By Anna Nelson • January 17, 2008•Balancing Private and Professional Life
Ms. JD and The Project for Attorney Retention are sponsoring a $1,000 essay contest to answer the question, how do we close the gap between Baby Boomers and Millennials on work/life balance? The maximum length is 1500 words--so that's potentially, like, a dollar a word. (Seriously, I've read emails longer than that.) We hope you'll weigh in, whether you're a Baby Boomer, a Millennial, or somewhere in between. (Go Gen X! --That's my generation.) The entries will be judged by a panel of distinguished attorneys: Joan C. Williams, Cynthia Thomas Calvert, Linda Bray Chanow, Manar Morales, Natalie Hiott-Levine, and Linda Marks.
Here's the contest question:
Ms. JD and the Project for Attorney Retention promote work/life balance in the legal profession. When recent law school graduates push for more part time, flex time, or balanced hours, they are sometimes dismissed as "slackers." The message is: if you don't want to put in the work, pick another profession.
What would you say to a baby boomer law firm partner who thinks young lawyers are lazy and don't understand what the profession is all about? What would you say to a senior colleague who says she had to put in the work, so why shouldn't you? In short: what's your rationale for work/life balance reform in the legal profession?
You might contrast the work styles, lifestyles, or priorities of recent graduates with preceding generations of lawyers; compare the practice of law with other professions; assess the economics of work/life imbalances; or share persuasive personal experiences. Or, feel free to get creative and write us an argument unlike any of the examples we just mentioned.
Please limit your response to a maximum of 1500 words. No minimum word count is required.
The deadline is not for a while--essays are due February 29th. So if you or somebody you know might be interested, the short 'n easy contest application is posted at ms-jd.org/essaycontest.
Hope to hear from you at ms-jd.org/essaycontest by February 29th!