Joining a Bar Association is a great way to network
with lawyers, and every Bar Association encourages law students to join. In addition to networking events, many Bar
Associations offer scholarships to law students. Bar Associations are loosely based upon one of three
- Geographic Characteristic, such as the Beverly Hills Bar Association, Santa Monica Bar Association, and the Glendale Bar Association;
- Personal Characteristic, such as the Black Women Lawyer’s Bar Association, Lesbian & Gay Bar Association, and the Iranian-American Bar Association; and
- Practice Area, such as the Los Angeles Intellectual Property Law Association, Labor & Employment Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, and the Individual Rights Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association.
Most Bar Associations will have mixers and continuing legal education events throughout the year, and this is a great way for a law student to obtain face time with lawyers where there may be a common interest. Southwestern holds an Annual Bar Association Fair every February where many local Bar Associations visit campus and talk to students about the benefits of joining. However, students don’t have to wait until February to join. Membership can take place any time throughout the year, and students are encouraged to use the list of Bar Associations (hyper link to handout regarding Bar Associations) maintained by the Career Services Office.