Professionalism in Practice: Toward a More Inclusive Profession

Professionalism in Practice: Toward a More Inclusive Profession is a program targeting law students, young lawyers and judges. It is presented by the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession as two half-day sessions (starting with lunch on the afternoon of Day 1, with a reception at the end of the first day, and concluding with a morning session and lunch on the second day) during which judges and young lawyers teach law students – and law students teach judges and young lawyers – about professionalism in the law, and diversity and inclusion within the profession. The program is ideal for presentation in partnership with bar associations or other organizations that wish to provide meaningful programming for law students, young lawyers and judges and seek to find a way to engage these groups within their organization.

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About the Program

The program is designed to explore the concept of professionalism through the lens of diversity and inclusion. Through keynote speakers, panel presentations, facilitated discussion, and small group projects, the participants have an opportunity to examine their understanding of professionalism and consider the role of diversity and inclusion within that framework. Three key components distinguish the program from anything else in existence:

·         An extremely diverse group of participants;

·         Generational diversity among the participants; and,

·         Intertwining professionalism with diversity and inclusion.

The Institute works with consultant Stella Manabe and her staff to present the program. Ms. Manabe was the creative force behind the Oregon State Bar Association’s renowned “Opportunities for Law in Oregon” program for law students and has special expertise in organizing successful programming targeting law students.

The structure of the program is designed to lead the participants through a process of thinking about their initial understanding of the concept of professionalism and, through the stories, experiences, and perspectives offered by strategically selected speakers and panelists, as well as their fellow participants, to re-examine that understanding when different factors – diversity and inclusion – are brought into play. It brings different generational perspectives to the discussions through the involvement of judges and young lawyers. Through the stature of the keynote speakers, it sends a message, both overt and subliminal that this topic is important to important people in the profession. And, it helps foster collaboration among the participating law schools and collegiality among their student participants.

This program can accommodate up to 75 law students during one presentation.

If your organization is interested in partnering with the Institute to present Professionalism in Practice: Toward a More Inclusive Profession, please contact us at or (312) 628-5885.

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