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Winston & Strawn LLP

Winston’s Summer Associate Program seeks well-rounded, motivated, imaginative law students who are team players and will work hard for our clients. Our 10-week program runs from mid-May to late July and provides meaningful opportunities to explore a wide range of practice areas, valuable hands-on training programs, and exceptional community service and social events.

The 83 members of our most recent summer associate class have returned to law school with the new skills, experiences, and relationships they gained at Winston. This 2018 Summer Program Yearbook provides an inside view of Winston’s Summer Associate Program.

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Winston & Strawn offers a first-rate talent platform to help law students and entry-level attorneys begin their careers with confidence. Our global and holistic approach celebrates our history and culture, supports learning and innovation, and leverages diversity and inclusion.

After bringing on nationally recognized talent strategy expert Sue Manch in May 2017, the firm elevated its game in September 2017 by adding sought-after career coach Diane Costigan, diversity and inclusion “dean” Sylvia James, and professional trainer Julia Mercier to round out the talent team. The American Lawyer highlighted their plans to develop a comprehensive talent strategy and structure for the firm’s attorneys and professional staff.

These efforts earned Winston a spot on the shortlist for Euromoney Legal Media Group’s 2018 “Best International Firm for Talent Management”  award.

Key components of our talent platform

Winston University LogoThe Winston University Development System promotes peak performance at every stage by delivering training at optimal career points. Winston University is a world-class series of legal and professional skills training programs led by Winston partners, associates, firm leadership, and industry experts.

Their first week at the firm, entry-level attorneys from around the globe come together in Chicago for Winston University Jumpstart Orientation. This program includes a mix of professional and legal skills sessions designed to help our newest members embark on their first year with confidence.

The talent team also matches new junior associates with mentors, which helps them create connections with experienced attorneys to facilitate access to information, advice, and guidance as they chart their career path at the firm.

Winston’s culture of coaching emphasizes strategic thinking about career and performance, access to dialog for creative problem-solving, learning tips/tools/best practices, “in the moment” feedback, and accountability for goal attainment.

Career Coaching: focuses on career paths

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    • Overall career plan/strategy
    • Satisfaction and engagement
    • Networking; leveraging mentors

Professional Development: blends technical and professional skills development

Peak Performance: focuses on overall job execution and personal effectiveness

    • Wellness; stress/energy management
    • Social and emotional intelligence

View this brief video in which Director of Coaching Diane Costigan discusses coaching and the firm’s holistic approach to training.

Winston values diversity and inclusion and the importance of bringing varied perspectives, experiences, and talents to the firm. Our commitment to recruiting and retaining diverse attorneys includes:

  • Awarding diversity scholarships to 44 minority law students in the last 14 years.
  • Winston Diversity LogoSelecting seven 1L LCLD Scholars for our 2018 summer program.
  • Recruiting from numerous diversity focused career fairs each year.
  • Sponsoring diverse students’ participation in the Law Preview prep course.
  • Supporting firmwide affinity groups for Black, Latina/o, Asian, LGBTQ, and women attorneys.

We achieved Mansfield Certified Plus Status for 2018, which recognizes law firms that have affirmatively considered women and attorneys of color for leadership and governance roles, equity partner promotions, and lateral positions.

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Corporate Social Responsibility – encompassing respect for people, wise use of profits, and care for our planet – governs many aspects of Winston’s strategic vision for our firm. In 2017, we implemented a formal CSR program – Winston for Good – that aligns with our values and heritage and fosters a culture that intentionally makes an impact.

Winston for Good encompasses the following programs, many of which have been in place for years:

  • Corporate giving to support the community endeavors of our clients since our founding in 1853
  • Charitable giving through the Winston & Strawn Foundation, established in 1990
  • Pro bono legal services, a formal policy for which was adopted in 1991
  • Diversity & Inclusion initiatives, including the Winston Diversity Scholarship created in 2004
  • Winston Initiative for Sustainable Environment (WISE), started in 2009
  • Professional staff volunteer opportunities through Volunteer @ Winston, launched in 2012
  • Employee Engagement Initiative, formalized in 2015

Our summer associates and practicing attorneys have the opportunity to participate in Winston’s substantial Pro Bono activities, serving a critical need in the community while gaining valuable legal experience.  

Many of our incoming associates volunteer through Winston’s Pro Bono Fellowship program, and the first 100 hours of pro bono work are credited toward associates’ annual billable-hours target.

Winston Wellness LogoPeople are the heartbeat of Winston, and we have continually worked to create a culture of wellness at the firm. For 2018, we launched a global Year of the Heart Winston Wellness initiative to provide both education and motivation to help firm members make healthy choices and reduce their risk factors for heart disease.

Year of the Heart kicked off with a global celebration of the American Heart Association’s “Go Red for Women” day and the British Heart Foundation’s “Heart Month,” and featured a cross-office steps challenge, complimentary health screenings, and a meditation workshop.

All of our people—whether they practice at our firm for their entire careers or go on to other distinguished careers—are part of the Winston family. The firm offers a range of transition support services for attorneys who decide to pursue an in-house role, government position, clerkship, or other alternate career path.

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Winston’s Alumni Program offers annual social events in many offices, professional development and community service opportunities, and other resources to help former colleagues stay connected to the firm.

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