Training

There are Many Paths To A Meaningful Legal Career – Civil Rights

There are Many Paths To A Meaningful Legal Career – Civil Rights

Law students develop many skills, abilities, and qualifications during law school which transfer to other areas outside of the law. There are rewarding careers in government, education, labor relations, nonprofits, regulatory affairs, management, policy analysis, human resources, and strategic planning for law school graduates. And of great interest to any law student soon to graduate, is that there are a vast number of resources that provide information related to alternative and non-traditional employment for anyone with a Juris doctorate. There are several jobs in the field of civil rights for which a law school graduate may qualify. Many civil rights jobs...

Continue reading

Transferable Skills Learned In Law School, Part 2

Transferable Skills Learned In Law School, Part 2

The skills learned by law students are obviously useful to them as attorneys but are also transferable to any type of business enterprise. This is the second part of an article on those skills learned in law school that are universally transferable. The following is based on the book, “The Road Not Taken,” by Kathy Grant and Wendy Werner, the authors outline the skills obtained from the typical tasks, such as studying and participating in Moot Court competitions, associated with law school. Strong motivational skills This may include the ability to work under pressure, the ability to complete projects, and the ability...

Continue reading

Transferable Skills Learned In Law School, Part 1

Transferable Skills Learned In Law School, Part 1

Lawyers learn many skills in law school including hard skills, which include the knowledge of the substantive law, and soft skills, which include analytical, managerial, and interpersonal skills. Not every law school graduate may find that he or she wants to use a law degree to practice law. Fortunately, as will be discussed in this blog in the coming year, law students learn many skills in law school that are transferable to almost any business. The following is based on the book, “The Road Not Taken,” by Kathy Grant and Wendy Werner, the authors outline the skills obtained from the daily...

Continue reading

Find Your Attorney Mentor

Find Your Attorney Mentor

It is an invaluable resource to find a mentor early in a young lawyer’s career. When CDTA Founder and Dean John Patrick Dolan started the California Desert Trial Academy (CDTA), he conceptualized an educational curriculum, not unlike that of a medical school residency program where doctors mentored residents and provided them with the opportunities to apply their new professional skills. As the CDTA approaches its tenth anniversary, the emphasis on each student finding his or her own attorney mentor is as strong as it was when the CDTA opened its doors in 2012. It’s a mantra in many blogs here on...

Continue reading

Expectations of Legal Interns, Part Two

Expectations of Legal Interns, Part Two

The California Desert Trial Academy’s (CDTA) unique educational platform focuses on students learning the soft skills in addition to the core substantive law. It also includes seeking mentorships and internships to further enhance legal studies with practical real-world experience. Law students should have some advanced notice about an internship and the tasks to be undertaken but won’t know for certain until finally beginning the internship. Anything can, and will, happen. The purpose of an internship is to provide an insightful learning experience for young law students, in return for a little bit (a lot) of hard work. *Organize information If the amount...

Continue reading

Expectations of Legal Interns, Part One

Expectations of Legal Interns, Part One

It is an exciting event when law students become legal interns for the first time. The scope of the responsibilities associated with an internship may vary from one firm to the next based on the number of attorneys an intern serves. An intern’s specific tasks vary based on the area of law the firm practices. Whatever an intern’s duties and jobs, no matter how exciting or mundane, the attorneys, office manager, and staff, have expectations of an intern’s performance. But then, so does every intern have high expectations in an internship. *Observe, learn . . . do From the moment an intern...

Continue reading

The Emotional Side Of Practicing Law: Managing Family Law Clients

The Emotional Side Of Practicing Law: Managing Family Law Clients

Managing clients is one of a family law lawyer’s most difficult, demanding, and challenging tasks. Family cases, or conflicts, pit two people who formerly had a close, loving, intimate relationship against each other. All at a time when the distance between them couldn’t be farther and their ability to reach a consensus couldn’t be less. A family law attorney must have the skill set to deal with clients on a psychological level and nurture them while they are in a highly emotional state. And all while trying to act in the best interests of any minor children. How and where does...

Continue reading

The Emotional Side Of Practicing Law: Family Law

The Emotional Side Of Practicing Law: Family Law

The law is never free of emotion since it is the result of the emotional reactions of humans to a given situation. The practice of family law involves serving clients of all cultures and socioeconomic backgrounds at a time when they are coping with and reacting to the disintegration of their families. It requires attorneys to possess a skill set unlike that of no other area of law. Some in the legal field perceive the practice of family law as requiring a low level of technical expertise, which simply isn’t true. While there is, in fact, much expertise necessary to engage...

Continue reading

The Soft Skills: Critical Thinking

The Soft Skills: Critical Thinking

Critical thinking has been the subject of much debate and discussion since the time of ancient Greek philosophers, Socrates and Plato. Critical thinking in the context of the practice of law requires law students to learn to question and analyze what they see, hear, read, think, and feel with the understanding that first impressions are often wrong conclusions and often change after studious, meticulous analysis. Critical thinking is one of several soft skills that attorney-advocates must utilize to meet the needs of their clients. The California Desert Trial Academy’s (CDTA) unique learning platform emphasizes that students learn the soft skills in...

Continue reading

Understanding A Law’s Purpose

Understanding A Law’s Purpose

Because legislation is the product of a deliberative and informed process, it has discernible purposes and objectives. Lawyers and judges utilize tools to examine a statute’s purpose and establish the legislature’s intent for enacting the statute. Once the legislative intent has been established, it may be used to understand and interpret a statute’s meaning. Many statutes begin with a preamble or purpose clause, which may provide guidance in discerning the intent of the legislature where the statute may be ambiguous. Lawyers faced with choosing between different plausible interpretations may refer to the statute’s purpose to make a final decision. However, where...

Continue reading