Last week aspiring attorneys got a rare chance to mingle with law firm leaders as part of a long-running program designed to prepare underrepresented students for careers in law.
Hogan Lovells held the 11th Annual 1L Diversity Welcome Reception Wednesday night in lower downtown Denver. The event, co-hosted by the Center for Legal Inclusiveness, welcomed first-year law students to the 1L Pledge to Diversity Program and treated them to a speech from federal judge Christine Arguello.
The 1L Pledge to Diversity Program connects local law students of diverse backgrounds with Colorado legal employers for the purpose of networking and hands-on career experience. For 2017, the program placed diverse students at paid summer internships with a record 36 employers.
“I was in your shoes not that many years ago,” CiCi Cheng, 1L Pledge executive committee co-chair, told attendees. “I was sitting in a room just like this … extremely terrified of my first experience at a big, fancy law firm office, where I’d never been in my entire life.” Cheng, who went through the 1L Pledge program herself, interned with Holland & Hart where she now works as an associate. The experience she got that first summer helped prepare her for the corporate world and the law firm environment, she said.