Published on: Friday, October 29, 2010
MINNEAPOLIS – The University of St. Thomas School of Law (Minnesota) is featured as one of the nation’s top law schools for externships in National Jurist’s October 2010 issue. Ranked #1 in the country for having the most externship placements per full-time student (2011 ABA data), the School of Law’s Mentor Externship program matches every current law student with a mentor during all three years of law school.
“The Mentor Externship program is among the top reasons students attend the law school,” said Program Director Dave Bateson. “We’re really trying to open up a whole world of possibilities for students to explore to make the right choice for them. When they leave, they’ve got a jump on being better lawyers and we’ve given them the best opportunity to pick the right path for themselves.”
All School of Law students are paired with mentors for each of their three years. The program has three specific objectives: to foster the highest levels of professionalism in students, to create an experiential window to view the world and to create activities in which students reflect upon and integrate their experiences.
Through these three objectives, students are encouraged to explore the various relationships in law. The intended outcome is for students to build meaningful connections so that they may better understand how to manage relationships with mentors, peers, potential clients, legal systems and communities.
The more than 470 mentors in the program this year included state Supreme Court justices and state and federal court judges. The pool of mentors also includes over 100 different practice areas. Thirty-nine percent of the mentors are women, a higher percentage than in the profession overall. From year to year, 80 percent of the mentors agree to participate in the program again.
The program twice has been recognized by the American Bar Association. In 2005, the program received the E. Smythe Gambrell Professionalism Award, which recognizes projects contributing to the understanding of professionalism among attorneys. That same year, it was one of three national finalists for the ABA award on innovations in teaching professionalism.
For more information on the University of St. Thomas School of Law Mentor Externship Program visit: Mentor Externship