This summer the WLA Alumni Committee hosted events and programs in three different cities: DC, New York, and Chicago. In NY, Esther Lim (’13) organized a mixer in August which was both cozy and fun. Some current students attended along with HLS alumnae living and working in the city. All of women stayed for the entire event, with some remaining past the end, talking about their idiosyncratic classmates, successes, and hurdles in the law profession, as well as the difference in HLS culture then and now. The attendees expressed that Harvard Law community in New York wants and needs more opportunities to connect. Hopefully WLA can start that movement for a better network and closer community!
In Chicago, Laura Wolf (’13) planned a mixer alongside Stacey Austin (’04), the head organizer of the Harvard Law School Women’s Alliance of Chicago. In late July, a group of about ten HLS alumnae sprinkled with a couple of current students met for a post-work cocktail and appetizers at Las Palmas in Wicker Park. The women enjoyed reminiscing about their times at HLS and talking about where their career paths have led them over the years. Many of the women had hailed from big law firm life back in the day, but had moved on to smaller boutique firms or different career paths entirely.
For current students, it was great to see what had influenced their decisions in those moves. It was also wonderful getting to hear how much (and how little) HLS has changed over the years.
The WLA is excited for summer mixers, like the ones in NY and Chicago, to become an annual tradition, where current students can meet alumnae to learn more about the roots of the school, and also to hear about the experiences HLS women have faced in the working world. It has definitely helped all of us realize that there will always be a contingency of HLS women around to support each other as we progress in our careers and lives.
Misty Wright (’13) spent her summer in DC, where she formed the DC Mentorship Program for HLS Women. With the help of the HLSA Alumnae Network of DC, over 30 HLS students summering in DC were paired with amazing women mentors – partners at law firms, clerks on the Supreme Court, public interest leaders, you name it – based on academic, career, and personal interests. We are so excited by the success of the program’s inaugural summer and can’t wait to build upon this foundation for next year’s program!
– Laura Wolf, Esther Lim, and Misty Wright, Alumni Outreach Committee Chairs