Between 21% and 36% of practicing attorneys exhibit drinking behaviors that could be considered hazardous, harmful, or possibly alcohol dependent. 28% of licensed and employed attorneys are struggling with either mild, moderate, or severe depression, and 19% are battling with clinically significant levels of anxiety. How prevalent are mental health and substance misuse issues in the profession and what can young lawyers do to help reduce these numbers?
In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, host Fabiani Duarte speaks with Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation Legal Professionals Program Director Patrick Krill about the prevalence of substance misuse and other mental health concerns within the occupation. Patrick explains his motivation for encouraging the creation of this study, mainly a lack of relevant drug use and mental health data, and explores possible reasons as to why so little research of this kind has been done on attorneys. He also explains the tools he used, like the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and Depression Anxiety Stress Scales (Dass 21), to measure alcohol consumption and mental health concerns among the pool of 15,000 attorneys surveyed. The conversation then shifts to an analysis of the survey results which show that young attorneys within their first 10 years of practice have the highest rates of mental health issues and problematic drinking. Patrick expounds upon these statistics by revealing that 90% of the individuals surveyed identified alcohol as their drug of choice. He wraps up the interview with some suggestions on how drinking culture can be decoupled from the legal profession and provides tips for law students on identifying if they struggle with mental illness and substance misuse and resources for those seeking help.
Patrick Krill is director of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation Legal Professionals Program and a licensed attorney, board certified alcohol and drug counselor and graduate-level instructor in addiction counseling.
Marcia Clark is best known for being the lead prosecutor for theO.J. Simpson murder trial. The former Heisman Trophy Winner wasaccused and found not guilty of the June 1994 death of Nicole BrownSimpson and waiter Ronald Lyle Goldman in a trial that captivatedthe country. Thrust back into the spotlight by "The People vs. O.J.Simpson" miniseries, a new generation is now fascinated by Clark,the discrimination she faced during the trial, and the writingcareer that followed.
In this episode of the ABA Law StudentPodcast, hosts Fabiani Duarte andSandy Gallant-Jones sit down with Marcia Clark,most notably known for serving as the prosecutor for the trial ofO.J. Simpson, to discuss her new novel “Blood Defense.” Marciaprovides deeper insight into the motivation behind the creation of,and the personality differences between, her long running characterRachel Knight and her new protagonist, Samantha Brinkman. She alsospeaks briefly about her experience writing through theprosecutorial lens and the catalyst behind her recent shift towardswriting from the perspective of the defense. The focus of thediscussion then pivots toward an analysis of her experiences duringthe O.J. Simpson case and her prosecutorial experience. Marciareflects on the adversity she faced during the trial as shebalanced raising a family, fighting a custody battle, and thesexism she experienced in the courtroom and the office. She closesthe interview with advice on helpful skills that law students candevelop while in school, such as discipline and persistence, andhow those experiences can be applied to their work in theprofession.
20% of lawyers suffer from depression, more than double that of the general population. Beyond that, 60,000 law students suffer from depression by the end of their second year. What resources are available for lawyers who find themselves battling the rigors of the profession and the struggles of depression?
In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke sit down with trial lawyer and founder of the website “Lawyers with Depression” Daniel Lukasik to discuss depression in the legal profession. Daniel opens the show by sharing some of his personal experiences battling depression, his path to treatment, and how that led to the creation of his website. He then takes a moment to analyze the number of law students and lawyers who suffer from depression and why those statistics are much higher than the average population. During this investigation Daniel also shares signs that law students can look for to determine if they are suffering from depression and some of the ways that depression might manifest itself in one’s life. The group then shifts focus to Daniel’s documentary “A Terrible Melancholy: Depression in the Legal Profession” and discuss resources supporters and those battling depression can seek to aid in treatment.
Daniel Lukasik is a trial lawyer with Maxwell Murphy LLP and the founder of the website “Lawyers with Depression.” He was also the executive producer for the documentary “A Terrible Melancholy: Depression in the Legal Profession.” Daniel graduated Magna Cum Laude from Buffalo State College and received his Juris Doctor from State University of New York at Buffalo Law School.
Many law students, upon graduating, find it very difficult to acquire employment in the legal profession straight out of school. Numerous law firms are unwilling to hire recent grads that have no previous work experience listed on their resumes. What should a recent graduate do to help increase their chances of finding a firm that is the right fit for them while providing the work experience necessary to land your first job?
In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke sit down with Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section Chair-Elect John Cartafalsa to discuss the summer associates program. John opens the episode with a little explanation of his educational history and peers back into his law school days to offer some advice to his younger law student self. He then chats specifically about his firm’s participation in hiring summer associates and what he looks for in a candidate, while Fabiani and Madison both inquire about the best tactics for law students to land these positions. The conversations wraps with some focused advice directed towards students seeking to find a law firm that is the perfect fit for them.
John Cartafalsa is the chair-elect of the Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section for the American Bar Association. John is a managing attorney at Zurich Staff Legal Services and received his bachelor of science degree from American University School of International Service. He received his Juris Doctor from Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center.
The ABA Law Student Division serves to not only provide options for students to better engage with their peers but also to provide valuable leadership and career development opportunities. Individuals who wish to promote positive change within the profession will often seek to aid their peers by serving on the Law Student Division Board of Governors. In this ABA Law Student Podcast hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke sit down with members of the ABA Law Student Division to chat about their past year in review. The conversation opens with each board member explaining a bit about their law school background, the circuit they represent, and some of the changes their circuit went through over the year. The group then takes some time to discuss their favorite achievement that their respective law school was able to accomplish this year. The conversation wraps up with each governor providing tips and advice for the new board members that will be filling their positions once they leave.
Mathew C. Mecoli, Third Circuit
Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law
Akemini Ruby Isang, Fourth Circuit:
University of South Carolina School of Law
Marcus Sandifer, Fifth Circuit
Emory University School of Law
Krystal Yalldo, Sixth Circuit
Western Michigan University
Thomas M. Cooley Law School
Mayra Salinas-Menjivar, Fourteenth Circuit
University of Nevada Las Vegas,
William S. Boyd School of Law
Kirk W. Kabala, Fifteenth Circuit
Arizona Summit Law School
Andrew Rhoden, M.S.
American University, Washington College of Law
Delegate to the ABA House of Delegates
The Law Student Division of the ABA provides many young lawyers with invaluable resources, benefits, and leadership opportunities. However, many students who are interested in pursuing a deeper level of engagement in the ABA aren’t sure how to continue their involvement as they enter the legal market. In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, host Fabiani Duarte chats with guest Bryan Rogers about the Young Lawyers Division and the Emerging Leaders Program that is helping law graduates seek significant leadership roles within the ABA.
Bryan Rogers is an associate attorney with the law firm Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP. He also served as the Law Student Division representative to the ABA Board of Governors-Elect and as a 7th Circuit Governor. Bryan then moved on to be the Law Student Division representative member of the ABA Board of Governors. He also was a member of the inaugural class of the ABA Young Lawyers Division Emerging Leaders program. Bryan graduated from Valparaiso University School of Law (J.D., magna cum laude, 2013) and was the recipient of the ABA Law Student Division’s Golden Key Award.
Have you ever wondered how many lawyers continue to practice after acquiring their Juris Doctor Degree? Perhaps you’ve pondered how your legal knowledge can be applied to different types of public work or social activism. In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, host Fabiani Duarte takes an in-depth look at the American Bar Foundation research attempting to answer these questions with its director, Ajay K. Mehrotra.
Ajay K. Mehrotra is the executive director of the American Bar Foundation. He also is an adjunct professor of history at Indiana University and served as the school’s associate dean for research. Ajay is the author of “Making the Modern American Fiscal State: Law, Politics and the Rise of Progressive Taxation, 1877-1929” (Cambridge University Press, 2013).
One of the most demanding endeavors that any recent law grad will face is studying for and passing the bar exam. However, upon entering the legal market, many graduates aren’t aware of the challenges associated with transferring their bar exam scores between jurisdictions. In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, host Fabiani Duarte and guest Christopher Jennison, the Board of Governors representative to the Law Student Division, discuss their year-long fight to provide law students with more bar exam portability by encouraging the ABA House of Delegates to adopt Resolution 109.
Christopher Jennison is the Board of Governors representative to the Law Student Division and sits on the ABA Board of Governors. He graduated from Syracuse University in 2012 with dual majors in public relations from Newhouse and policy studies from Maxwell. He also graduated with a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Pennsylvania in 2014. Christopher has been the law student liaison to the Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education and was also the recipient of the Law Student Division’s Gold Key Award.
As the law becomes ever more complex and the legal market continues to shift and grow, entering the workforce can be incredibly intimidating to a current student or recent grad. Sifting through the options and finding the career path that is right for you can sometimes feel daunting for even the most well-prepared of students. In this installment of the ABA Law Student Podcast David Lat, founder and managing editor of Above the Law, joins hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke to discuss his path to success and provide tips that can help students shape their burgeoning careers.
David Lat is the founder and managing editor of Above the Law, a blog established in 2006 that provides news and commentary on the U.S. legal industry. Prior to this, he started Underneath Their Robes, a blog focused on the federal judiciary with pop culture magazine sensibilities. Before his career as a blogger, David attended Harvard College and Yale Law School. After school, he worked as a law clerk for Judge Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, a litigation associate at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York, and a federal prosecutor in Newark, New Jersey. in 2014 David published his first book, Supreme Ambitions: A Novel, to outstanding acclaim.
If you are one of the 40 million Americans who funded their education with student loan debt, you may be asking yourself now what? The bad news: you probably can’t get out of it with bankruptcy. The good news: with over 1.3 trillion dollars locked up in American educational loans, the country has a vested interest to pave the way for repayment. So what does that mean for you? Tune in to find out.
On this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke talk with Credible Labs founder and Slate contributor Stephen J. Dash. Together, they discuss first steps in the post-borrowing world of student loan debt.
Step One: Understand Your Situation
This means you should know how much you owe and to whom. In addition, you should budget out your total earnings and total expenses.
Step Two: Make a Plan
By investigating your options for repayment, you will be able to make an informed choice. Primary options like consolidation, pay-as-you-earn, and refinancing all have pros and cons. Understanding the benefits and pitfalls of each repayment program will empower you to make the right choice for your situation.
Step Three: Stick to the Plan
Some repayment plans allow you to make future changes. Once you decide on a repayment plan, do your best to stick with it. If your financial situation changes, communicate with your servicer to see what, if any, options are available.
Student Loan Issues Discussed In This Episode:
With lower starting salaries and higher tuition rates, today’s law students face tough decisions when it comes to financing their education. In addition to school rank, employment rates, and average starting salaries, future lawyers need to be aware of loan terminology and how it affects their future ability to pay. But how much do you have to know to make an informed decision? Unfortunately, there is a lot to consider, including your future area of law, fixed vs. variable interest rates, short term loans vs. long term loans, tax implications, federal requirements, and much more. The good news is, there are organizations and people who can help.
In this episode of ABA Law Student Podcast, hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke deep dive the treacherous waters of student loan debt with CommonBond CEO and Co-Founder David Klein. Together, they review many factors students should consider before signing one of the biggest contracts of their lives. In addition, they present a case study that may alarm some prospective borrowers.
David Klein is CEO and co-founder of CommonBond, a lending platform that focuses on lowering the cost of student loans for borrowers and provides financial returns to investors. Prior to CommonBond, David worked in consumer finance at American Express as director of strategic planning and business development, where he led a $250M annual business. David started his professional career as a consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he advised clients in the financial services industry.
If you are in or plan to go into public service, you may have heard about public service loan forgiveness (PSLF for short). This economic incentive was intended to attract and keep employees in public sector positions such as district attorney or public defender by offering student loan forgiveness following a minimum period of service and on-time payments towards the borrower’s debt. The cost of this benefit is borne by the taxpayer and is aimed at making public work more attractive despite the relative low pay.
In recent times, the PSLF program has fallen under the scrutiny of budget cuts following the recession as Americans slog through the recovery period. Some critics believe that student loan borrowers in the public sector should pay for their own education especially with the relative job security and retirement benefits as compared to those in the private sector. Other critics state that not all public service positions should receive loan forgiveness and call for budgetary caps. But what would capping or eliminating public service loan forgiveness mean for our communities?
In this extended two segment episode of ABA Law Student Podcast, hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke interview Bryan Tyson, the executive director of the Georgia Public Defender Council and Jonathan Rapping, co-founder of Gideon’s Promise. In segment one, we hear from Bryan about the debt to income gap, his organization’s survey of public defenders about PSLF, and the increased importance of public defenders outside the practice of law. In segment two, we hear from Jonathan about student debt’s barrier to public service, the lifelong commitment of student loans, and concerns about poor people not getting justice in the event of PSLF cuts or caps.
ABA Law Student Podcast hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke sit down with Chris Jennison, the ABA Law Student Division’s representative to the ABA Board of Governors, to discuss the governing role of the ABA Board of Governors and how its actions affect the lives of law students and recent grads.
Since 2009, the Law Student Division has been able to vote on the Board of Governors and they are actively using that power to improve the plight of fellow students. Currently they are advocating for Interpretation 305-2 which would allow ABA accredited schools to let students receive both pay and credit for their externships. In addition, they are supporting the spread of the Uniform Bar Exam, which allows one exam score to be applied to multiple state bars in the states that participate. The net effect will make it cheaper and easier to get admitted to the practice of law in multiple states.
As for future initiatives, Chris discusses the Limited Licence Legal Technician program in Washington and increased student access to the American Bar Association’s various sections, divisions, and forums. Tune in to hear what’s being done about mounting student debt and the status of public service loan forgiveness.
On this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, Senator Lindsey Graham joins hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke. Together, they discuss getting through law school, being an advocate, and public service loan forgiveness. Tune in to hear about his early career and the importance of having your character tested in law school.
Surviving law school is difficult enough, but law students also need to be thinking about how to best prepare themselves for the future. In this episode of the ABA Law Student Podcast, Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke talk with Paulette Brown, current president of the American Bar Association, about her path through law school, advice she has for current law students, and legal initiatives she thinks might really interest young lawyers. Tune in to hear what qualities Ms. Brown would look for when hiring a lawyer who had just passed the bar.
Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke interview leaders and representatives from a few of the 64 ABA sections, divisions, and forums. In this round robin format, each guest makes a two minute pitch explaining how law students can benefit from potential networking, education, and career path opportunities in the following:
Young Lawyers Division
Tort and Insurance Practice Section
Law Practice Division
Antitrust Law Section
Criminal Justice Section
Armed Forces Law Committee
Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice Section
Animal Law Committee
Richard Conviser joins hosts Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke for a discussion about the history of BARBRI, why it was founded, and how it continues to help law students pass the most important exam of their career.
In this extended-play first episode of ABA Law Student Podcast, we start with an interview of our two hosts (Fabiani Duarte and Madison Burke) before cutting to their first episode recorded at the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago. While there, they discuss the ABA Law Student Division, its free membership, and how it’s helping law students around the country. Tune in to hear about their ambitions to provide paid externship credits, public service loan forgiveness, and debt counseling for those who need to take out student loans.