The overall goal of the Foster Swift summer program is to provide summer associates with a nurturing atmosphere that expands their knowledge of law. Toward that end, we provide opportunities to experience the practice of law while giving Summer Associates several avenues to demonstrate their legal abilities.
We generally assign summer associates to one of the firm's primary practice groups. Throughout the program, Summer Associates are given a variety of assignments to enable them to identify subject areas in which they may ultimately wish to practice.
Summer associates are not required to bill a minimum number of hours. However, they will experience private practice as if they were first-year associates. This, we believe, best allows the firm to evaluate prospective lawyers and allows the summer associates to evaluate Foster Swift and the culture of our firm.
We have created a variety of ways to make sure our Summer Associates have great experiences. To facilitate transition into the firm and to learn about the firm's culture, an associate "buddy" is assigned to each summer associate. At social events, the buddy assists with all aspects of integration, including introductions and answering questions about appropriate attire and the firm’s customs.
In addition, each Summer Associate gets a mentor. This attorney monitors assignments and workload, ensures exposure to many lawyers and practice areas and helps develop client contact skills.
Evaluations and feedback are two of the most important aspects of the entire experience. Attorneys are encouraged to provide immediate feedback to Summer Associates on each completed assignment.
A formal performance review, where all assigning attorneys complete comprehensive evaluations, takes place at the end of the summer. Formally, through this process, and informally, through the mentor, Recruiting Specialist, and other relationships developed throughout the summer, our Summer Associates get feedback on a regular basis.
At Foster Swift, our summer program is more than a good way to spend a summer. It's a great way to begin a rewarding career with our firm.