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 the CDTA website – learn from those who are experienced. And to this end, many of the faculty, attorneys and judges, and other legal professionals at the CDTA are happily willing to contribute their time and knowledge to CDTA students. CDTA’s professors are practicing attorneys, legal scholars, and judges who are excellent sources for CDTA law students finding their mentor.
Also, CDTA’s Saturday Barrister’s Luncheon includes weekly speakers from the local Coachella Valley legal community, as well as guests from all over California. These speakers are all potential mentors for CDTA students, and are happy to share their vast knowledge accordingly. These speakers, as well as several of our professors, have employed CDTA graduates as associate attorneys in their firms. CDTA helps students find their mentors and realize the benefits of effective mentorship.
You never know when and where you may find a mentor. It may someone with whom you have much in common personally and professionally. Yet, when you find a mentor, it may be in the context of an area of law that you never contemplated practicing. A mentor can help you consider and find a new career path, that helps you realize well-established and evolving personal and professional goals. This may help young attorneys discover a level of contentment and self-satisfaction at an earlier point in their legal careers. In other words, a mentor can help you find happiness sooner than later.
You can consider a mentor who practices law in an area in which you are interested. If you want to be a criminal defense attorney, then find a criminal defense attorney whose practice, record, and experience pique your interest. Someone whom you want to emulate professionally. Someone whom you admire.
Also. consider that the personal chemistry between mentor and student is crucial to getting the most out of the mentorship. Thus, looking in an environment where there are lawyers who possess similar ambitions and goals may be the best place to find a mentor. Perhaps someone who practices law in the public sector would be more appealing than a private-sector attorney. It is therefore not an unwise course of action to consider all options and look in places you may not normally search when seeking a mentor. You may be surprised by who and what you find.
While not every law school places importance on learning from attorney mentors, CDTA believes that mentors provide substantial benefits to graduates’ early success as practicing attorneys. The California Desert Trial Academy can help students find their mentors so they may gain and develop the practical experience to find success as attorney-advocates. Mentors cannot substitute for personal experience, but they can offer the benefits of their years of experience.
CDTA students are privileged with the ability to access the valuable experience of the CDTA faculty and legal professionals that students meet and interact with at the CDTA College of Law. If you are interested in becoming an exceptional legal advocate, consider the benefits of an experienced mentor. Consider the California Desert Trial Academy. CDTA’s growing family of student and alumni attorneys freely and openly share their legal experiences, career advice, and academic tips. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.