Diversity Leadership Academy
We offer two annual award-winning Diversity Leadership Academies — one for law students and one for mid-level associates — that develop and empower the next generation of lawyers and leaders.
The Student Diversity Leadership Academy is for first-year law students and provides strategies for success in law school and beyond, insight into practicing at a global law firm, and community building opportunities with Latham lawyers and peers who share a commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in the legal profession. All first-year law students (class of 2026) interested in our US-based or London offices are eligible to and encouraged to apply.
Professional Development and Training
The Student Diversity Leadership Academy is a substantive professional development and training program providing first-year law students with the information and skills needed to successfully navigate the law firm interview and hiring process, and transition from law student to practicing attorney. Students will participate in interactive seminars on a variety of topics, including resume writing, interview skills, diversity, equity and inclusion, pro bono, and effective communication. Sessions will be led by Latham lawyers, many of whom serve in leadership positions at the firm (including members of our Executive, Recruiting, and Diversity Leadership Committees), as well as external speakers who are subject matter experts in their fields.
Networking and Building Community
Participants will join an exclusive cohort of Diversity Leadership Academy attendees, providing an invaluable opportunity to network and build relationships with like-minded peers from the top law schools in the US.
The Student Diversity Leadership Academy also offers a unique opportunity to develop professional connections with our lawyers and firm leaders through interactive seminars, discussion groups, and social activities. These connections are particularly valuable for students interested in meeting Latham lawyers, and for learning more about Latham and Big Law in general.
Each participant will be assigned to a mentoring pod with other Diversity Leadership Academy attendees and led by a Latham lawyer mentor. The Latham Lawyer mentor who will serve as a resource for professional development and career advice throughout the remainder of the participant’s law school career. In addition, the mentoring pod will serve as a source of community and empowerment during the Diversity Leadership Academy and beyond.
The application process is open to law students of all backgrounds who have just finished their first year of law school (class of 2026) at an ABA-accredited school, regardless of race, color, religion, citizenship, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, military service, disability, or any other characteristic or condition protected by applicable law.
Latham’s Recruiting Committee will evaluate all applications, considering the following factors:
- Demonstrated commitment to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in their communities and/or in the legal profession
- Academic and leadership achievements
- Obstacles or challenges (financial or otherwise) encountered in advancing career objectives
- Life experiences that have shaped values (including a commitment to DEI) and professional goals
- A desire to practice at a global law firm
A complete application package must include the following items:
- Completed online application
- Unofficial or official 1L law school transcript
- In your application confirmation email, you will find a link to submit your transcript. Please ensure that you submit your transcript only after all your semester/quarter grades have been finalized. Your application will only be considered complete once we have received your transcript.
- Personal statement (500 to 1,000 words) addressing one or more of the following:
- Your resilience and tenacity in pursuing your professional goals
- How you will contribute to Latham’s inclusive culture and diverse community
- Experiences that have shaped your commitment to DEI and belonging in your community and the legal profession
Dates and Deadlines
To express interest in the Diversity Leadership Academy, you must apply through our application for the 2024 1L Diversity Scholars Program. Applications are now closed. View this recruiting timeline to better understand the key dates for the JD class of 2026.