Forming relationships with mentors can be one of the most satisfying and professionally helpful activities you pursue in law school. At UVA Law we make it easy. In addition to the countless, informal mentorship relationships that emerge every day within our public service community, we offer the following formal mentorship and counseling opportunities:
- Public Service Alumni Mentors: PSA Mentors matches students interested in public service careers with alumni working in diverse jobs across the country for advice on choosing careers and navigating the public service landscape.
- Public Interest Law Association Mentors: PILA organizes a peer-to-peer mentorship program that matches first-year students with second or third-year students for sharing experiences about the public service job search, academics, and making the most out of law school.
- Program in Law and Public Service Mentors: Students admitted to the Program in Law and Public Service are matched with faculty mentors with a scholarly or practice focus in public service for advising about academics and public service legal fields.
- Law Alumni Connection: Students can connect with UVA Law alumni working in public service jobs all over the world by searching our Law Alumni Connection directory.
Throughout your three years at UVA Law and beyond, you’ll have access to a team of counselors at the Mortimer Caplin Public Service Center that focuses on helping you figure out what you want to achieve in public service and giving you the support you need to get there. Your goals matter to us. We know that the world will be a stronger, more equitable place with you working in it as a public service attorney.
Here are a few of the ways in which we approach our counseling:
- Highly Individualized Counseling. In the fall of their first year, students begin meeting with a dedicated PSC counselor to start exploring public service internships and jobs. We move forward with practical application goals, creating a set of tailored, professional documents for the job search, and building confidence in the interview room. Our work with second- and third-year students becomes even more rigorous and specialized as you begin to prepare for practicing in your chosen field.
- Team-Based Approach. We draw on our diverse legal experiences and employer contacts within the Public Service Center to help our students. Whether preparing postgraduate fellowship applications, drafting hypothetical questions for criminal law interviews, or strategizing for a government honors program interview, we partner with each other and with our colleagues in the public sector to give students every possible advantage.
- Support After Graduation. The relationships we build with students at UVA Law continue well past graduation. We enjoy counseling alumni who are making public service career transitions and have increased our capacity for this work through the efforts of Director of Public Service and Alumni Advising Lawton Tufts.
Tapping the UVA Law Network
"The Public Service Center paired me with a UVA Law alum, Joe, who is doing exactly what I am interested in. I have been able to bond with my alumni mentor over his experiences in public defense. He has talked me through options for different offices around the country and even offered to reach out on my behalf. It has been a truly enriching experience."
—Robbie Pomeroy ’19