Insight into Diversity Covers UChicago Law's New Initiatives Around Diversity and Inclusion

Law School Recruitment and Assistance from Legal Groups Help Firms Diversify the Profession

The University of Chicago (U of C) Law School and New York Law School (NYLS) in New York City offer two examples of institutions that are stepping up efforts to diversify the profession by recruiting, retaining, and ensuring the success of underrepresented individuals.

For its part, U of C Law School hired Christopher Clarke as the director of diversity and inclusion in May 2019. A significant part of his role is to attend recruitment events across the country, building relationships and sharing his contact information with people from underrepresented populations who are interested in attending law school, in effect serving as “an extension of the admissions team,” he says.

Since joining U of C, Clarke also established a pre-law orientation program that took place this September for 20 first-year students from underrepresented groups. He likens the five-day program to “preseason” of the first year of law school, allowing students to “simulate what the real [law school] experience is like, knowing that it doesn’t necessarily have an academic impact but creates additional preparation opportunities.” Participants are exposed to the day-to-day rigors of legal education, ranging from in-class cold calling to managing student loans.

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