Co-Counsel Program

The Co-Counsel Program is divided into two parts – a “Quick Connections” LinkedIn group as well as a traditional student-alumni 1:1 match. If you have any questions about the program, please reach out to Liz Foster (eafoster@wm.edu).

Quick Connections – LinkedIn Group

With constraints to in-person networking and programming due to COVID-19, we are expanding the Co-Counsel Program to include a private LinkedIn page exclusive to current students and alumni who are willing to connect with students throughout the year. We are calling this aspect of our Co-Counsel Program, “Co-Counsel Quick Connections”. Join the LinkedIn Page.

The Co-Counsel Quick Connections program was created to assist students in identifying W&M Law alumni who have expressed a willingness to answer questions about the practice of law in a particular geographic market, practice area, or practice setting, and to provide information about a typical career paths and the job search process generally. In addition to those engaged in law practice, some alumni work in alternative careers and can provide advice regarding some non-traditional uses of a law degree. The Quick Connections program is designed to allow students to have brief interactions with one or more alumni as the student investigates prospective career paths. The alumni found in this LinkedIn group differ from those found throughout LinkedIn generally because they have agreed to be contacted by students.

Since group members are not making a long-term commitment to work with a student, the following are typical discussion topics:

  • A particular practice area
  • A practice setting (e.g., federal agency, non-profit organization, civil legal services office, or law firm)
  • Typical work hours and compensation in their employment setting
  • Types of projects handled by them
  • Advancement opportunities in their practice area and setting
  • The state of the legal market or hiring practices
  • Career paths and exploration ideas
  • Class recommendations and clubs/journal experiences
  • Ways to expand your network

These discussions may be by phone or Zoom or may just be emails back and forth. The goal of this LinkedIn group is to provide express service and quick access to alumni.

If at any time you would like to take a break from advising, you can leave the group and, when you’re ready to reengage, rejoin! The structure of Quick Connections, paired with LinkedIn, give you the flexibility to move in and out of the program depending on your time commitment.

Co-Counsel 1:1 Match Program

Senior Co-Counsel Applications have closed for the 2021 program year. Matches will be made in February 2021 and will run through December 2021. If you missed your opportunity to sign up, please feel free to reach out to Liz Foster (eafoster@wm.edu) to learn about other ways to get involved. Alumni are also encouraged to join our Co-Counsel Quick Connections Program (above) at any time.

The Co-Counsel program is W&M Law School’s alumni to student long-term mentorship program designed to further the professional growth and development of law students through interaction with established or retired attorneys and professionals.

The traditional Co-Counsel program pairs law school students (Junior Counsel) with qualified and experienced alumni (Senior Counsel).  Senior Counsel share experiences and wisdom gained during their professional journey while volunteering their time to mentor, advise, and guide law students while they adjust to law school and prepare for life after law school. We will send out information to alumni in November and will launch the program in February 2021.

Matches will occur in the spring of a student's 1L year.  The requirement is for a one-year commitment (spring 1L - spring 2L) but we welcome matches to remain through graduation if both parties wish to do so.  Many build lifelong friendships and relationships.

If you are interested or need more information about the program contact Liz Foster, Director of Alumni Affairs, at eafoster@wm.edu.

 
Testimonials

Junior Counsel Testimonials

"I enjoyed hearing from a practicing attorney to remind me that law school is just the beginning and to look forward to a legal career."

"I enjoyed my co-counsel!  He was very nice & reached out to me over the spring semester to see how it was going.  When I was in D.C. he made time to meet up with me as well."

"It was great having an alum to rely on when I needed it.  It took away the awkwardness of finding someone on my own and trying to see if we had similar interests.  My Co-Counsel also gave me very helpful advice on how to use my time here efficiently."

"Having someone understand where I am coming from and being willing to listen and offer advice is invaluable."

Senior Counsel Testimonials

"I was able to help my junior counsel learn what environmental organizations/groups are in the area.  I also helped my junior counsel by giving her advice during her summer internship search and helped introduce her to the environmental group she will be ex-turning with next year.  I think the most impact aspect of the program is providing students with someone who can help guide them when they feel overwhelmed with options/decisions and want to hear from someone who went through the process recently."

"The most impactful thing about the program was speaking with a current William & Mary student and helping her navigate through the first year of law school.  It was also great to share some career advice and learn the future goals of my junior counsel."

"Interacting with the students is very fulfilling.  I'm delighted they're interested in getting advice from me.  It's a lot of fun working with them."