bethb

Book Review: Ending the Gauntlet

Compare the following two quotes:1- “I feel like I’ve been incredibly fortunate in my circumstances, but I almost regret that I’m in the position I’m in…. The burden of running a home and taking care of kids is on me, and the work is incredibly stressful. And once a month, I’m the one who is paying the bills and I could be earning more, but I’m not willing to do that. So I’m at the point where I’m considering walking away.But so many women associates in this office look to me as their role model, and I can’t tell you…

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bethb

Ms. JD and My Big Firm Job Search

Editor's Note: As part of Ms. JD's 5th Birthday celebration, we'll be looking back at our favorite posts over the years.I did a bunch of applications before OCIP (during summer break), and I chose which firms to apply to in this pre-OCIP round based on their presence on the Ms. JD site as sponsors. I figured if they had given money to help start Ms. JD, they at least had women's issues on their radar. I wanted a place where I wouldn't have to explain why support for women at the firm was important to me- but where it was…

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bethb

Work/Life Balance:  A Student Concern?

Last week I attended an event at my law school presented by a localbar association entitled "Why Lawyers Leave: Creating an Environmentfor Work/Life Balance to Protect Human Capital and Promote Diversity. "Work/life balance expert Deborah Epstein Henry (founder of Flex-TimeLawyers LLC and author of The Cheat Sheet) presented more informationon the "2007 Best Law Firms for Women," her joint project with WorkingMother magazine, which was conveniently featured here on Ms. JD. Shepresented some of the statistics she found while researching for thelist, none of which were all too surprising. She also discussed herlatest article, due out in the next week…

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bethb

Call for Stories about Mentors

Call for Stories about Mentors Posted October 18th, 2007 by bethb I am currently writing a law review comment on the status of women at big law firms. I am particularly interested in the purported lack of effective mentoring for female associates at large firms. This is where you come in... I am asking women who are working/have worked/know women who have worked at large firms to share stories with me about the role mentors have played in their work life. I will not ask for names of firms or the women's names, even (if anonymity is a concern). I…

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bethb

Observations of a Judicial Extern

I am spending my summer working for a (female) judge. Since there is not much on the site regarding women in government jobs, I have decided to share some observations I have made over the past few weeks. There are over 30 externs working where I am situated. There are about twice as many female externs as male externs. I have several thoughts as to why this may be the case, but of course they are just my thoughts, and are not substantiated by much (or any) investigatory work on my part. It seems most (if not all) of the…

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bethb

In Denial?

Last night I attended a panel discussion sponsored by a women’s organization at my law school. I thought this would be a great opportunity to meet women who had successfully navigated different legal career paths and perhaps even tell them a bit about Ms. JD. Unfortunately, I left the discussion with the strange feeling that everyone in the room but me was suffering from serious denial. When a partner of a large firm was asked about sexism in the firm, she denied knowledge of any such incidents, despite having been with the firm for more than ten years. I couldn’t…

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bethb

Law: A Trade or a Profession?

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, two female professors from Boston University Law School addressed this issue. Apparently, in a prior article, Cameron Stracher, publisher of New York Law School Law Review and co-director of the program in Law & Journalism, berated legal education and the qualification of law students. He argued that practicing law does not require intellectual work, that it is a skill acquirable by mere practice and repetition. Stracher discussed a paralegal who practiced law without a license, summarizing his view: “He blustered, bluffed, threatened and cajoled with the best of them. He knew the law…

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bethb

What’s Wrong With The Times

In the fall of 2005, The New York Times published an article discussing a relatively recent- and somewhat disturbing- trend among young women at elite colleges in the U.S. The article revealed that more and more female students at top undergraduate institutions are deciding (as early as freshman year) that they will opt for stay-at-home-motherhood over a career. The students interviewed shared the notion that it would be impossible to be a successful career woman and a successful mother simultaneously. As a senior in college at the time, set to attend law school the following fall, I was shocked by…

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