The Armenian Bar Association Mentorship Program matches students with attorneys with the aim of helping students adjust to law school, learn more about the legal market, and meet other Armenian Bar members. The attorney participants accomplish these objectives by providing career-related advice and by bridging the gap between the somewhat insulated academic environment and the ever-expanding outside professional world. We invite and encourage all law student members to take part in and advantage of this excellent program.
In order to meet individual student needs, the mentorship program offers considerable flexibility to its participants. Many students are not yet sure how they intend to use their law degree and find the program helps them explore a variety of career options. Students who have initial plans to focus on a specific practice area may use the program to meet practitioners in that field and learn more about the “real world” beyond law school. Others may consult with mentors for practical advice on the job search process, and use the mentorship program as a networking resource.
With such a diverse and distinguished group of potential mentors, it is likely that there will be a wide array of creative and individual approaches to mentoring, depending on the mentors’ experience, time availability, and personality. What will not vary is the common understanding that mentors will generously volunteer their time and knowledge to assist law students, offering support and advice as well as opportunities for their mentees to observe the law in vivid color. This is often accomplished when students “shadow” their mentors to meetings, court proceedings, or legal programs. Eligible students are those who are currently enrolled in law school and are members of the Armenian Bar Association.
Potential mentors and interested students are asked to complete a registration form of pertinent background information. Based upon the data contained in the registration form, mentors and students will be matched as closely as possible, with the aim of addressing the interests and needs of the student.
It is anticipated that each mentor and student pairing will engage in at least four (4) mentoring encounters within one year of the match. These meetings can be in-person, over email, or by telephone, as needs and schedules warrant.
Mentoring sessions should entail introducing the student to a practical and realistic viewpoint of the expectations and requirements of legal education and the legal profession. For first-year students, the participants may delve into discussions of various areas of law, good study habits, available resources, and any special needs or concerns that may surface.
For second- and third-year law students, the mentorship program will include the previously-described activities and encompass discussions on securing employment or externships in law firms, businesses or governmental agencies, and on improving resumes and effective interviewing skills. The third-year law students’ program will include all of the above plus advice on preparation for the bar examination and the search for a permanent job in the legal profession.
It is our hope that the mentor/student relationship will develop into a trusting and nurturing friendship, mutually beneficial and rewarding over an extended period of time.
How does it work?
The Armenian Bar serves as the liaison between students and attorneys, recruiting attorney-volunteers into the program and matching students with appropriate mentors.
Attorneys who volunteer to mentor students are asked to complete a mentor profile form. Mentor profiles are organized by practice area, and include the name of the mentor’s firm/company/organization, area(s) of specialization or expertise, as well as contact information.
Student members who would like to learn more about the program may contact the Armenian Bar liaison at the email address listed below. Students should think about what they are looking for in a mentor – as far as practice area(s), experience, geographic location or other characteristics. Next, students should complete the mentorship application and attach a resume. The Armenian Bar will select specific mentors whose background and experience match the students’ interests. Before meeting with a mentor, the student should take some time to think about what he/she hopes to get out of the experience. It is up to the student to ask for the information he/she seeks. The Armenian Bar liaison can help if students are having difficulty articulating mentoring objectives.