The AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee Minority Outreach Program Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Minority Outreach Program?

The AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee (LCC)–a network of approximately 1,900 union-side attorneys representing unions affiliated with the AFL-CIO—created the LCC Minority Outreach Program (MOP) to encourage la w students of color to apply for summer clerkship opportunities at LCC law firms and legal departments. The outreach program seeks to introduce minority law students to the practice of law in the labor movement and to encourage them to join the ranks of union-side attorneys in the ongoing battle for social and economic justice. To enhance their summer experience, students participate in the LCC MOP Law Clerk Networking Conference, which features workshops and presentations on labor law practice, union organizing and representation, politics and legislation. The conference is two days and usually held on the second weekend in June at the AFL-CIO Headquarters in Washington, DC.

2. What constitutes minority for purposes of the MOP?

The Minority Outreach Program focuses on the recruitment of law students of color. We do not define who is a law student of color; if you identify yourself as a person of color, you are eligible to participate.

3. How do I apply?

The Minority Outreach Program is not its own separate hiring program. Thus, you do not “apply” to the MOP. If you are interested in participating, apply directly to the employer. The website http://unionlawyers.aflcio.org lists the employers. To apply, send a resume and cover letter detailing your interest in labor law a nd public interest work to the employer, in addition to any other materials requested by the employer. Availability of positions and hiring varies by firm and legal department and hiring decisions are the sole discretion of the law firm or legal department.

4. If I am hired, does that mean I automatically get t o attend the conference?

The individual law firm or legal department decides whether it is able to send its law clerk to the conference. Many but not all MOP students a re able to attend. Students who clerked at firms and legal departments during the fall and spring semesters may be able to participate in the MOP. Send us your information at mop@aflcio.org .

5. Who pays my expenses to the conference?

Your employer pays your transportation costs to the conference. During your time in Washington, DC the LCC will cover your meals, lodging and transportation costs. Students are expected to attend the entire two day conference.

6. What if I am working at an LCC firm that is unable to send me to the conference?

While there is no substitute for the networking and learning opportunities provided during the conference, if your LCC employer is unable to s end you to the conference, you can still participate in the MOP. Simply contact us at mop@aflcio.org , with your name and employer and tell us you’d like to participate in t he program. You will then receive the conference materials and be assigned a mentor.

7. What happens during the conference?

The conference provides law clerks with an informative overview of the major challenges and opportunities facing today’s labor movement. Un ion staff, labor law practitioners and members of the LCC Minority Caucus lead discussions on various topics. The program often includes the following panels: Re searching Labor Law, Organizing and the Law, Union-Side Labor Practice: Contract Enforcement, Finding a Job as Union-Side Labor Lawyer, NLRB Practice and Immigration. Past conference agendas can be found at http://unionlawyers.aflcio.org .

8. Is the conference all there is to the program?

No. While the conference is the hallmark of the MOP , the program continues throughout the year. Upon completion of the MOP Law Clerk Networking Conference, each attendee is matched with a mentor, an LCC lawyer who provide s guidance and support during and after the students’ clerkships. In addition, students continuously receive information on job opportunities, resume and cover letter review and updates on student-centered union activities. MOP participants are also eligible to have their resumes placed in the LCC resume bank for review for job openings at firms an d union legal departments.

9. What law schools have been represented in the MOP? Do you recruit only from certain schools?

No. However, since each employer does its own hiring, some law firms or legal departments may target schools in a certain geographic area. Check out http://unionlawyers.aflcio.org for a list of some of the represented law schools.

10. What opportunities are there with the AFL-CIO legal department?

The AFL-CIO is a MOP employer. We hire for spring, summer and fall law clerks. In addition, we hire a law fellow for a one year term from the pool of recent law school graduates. We rarely hire recent law graduates for permanent positions.

11. Can attorneys apply to the program?

No. The MOP is just for current law students, including those clerking during the summer following the end of the third year.

12. Where can I get additional information?

Please visit http://unionlawyers.aflcio.org or email us at mop@aflcio.org .