Pro Bono and BigLaw: Public Interest Work in Private Practice
This seminar will expose students to the real-world considerations related to large law firm pro bono practice in order to help them do pro bono work while being successful associates in their billable practice. The first session will introduce students to law firm economics and explore how the top law firms can run large pro bono programs and how this affects the firm’s bottom line. Students will learn about law firm pro bono policies, explore motivations to do pro bono, and learn how to navigate obstacles to pro bono. Finally, we will explore pro bono in practice, including balancing billable matters with pro bono matters, working with legal service organizations, and partnering with clients on pro bono. Students will be provided with reading materials, and leaders within the legal profession will appear as guest lecturers. Grades will primarily be based upon an assignment to interview law firm and public interest leaders and synthesize those conversations.