The Tennessee Bar Association welcomes law student involvement and has a number of special programs to help law students enhance their education and network with established attorneys. See details on each program and membership details for law students.
Programs for Law Students
The Diversity Leadership Institute is a six-month leadership and diversity program for law students designed to:
* Develop the skills necessary to succeed as a law student and attorney;
• Empower law students to make greater contributions to the legal community;
• Match students to mentors in a diverse variety of practice areas; and
• Build relationships among students of diverse backgrounds
Second-, third- and fourth-year students studying at Tennessee law schools are eligible to apply. Applications are available in the fall for the program, which begins each January.
The TBA Environmental Law Section sponsors the annual Jon E. Hastings Memorial Award writing competition to recognize the best legal writing by a Tennessee law student on a topic of state or federal environmental law. The juried competition is held in memory of Jon Hastings, one of the section’s founding members, and has a cash prize pool of $1,200. The winning article also will be published in an upcoming edition of the TBA Environmental Law Section's newsletter. Students must be enrolled in a Tennessee law school during the current academic year to be eligible. Contact TBA staff member Jarod Word for more information.
Tennessee law students have a unique opportunity to volunteer at the State High School Mock Trial Competition each March as bailiffs. The competition spans two days (Friday and Saturday) and includes four trial rounds. For each round, bailiffs are needed in each courtroom. This is a great opportunity to meet practicing lawyers, who score the trial rounds, and sitting judges in the state, who preside over the rounds.
The TBA’s Public Education Committee and Access to Justice Committee are very active and provide a range of opportunities for law students to get involved in committee work, special projects and community events. Learn more by contacting TBA staff member Liz Todaro.
If you think you may “hang out your own shingle” after graduating from law school, you are in good company! Now, more than ever, Tennessee attorneys – especially new lawyers – are deciding to set up their own firms. To help you anticipate some of the key issues you will face, the TBA has developed the Solo in a Box Toolkit. The toolkit offers solo and small firm attorneys – and those thinking about taking the plunge – a user-friendly way to access useful information in one place. The toolkit includes information on choosing a business entity, choosing office space, choosing professional services, understanding insurance needs, handling finances and budgeting, hiring administrative staff, marketing your services and finding mentors.
Law Student Membership Package
The TBA has a special membership package that makes joining affordable and beneficial for law students. For just $50 a year, law students have full access to TBA programs and resources, including:
• free membership in the Young Lawyers Division
• free subscription to the YLD's monthly electronic newsletter, which contains information about activities and events for young lawyers and law students in the state
• free access to all continuing legal education seminars (a savings of several hundred dollars)
• free membership in a TBA specialized section (a savings of up to $30)
• free access to TBA Joblink, an online career site where you can post your resume or search for jobs
• free access to networking events
• free access to discounts with companies such as Office Depot, UPS and Geico