
that while the program was initially founded in 2016 with the goal of providing
mentorship to female law students, the mentorship program is now open to
students and attorneys of all gender identities.
We facilitate the mentorship by organizing an annual kick-off mixer in late
January, followed by additional networking events throughout the next year.
Program participants are encouraged to meet periodically — we recommend a
a commitment of 2-4 hours every month.
Our students benefit from the advice of attorneys who have recently transitioned
from student to professional, and the attorneys that mentor them gain valuable
contact in their mentee. We believe that this relationship has the power to help both
students and attorneys achieve their goals.
“I benefited from this mentorship from amazing women a few steps ahead of me, and I want to be a resource for women coming up after me. It makes a world of a difference to see women, especially women of color, a few steps ahead in an industry that is still male-dominated.”
–Janice Dow ’17, Attorney at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe
“My mentor was a huge help to me as I made a number of difficult decisions about what I wanted my life to look like post-grad. She was so warm and willing to go into detail about the work that she does and how she decided that it was a good fit for her interests and skill set. She also helped me understand what made her choose her firm and walked me through a list of things to factor in when I did OCI myself. Her advice made an immeasurable difference and prepared me well for such a daunting process!”
–Kim Plumer ’21, JD Candidate, UC Berkeley School of Law
“I will always be grateful for my relationship with my mentor, which gave me great insight into life after law school. Her advice helped me navigate through law school and allowed me to make an informed decision about which career path to follow.”
–Jad Doudar ’19, LL.M.