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College of Law creates incubator for solo practice lawyers

July 25, 2014

The Loyola University New Orleans College of Law Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic and Center for Social Justice will soon be training a new wave of solo practice lawyers equipped with the skills and real-world know-how to address the legal needs of poor or moderate-income individuals. With help from a new grant from the American Bar Association, the college is launching the Loyola Incubator Program—an intensive, year-long mentorship and skills program for recent graduates of Loyola’s College of Law.

Five young lawyers in their first three years of solo practice will receive the opportunity to not only launch their solo careers, but have access to mentorship, peer feedback, resources, instructions, case referrals and training in law office management. Participants in the Loyola Incubator Program will also give back to the community by providing a significant amount of pro bono legal service throughout the 12-month program, which focuses on social justice-oriented solo practice work.

The College of Law was one of only six programs around the country to receive the full grant awarded through the American Bar Association’s Legal Access Job Corp initiative. The grant will help fund the pro bono component of the Incubator Program.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to continue training our graduates as they enter the profession. The American Bar Association has recognized the good work that takes place at the College of Law, and it is very gratifying,” said College of Law Dean María Pabón López.

“We are so pleased to provide this wonderful opportunity for our graduates and our community,” said Davida Finger, associate clinical professor in the law clinic. “The Loyola Incubator Program demonstrates the College of Law’s commitment to providing outstanding legal training and to using the law for social justice ends.” Finger, who teaches the Community Justice section of the Loyola Law Clinic, will serve as the inaugural director of the Loyola Incubator Program.

The Loyola Incubator Program will go a long way toward teaching best practices and professionalism for a cadre of new attorneys each year. The program will also provide a critical service in the local community on the unmet legal needs of low income and modest means individuals who cannot otherwise afford attorneys and access to justice.

For more information about the Loyola Incubator Program, contact Davida Finger at 504-861-5596 or dfinger@loyno.edu.

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Loyola at a Glance is written and distributed for the faculty, staff, students and friends of Loyola University New Orleans. It is published by the Office of Public Affairs, Greenville Hall, Box 909, 7214 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118. (504) 861-5888.

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