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Careers > Law Students and Graduates > 1L Diversity Programs


1L Diversity Programs

Each year, we sponsor several opportunities for diverse 1L law students. These fellowship programs reflect our commitment to public service and diversity, and they are also a great way for law students to make significant legal service contributions while gaining substantial legal experience. 

Our current programs are highlighted below.

The Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) 1L Scholars Program is designed to strengthen the legal pipeline by expanding the number of opportunities for diverse first-year law students. It provides 1L students with valuable professional experiences while introducing them to the value of relationships and building networks with LCLD member organizations. 

We will select our LCLD 1L Scholar from the 1Ls we hire for our 2023 Summer Associate Program. In addition to a paid 1L summer position, the selected LCLD Scholar will be afforded the opportunity to participate in the LCLD 1L Scholars Mentor Program and attend the LCLD 1L Scholars Summit with other 1L Scholars from around the United States. To be considered for the LCLD 1L Scholars Program, please apply to one of our open 1L positions on our website and indicate your interest in the LCLD 1L Scholars Program in your cover letter or personal statement.

K&L Gates created the Power of Partnership Program in 2018 to offer outstanding learning experiences for law students while also increasing engagement with our clients. This program offers 1L students who self-identify as diverse the unique opportunity to work for part of the summer in a K&L Gates office as a summer associate and part of the summer in-house with the legal team of a corporate client of the firm. The program has grown in size each year, from one participant in 2018 to 11 participants in 2022. 

In 2022, our Boston, Charleston, Charlotte, Nashville, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Research Triangle Park, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. offices hosted at least one Power of Partnership 1L. We partnered with clients across a variety of industries, including financial services, technology, higher education, pharmaceuticals, and health care.

In addition to a paid 1L summer associate position, our Power of Partnership Program participant will be eligible to receive an academic bonus of up to US$25,000.

Applications will be open on our careers page in late October 2022. We will begin to review applications on a rolling basis after 1 December 2022, and the application period will close on 31 January 2023.

K&L Gates and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law (Pitt Law) have collaborated in the establishment of the K&L Gates Diversity Fellowship. The fellowship provides a full-tuition scholarship to an entering student at Pitt Law for all three years of law school, as well as a paid summer associate position at K&L Gates in the student’s first summer of law school. The K&L Gates Diversity Fellowship, which began with the Fall 2016 entering class, is the first of its kind at Pitt Law; the first such partnership in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania between a law firm and a law school; and one of the very few such partnerships in the entire country. All accepted students at Pitt Law will be invited to apply. Learn more.

Our Seattle office is also a sponsor of the Gregoire Fellows Program, a program through the University of Washington and Seattle University designed to mentor diverse law students throughout their law school career and job search. Each fellow selected in partnership with the university receives a paid summer associate position and a US$20,000 stipend.

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