Kerr Russell’s summer associate program is designed to replicate the working environment and the assignment load experienced by the firm’s first year attorneys. Summer associates receive their assignments directly from the responsible attorney, and are expected to produce work product in a timely manner and of a quality consistent with that which we expect from our first year attorneys.
Although summer associates’ time is billed, we do not set rigid billable hour targets for our summer associates. The Recruiting Committee closely monitors the workload of all summer associates to ensure that they have an adequate opportunity to demonstrate their abilities and excel without being overwhelmed.
Kerr Russell typically hires two to three summer associates each year who have completed their second year of law school. Rarely, the firm will hire summer associates who have completed their first year of law school. The number of summer associates the firm hires is meant to approximate the number of entry-level attorneys we anticipate hiring for the following year. This way, our summer associate program does not turn into a “competition” for too few first year attorney positions.
Kerr Russell seeks law students who have demonstrated exceptional academic performance, both in their law school and undergraduate course work. In addition, we look for candidates who are mature, can take responsibility for assignments and timely complete them with the quality our clients have come to expect from Kerr Russell. We prioritize candidates who show initiative and are excited about working in a challenging and sophisticated legal environment. Finally, we seek candidates of the highest integrity and character.
Two weeks before the summer associates begin work, all attorneys are asked to reserve one or two assignments they feel are appropriate for a summer associate. Several initial assignments are given to the summer associates on their first day of work. Throughout the summer, assignments will continue to come directly from the firm’s attorneys to the summer associates. The Recruiting Committee monitors the summer associates’ time reports and workload to ensure that each summer associate is being provided with a variety of assignments from a number of different attorneys. Kerr Russell does not hire summer associates or attorneys out of the summer associate program for particular practice areas. Summer associates are expected to complete assignments from all of the firm’s practice areas. Additionally, the firm encourages all attorneys to arrange for summer associates to accompany them to their court appearances, depositions, closings, client meetings and similar experiences outside of the office. We believe that this is a very important part of the summer associate experience. Summer associates will also participate in various formal and informal firm social events.
Summer associates receive their work assignments directly from the attorneys responsible for the work. The responsible attorneys providing the assignment will provide direct feedback to the summer associates immediately upon their review of the work product. Twice each summer, the summer associates meet individually with the Recruiting Committee for a more general review of their performance. These reviews are also an opportunity for the summer associates to discuss any concerns they may have and to seek answers to their questions about the firm.
The members of the firm’s Recruiting Committee act as mentors for the summer associates. The reasons for this include: (1) as a result of the recruiting process and communications, until the summer associates commence working, the members of the Recruiting Committee will be most familiar with the summer associates, and (2) the Recruiting Committee members put forth tremendous time and effort into recruiting summer associates and thus, in a sense, are “invested” in the summer associates success. As set forth in the section entitled “First Year Associates,” mentors are provided for first year associate attorneys at the firm.
Summer associates who have completed their second year of law school will be paid $2,115 per week and will also receive paid parking. Kerr Russell will consider a summer associate’s request to split the summer. However, these decisions are made on a case-by-case basis and all summer associates are required to work at the firm for a minimum of ten weeks, but no more than twelve weeks.