The goal of the Diversity Leadership Academy is to increase the numbers of female and other traditionally underrepresented lawyers at large law firms, in general, and among our partnership and leadership ranks, in particular.
The Academy is a multi-day, in-person professional development program for law students and mid-level Latham associates who have a strong interest in diversity, making it a powerful recruitment and retention initiative.
For two days, attendees participate in training sessions and networking events, with the goal of inspiring the next generation of diverse leaders in the legal industry. Training sessions for law students cover such topics as transitioning from law student to summer associate, resume writing, and interview skills. In addition, all first-year law student attendees are paired with a Latham associate, who is committed to serving as a mentor throughout the student's law school career. Latham associates attend sessions on leadership, executive presence, communications skills, and other strategies for advancement and success. Our firm leaders and partners also attend the academy, serving as presenters and mentors to the associates and law students.
Feedback is overwhelmingly positive. Since the academy's inception, over 90% of our associate attendees consistently agree that the program provides them with valuable professional development training and helps build a stronger sense of community at the firm. In addition, nearly 100% of this year's student attendees rated the academy as "excellent" or "very good."
It’s incumbent upon each of us to do whatever we can to increase diversity and foster inclusion in our industries and professions. At Latham & Watkins, we are committed to helping those from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds find a path to success.