Do you think that you can be a good mentor? Do you need a good mentor? If yes, we hope that you will register to participate in The Iowa State Bar Association’s Young Lawyer Mentoring Program.
The ISBA Young Lawyers Division officially launched the ISBA Young Lawyer Mentoring Program in late 2014 with the goals that the program would build collegiality, enhance professionalism, grow relationships, and better the legal profession. The program was developed not as a strict plan participants must follow, but instead, as a series of guided discussions that are customizable to the needs of the mentee and the strengths and experiences of the mentor.
To be successful, the Young Lawyer Mentoring Program needs mentors and mentees. We anticipate no shortage of mentee applications, thus we need to ensure that we have a sufficient supply of mentors to meet increasing demand as this program continues to grow.
Participants are required to dedicate at least six hours per year to the program, with the hope that the meetings will take place in person, and three-to-four times a year. Each mentor and mentee will be provided a packet of information which includes a list of suggested topics, ranging from office management to time management and interaction with clients to interactions with judges, as well as ethics, diversity, communications, and mental health, just to name a few. The program will last one year, beginning and ending each year in conjunction with the ISBA's Annual Meeting. While the formal program itself lasts only a year, it is our hope that the relationships themselves will last long beyond the "formal" mentoring period.
WHO CAN BE A MENTOR?
To be a mentor, you must be a member of the ISBA and have been licensed to practice in Iowa for more than five years. In addition, malpractice insurance must be carried (if required by your type of employment/practice). You must also have a clean disciplinary record. The YLD Mentoring Committee anticipates a high number of mentee
applications, and are asking those who are eligible to serve as a mentor to
consider joining the program.
WHO CAN BE A MENTEE?
ISBA members who have been licensed for fewer than five years in the state of Iowa are eligible to be a mentee.
Both mentors and mentees will be required to fill out an application (see buttons at top of page). The application requests a variety of information that will be used to help the committee match mentors and mentees. Mentors and mentees will be required to certify that they meet the minimum requirements, and to abide by the basic guidelines of the program. Each application will also have a section for confidential information, information that will not be provided to anyone outside of the committee. This section can be used to provide information that may be more private, but may be helpful in making successful matches as well. You can request a specific mentor or mentee, but matches within a firm or organization will not be approved. Mentors and mentees can identify particular areas or preferences in a match, and while attempts will be made to meet these preferences, there is no guarantee those preferences will be strictly followed. The committee’s goal will be to make the best match possible for each mentee and mentor relationship.
This Young Lawyer Mentoring Program creates opportunities for experienced lawyers to guide new lawyers in developing the practical skills and judgment to practice in a highly competent manner and to instill the ethical and professional values that characterize excellent lawyers. For the ISBA Young Lawyer Mentoring Program to be a success, the program needs the support and participation from Iowa lawyers like you.
For questions regarding the mentoring program, contact the YLD Mentoring Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.