Pleased to be in southern California this week for meetings with distinguished Northwestern law alumni. This is a top market for our grads and, naturally, we are represented well in law firms and corporations throughout the region.
This morning, we had a good meeting with alum partner at major multi-national firm, reflecting upon the challenges facing young lawyers in this new era. He emphasized, as have other well-positioned alums, the importance of developing serious quantitative skills as preparation for transactional partice. Also, law students should learn the skills necessary to interact constructively with clients, interactions both written and verbal. This skill-building has long been a strength of Northwestern law school and we continue to refine our curriculum and programs to accomplish these critical objectives.
So far as our footprint in Los Angeles is concerned, we look forward to building our alumni club in the area and to providing opportunities and incentives for our LA alums to network with one another. And we certainly do look forward to seeing them when they pass through Chicagoland.
Come by Lincoln Hall at the Law School later this evening (6 pm) to hear about the launch of a remarkable new project — the CWC’s new effort focused on wrongfully incarcerated women. This program supplements in a critical way the extraordinary work of the CWC over its existence. Sadly, the needs of justice — that is, of righting injustice — continues relentlessly. With CWC, Northwestern can organize the work of able lawyers, students, and staff in order to make a real difference. This particular focus on women is the logical next step in the constructive program of this peerless organization.
Law schools have traditionally configured their external relations programs within discrete silos. Alumni relations deals with particular outreach (sometimes ambitious, other times more mechanical) usually in the form of receptions, reunions, and the like. Development is, of course, about fundraising. Career services is about placement . . . you get the point.
However, our aim is to think about the larger project of external relations as a coherent, structured, and quite purposive process of engaging with myraid stakeholders in the legal and business community about what Northwestern is about and, further, what is in it for them in partnering with our law school. During the past year, we have moved in this more comprehensive direction in tangible ways:
- Earlier this year, we created a new position, Assistant dean of External Partnerships, the purpose of which is to reach out to current and potential partners in law firms and in the business community in order to develop targeted initaitives which create mutual value for their organizations and our law school. We build on the reputation of key existing partnerships, including the Securities Regulation Institute, the Corporate Counsel Institute, and the Garrett Institute, and we look to leverage nascent connections in order to create new, vibrant opportunities to work collaboratively with important legal and corporate partners. The ADEP (Juliann Cecchi) and her staff are the point persons for these initiatives;
- We are working with a prominent law firm, Kirkland & Ellis, to implement one of their principal objectives, that is, the creation of a special law and business forum for business leaders & C-suite executives on developments in law and business. In this regard, we will be working with our colleagues at the Kellogg Business School to set up this program;
- As part of our efforts to expand the work and influence of the world-class Searle Center on Law & Regulation, we are setting up an advisory board of prominent legal and corporate leaders to assist our efforts;
- The Career Strategy office is working closely with External Partnerships to broaden our relationships with law firms, particularly mid-size law firms, in order to improve the employment prospects of our students. We are working on targeted job fairs, some with other leading law schools, in order to expand opportunities. Moreover, we are developing strategies to expand relationships with law firms and governmental employers in Washington DC, a major employment location by any measure;
- Judicial clerkships: We are ramping up considerably our efforts at judicial clerkships, by leveraging the expertise and energy of key faculty members who have developed successful strategies for clerkship placement.;
Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to meet with distinguished law firm leaders as part of a program called the “managing partners roundtable.” During that meeting, we were able to reflect upon the values of these kinds of purposive external relations strategies. I am convinced that it is only through these kinds of ambitious, multidmensional, and collaborative endeavors that we can consciously expand the footprint of Northwestern Law School.
Interesting commentary from NU Law labor relations expert.
Now what does he think of the Hostess kerfuffle??? Comment on Twinkiesgate?
From an announcement I sent to Law School community earlier this week:
I am delighted to report that Professor Emily Kadens is joining the Northwestern Law School faculty, effective January 1, 2013. She comes to Northwestern from the University of Texas where she has taught for the past several years.
Emily is that rare combination of outstanding legal scholar, devoted teacher, and peerless institutional citizen. I am thrilled that she is bringing her talents to Chicago where she will find a welcoming professional home. Please join me in congratulating Emily, and us, on this terrific news.
Here in Minneapolis for visits with alumni and for reception tonight. We have a large cadre of NU alums in the Twin Cities, working in law firm and in-house se
As this article indicates, economic tough times at law schools has shrunk the capacity of law schools to hire new faculty. Bucking this trend, we are hard at work in recruiting excellent new teachers and scholars. Hiring terrific young faculty members is critical to our success — in our curriculum and in our research profile. Even in the face of difficult resources dilemmas, we will keep as a priority faculty recruitment. We have always looked to bring the best and brightest to our faculty. We will be equally ambitious in the present and the future!