Lawyerist Partners with Suffolk Law School’s A2P Program
Lawyers participating in Lawyerist Lab are teaming up with third-year law students at Suffolk Law School for a first-of-its-kind case study program. These law students will partner with a law firm owner and member of Lab and examine their business model and operations. This will provide first-hand insight to students about how they might structure their own law firm post graduation.
A2P Teaches Law Students Practical Skills for Building a Law Firm
The law students are all participants in Suffolk Law School’s Accelerator Practice, which is the capstone clinical component of the multi-year Accelerator to Practice Program (A2P). A2P is a comprehensive three-year course of study with practical training designed to prepare graduates for 21st-century small and solo practice. Professor James Matthews leads the program. “We want to equip our law students with the knowledge and practice skills they need to immediately contribute to or eventually create their own small firm,” said Matthews.
A2P provides students with training on practical lawyering skills, like counseling clients, negotiating, and arguing cases in court. But it goes beyond that by also teaching students how to build a viable law practice. Skills taught include building a marketing strategy and learning how to leverage technology to provide cost-effective legal services. Students in their third-year work in a Clinic where they represent actual clients in fee-shifting cases and participate in a related year-long seminar.
Students to Study Lawyerist Lab Members’ Businesses
Part of the upper-level curriculum is the Business of Practice. Taught by Andrew Garcia, students learn how to successfully run a law business in the future. Garcia also teaches in the year-long clinic seminar, which is designed to build on the topics introduced in his Business course. This year, A2P students will partner with Lawyerist Lab firm owners.
“It was an easy ‘yes’ for us and the attorneys in our Lab program,” said Stephanie Everett, CEO of Lawyerist. “The lawyers we work with jumped at the opportunity to connect with the students and help them explore how to create a healthier business.”
Students will examine their partner law firm using The Small Firm Roadmap as a textbook and guide. They’ll then determine how well their partner firm is executing on topics covered in the book.
- Creating a client-centric firm
- Working remotely
- Using technology
- Building a strategic marketing plan
- Making data-driven decisions with KPIs
The students’ final project will include a written case study on their partner firm.
“We’re excited about this opportunity with Lawyerist and to see what the students learn when they take an academic view of a functioning business,” said Garcia. “My hope is that this is a meaningful experience for everyone involved.”
Prospective law students who are interested in exploring how law school can prepare them for solo and small firm practice should explore Suffolk Law School’s Accelerator-to-Practice Program. Law firm owners who would like help and support building a healthier law firm should explore the coaching programs offered through Lawyerist Lab.
Last updated September 27th, 2022