Abbie Heller, ’14, never doubted that she was destined to work as a criminal defense attorney until she became a 1L. The resolve she’d felt since elementary school, that she belonged in a courtroom, wilted when she encountered the reality of law school. Was she in the right place?
But her doubts had little time to sink in, because a trio of mentors would soon convince Heller that she was on the right path.
Mentoring the Mentors
If relationships could be described in mathematical terms, Shira Katz Scanlon might be defined as a mentor squared.
A member of the adjunct faculty who leads the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Seminar, Katz Scanlon works with current students who teach Philadelphia teens about the relevance of the constitution in their lives and groom them for high-school moot court competitions.
Mentors and Mentees
As the ranks of Kline School of Law alumni grow, an increasing number of attorneys with a JD from Drexel University are serving as mentors to law students and junior lawyers.
Kline School of Law mentors are helping to burnish the school’s reputation as a key player in the legal community in Philadelphia and beyond. Yet given the school’s status as a relative newcomer, many Kline School of Law alumni are junior enough to straddle the roles of mentors and mentees.
Mr. In Between
Sekou Lewis earned his JD in 2012, but five years have not dimmed his memory of how it feels to be a law student surrounded by experienced and accomplished attorneys.
“It’s intimidating for young lawyers,” Lewis said. “It’s especially intimidating for students.”
In 2016, Lewis began supervising Kline School of Law students completing co-op placements at Schnader Harrison, the behemoth firm he joined in 2012, where he represents private and public companies, nonprofit organizations and municipalities in real estate and corporate matters and serves as vice chair of the firm’s Sports Law team.
Peer to Peer
Sometimes a cold call can lead to a meaningful connection.
Nearing the end of a two-year stint with AmeriCorps’ Public Allies program, Jack Stucker, ’13 was certain about his career interest—housing rights—but he still had reservations about investing in a legal education. So he phoned law school administrators in the region to ask how their programs might help him take his advocacy to the next level, and make a living.
That’s how he came to know Susan Brooks, associate dean of experiential learning. “Dean Brooks and I had a very good conversation, and she helped persuade me that going to law school would be a good idea,” he said.