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Law School Collaborates in Launch of Philadelphia Judicial Fellowship Program

February 11, 2011

The Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas has created a Judicial Fellowship Program that will provide up to 43 recent graduates of the law school and two other city law schools with professional development opportunities.

Graduates of the Earle Mack School of Law, Temple University’s Beasley School of Law and the University of Pennsylvania Law School are eligible to apply for the unpaid fellowships, which will begin in the spring.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for some of our graduates to add to their repertoire of skills while expanding professional networks that will help them find paying jobs," said Professor Chapin Cimino.

Cimino said the Honorable Lisa M. Rau of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas broached the idea with her to brainstorm strategies for getting the program started.

"Needless to say, we jumped at the opportunity to help our graduates during this downturn in the job market," Cimino said. "The program is also a boon to Philadelphia’s court system, which handles an extremely high caseload."

Judge Rau formed a steering committee, which Cimino and Associate Director of Career and Professional Development Alexandra Vecchio joined to bring the proposal to fruition.

Starting this spring, fellows selected by judges will begin working with judges in the Court’s Civil, Criminal, Family and Municipal divisions. The fellows will work at least 20 hours per week, handling the same duties as paid clerks. They are free to leave the program with two weeks’ notice when they find paid employment.

The program will feature receptions and other events where the fellows will have networking opportunities with members of the Philadelphia Bar Association.

"These events will give the fellows an opportunity to shine – and to expand their professional networks," Vecchio said. "I certainly hope our alums will pursue this wonderful opportunity."

Click here for more information on the program and applications materials.