Detroit-born Dykema has blossomed further afield in recent years but hasn't forgotten its roots.
JUST to keep us all on our toes, when last year's Chambers Associate went to press in spring 2015, Dykema announced a combination with the Texas firm Cox Smith, which completed later that year. We managed to halt the printing presses just in time to add this key bit of late news, and this year chairman and CEO Peter Kellett is proud to tell us the move fulfills “one of our strategic objectives.” Phew! Revenue for 2015 shot up by over 25%. Over the past ten years the firm's expansion has been steady and considered, gradually building up a roster of 15 offices across Michigan, where Dykema originated, Illinois and Texas, as well as bases in Minneapolis, DC and California. "Last year I sensed we were getting close to a major opportunity," adds Peter Kellett, "and we were. A year from now I hope to be talking to you about another similar move.” Watch this space.
Chambers USA recognizes Dykema's increasingly national strengths, with rankings in Texas and Illinois as well as Michigan. Ranked practices include M&A, litigation, employment, real estate, immigration, antitrust, restructuring and IP. At the time of our calls, five juniors in our interview pool were based in Detroit, three in Chicago, three in Bloomfield Hills, and one in Ann Arbor. Of these, seven were some kind of litigator, three were in real estate, and the others were in corporate finance, or taxation & estates.
Reputation – while “excellent” – wasn't the sole source of attraction to the firm for our interviewees: most expressed that the “dedicated mentoring” during the summer, or “the good feeling during interviews, particularly when compared to the angry and stuffy attitudes of interviewers at the giant firms,” sealed the deal. Some were drawn to Dykema's positioning as “technically midsize with the work/life balance to match, but with clients just as sophisticated as its BigLaw peers.”
“They've really challenged me.”
When new summer associates begin their ten-week experience (six in Texas), they're “usually not assigned to a specific group but rather encouraged to rotate, initially using the free-market system.” A couple of sources in litigation expressed their passion for the practice area before summering, and were able to take on “mostly litigation work and some research” rather than experiencing the transactional side. At the end, future associates select their three top choices and all participants were pleased to be assigned to their preferred group. Once their associate life begins, juniors again “go out and get work,” a system experienced differently by different associates. A litigator offered this constructive criticism: “While it gives you more control it can be unnerving and frustrating; we need an online workflow system.” On the other hand, colleagues commented that “they do a good job of communicating and making sure associates have a good balance of work.”
Real estaters were happy with the spread of work and responsibility levels. “I'm getting a little more responsibility with each new matter,” one reflected. “At first, it was just whatever work needed doing. Now it's more focused.” Sources agreed that “there's always due diligence, but as you go along you start to draft documents too, take on research, or coordinate a closing by preparing the relevant documents.” An interviewee spoke enthusiastically about “being thrown into all the different strands of the practice, from amending leases, to lending transactions, to a buy/sell agreement. They've really challenged me.” Client contact came in the form of “sitting in on conference calls.”
“Once in a while I'm given too much responsibility.”
Litigators – assigned to subgroups such as class actions and product liability, commercial, business, or financial services – reckoned that “the way we staff cases, in small teams of one partner and two associates, allows you to contribute quickly.” One recalled “spending the first five months doing mostly research – there's a lot of that – and doc review, but after that I had my own cases and was working directly under a partner, drafting, coordinating discovery and interacting with clients.” While others didn't graduate into more substantive work quite as quickly as that, they confirmed that “from second year onward I've been involved in the strategy and sit on case meetings, as well as working on a few small cases alone. I've taken two depositions and I go to court a lot. My friends at other firms are doing very basic stuff that's hardly even legal. Once in a while I'm given too much responsibility, but I always have partners I can talk to about it.”
Training & Development
While all newbies attend an orientation and there are practice group presentations on current issues, most interviewees found that "we don't have a formal training process. It's learn-by-experience. Every partner has a different teaching style and works differently. It's not consistent but I've learnt a lot." We heard this can be "frustrating," depending on who you're working with and how busy they are: “Sometimes it's hard to track people down and get a sense of what I should be doing. More partner involvement would be good because not getting enough feedback can be frustrating.” On the other hand, "people are willing to talk to you about things: I’ve been able to go to my practice group leaders about anything." Others confirmed they would cherish more consistency and concluded they “wouldn't rave about training; sometimes we just have to learn by doing.”
Nevertheless, each associate is assigned a formal partner mentor. "I worked a lot for a particular attorney during summer and still have dinner with her and her husband.” Like anywhere, some mentors prove more committed than others, leading one mentee to opine that "they need to get someone who wants to mentor or scrap the program." They also remembered “having associate mentors during summer: they should carry that on, it's great!” There's an annual formal "individual sit-down meeting to discuss performance and any concerns.”
Hours & Compensation
“Yes, we do have time for a private life.”
From the first year onward, hitting the hours target of 1,950 means eligibility for a “merit-based” bonus. Juniors confessed to being slightly unsure “what happens if you don't hit the target,” and suspected that “occasionally everyone gets the bonus irrespective of billables.” The 1,950 was a source of stress for some, but not all. “Perhaps there's not an over-abundance of legal work,” one offered, “but it can be really hard.” Others were more optimistic and asserted that “considering how accepting the firm is of pro bono, you can make it.”
“Yes, we do have time for a private life,” juniors told us. Starting the day “at eightish and leaving by six or seven” was standard, and while some did work regularly on weekends, most did not. Working from home when necessary “is always an option.” One laughed and said: “Partners tease me, saying I should go out more while I'm young.”
“My most substantive experience – such as depositions – has been in pro bono."
“Pro bono is encouraged and it satisfies my need to help the community,” a representative associate declared. “We get a steady stream of emails and I've dealt with immigration issues, small business matters where I've worked directly with the client," and we even heard about an international child kidnapping case. Some cases "lead to a hearing which I'll lead.” Another explained that “my most substantive experience – such as depositions – has been in pro bono. I've worked on important prisoners' rights cases, racking up 300 hours, and it all counts toward my billable target. There's no problem with that.” Forty a year are compulsory, even for transactional lawyers, who admitted “finding it much harder because our schedule is a lot more volatile.” A real estate attorney took it further: “I don't partake because I don't see a benefit in my practice.”
Pro bono hours
“They're certainly making an effort, particularly at associate level,” was the consensus. “At partner level, it's not great.” Still, while admitting that “of course, like all firms it could always do a better job overall,” sources felt “really proud” of Dykema's diversity effort in recruitment. They reckoned that supporting initiatives such as the Wolverine Bar Association demonstrates the firm's “focus on creating a more diverse law firm.” One nonwhite female associate recalled “looking around me during the summer and thinking it was incredibly diverse. You can add that as one of the assets that drew me to Dykema.” Overall, Chicago attorneys felt the results of the diversity efforts more strongly than those in other offices.
A proud Detroit deal-doer explained that “because ours is the head office, it's got a more traditional feel. Think less glass and more wood paneling. We wear business casual whereas some of the other offices are more laid back in that respect. Still, it's open and you often see people walking around, strategizing. I know we're looking to make officewide lunches a more regular occurrence, and a nicer coffee machine would be great! It's currently not quite doing the trick.”
"A nicer coffee machine would be great!"
Chicago case-crackers had no beef with the coffee beans, but they didn't beat around the bush when it came to the office artwork: “It's awful! It's a running joke. They're abstract and they look really old, as in dingy.” Other than that, “everyone gets their own office and you can decorate it however you want. Some have better views than others. Overall the place is spacious and comfortable, and it gets the job done.” One did confess though: “Sometimes I'm jealous because friends at other firms have beautiful offices. It's nice here, but it's not the nicest.” We also heard rumors of “a rooftop terrace in Bloomfield Hills where they host socials once a month.”
Across all offices and practice groups, juniors agreed that “partners are approachable and talk to us like we're colleagues. They're interested in our opinion and in our legal minds.” Generally speaking too, sources spoke of a “friendly and relaxed” atmosphere across the firm, “where everyone from admin staff to equity partners respects one another and work together.” Beyond this, each location and department within it had different vibes. A real estate rookie in Detroit beamed: “I've lucked out. I'm friends with all my co-workers. We don't just talk about work, we ask about each other's families.”
"Four days out of five we all have lunch together.”
A source in Chicago found “breaking into the social atmosphere quite difficult: there's not as much talking or joking among juniors here as I've seen in other groups.” A real estater commented instead that “everyone is so close, at least four days out of five we all have lunch together.” The social scene, interviewees hoped, will soon see a ramp-up “now that, since the combination with Cox Smith, we've introduced an associate committee. They had one so we wanted one firmwide.” For the moment, “social events are mostly during summer; other than that there's not much.”
Strategy & Future
Speaking of Cox Smith: at the time of our research, Dykema associates had so far had limited time to experience the combined firm's new guise. But had they noticed any initial changes? “Other than the associate committee, not really.” The evolution is far from complete, chairman and CEO Peter Kellett reminds us, affirming: “We are not done growing. We will grow in each of the major markets we are in. In the long term, we will have a truly national platform, probably even global. We don't have an imminent plan but I'm always looking out for growth possibilities."
Current juniors may not be feeling the effects of the merger yet, but future candidates surely will: “We've expanded the number of law schools we visit in Texas,” hiring partner Lisa Brown explains, adding that “we went to the University of Wisconsin this year as well, which was new.” Although Dykema accepts direct applications, OCIs are typically its first point of contact with potential new associates. “The first thing we do is study a candidate's resume for participation in journals, experience in leadership positions, and student organizations – activities that suggest they're able to develop client relationships. The quality of law school and a strong academic performance are important, but we don't have a grade cutoff.”
Lisa Brown also reveals that during interviews hopefuls are asked “open-ended questions designed to elicit information about how they've made decisions and solved problems previously. They'll have more time to ask us questions in the callback.” The summer program is available in nine of the 15 offices.
Interview with chairman and CEO Peter Kellett
Chambers Associate: What have been the highlights over the past year?
Peter Kellett: First of all, we accomplished a major combination and that realizes one of our strategic objectives. Secondly, we've been recognized nationally in 20 practice areas where we're among the best law firms. We've received a high index rating for our pro bono work. We've also been engaged in extremely high profile matters in litigation and IP, to mention a few, and right now we are in the middle of some very interesting projects that have generated cross-office opportunities for our lawyers. It helps the firm's overall integration when you can involve multiple offices in a major client assignment.
CA: Which practice areas are growing and which are shrinking?
PK: Cyber security and data privacy is a hot one right now. Corporate M&A is going strong for us in the middle market and private equity transactional space. Our regulatory practices generally seem to be seeing growth and activity, and I would say litigation remains a strength and mainstay across the firm. I'm not actually seeing anything that's shrinking.
CA: What's your plan for the future? Last year you mentioned continuing to expand in California and Texas. And you also spoke about a focus on diversity.
PK: We are not done growing. We will grow in each of the major markets we are in. In the long term, we will have a truly national platform, probably even global. We don't have an imminent plan but I'm always looking out for growth possibilities. We can't always predict it, but last year I sensed we were getting close to a major opportunity and we were. A year from now I hope to be talking to you about another similar move.
CA: How would you describe the culture of Dykema? A few people mentioned choosing it because they wanted the quality of work of bigger firms without that environment – do you think this is what they would have found coming in as associates?
PK: People find we are a collaborative and collegial firm that stresses team work. We don't have a lot of people with sharp elbows; we get along well and like one another, which might be considered a distinguishing characteristic. That isn't to say that many other firms aren't great places to work too, but we're particularly proud of it.
We promote team work by creating client teams that work together to make sure we're delivering the same level of coordinated service to all our major clients across all practice areas. We share knowledge about the client with one another so we're never out of sync; it's a huge asset of our service and helps us promote our shared mission internally. Our hiring and integration process emphasizes these values too.
CA: What has changed culturally since the merger with Cox Smith? I heard there will now be a firm-wide associate committee, something that Cox Smith had and Dykema didn't.
PK: Yes, and that's a great example of integrating best practices and good ideas no matter which side of the combination they come from. Some of our IT deployment has changed to adapt to some of Cox Smith's systems. That has been well received. Right now it's still a bit too early to identify longer range cultural effects.
I want to hasten to say this has been a very seamless and very successful meshing of people who get along well and are working on a number of energizing and exciting joint initiatives. While there are probably more instances of joint initiatives here, this isn't limited to Texas. I see legacy Cox Smith clients that legacy Dykema lawyers are now serving which is promising.
CA: What are some of the reasons associates choose not to stay at Dykema?
PK: People leave for situational reasons in their own life, a number of associates take in house positions with clients – and those are appealing to different people for different reasons. Perhaps it's because there's an opportunity to develop a skillset and be on the ground floor of a business, which can be exciting. We don't lose a lot of associates to competitor law firms.
CA: What's the number one thing you expect of associates and the number one thing you can offer them?
PK: The number one thing we can offer is a growing and exciting platform with great clients, and the opportunity to access excellent work with very high quality lawyers in a collaborative and supportive environment. What we expect are people that will embrace that opportunity, that are willing to work hard and also enjoy what they're doing, and that aspire to become part of a team focused on excellent client service above all.
CA: Is there anything else you'd like our readers to know?
PK: I want to mention that we have worked very hard to build relationships between offices and practice areas. Our system enables our management to be represented across all offices, rather than being centralized in one location. We have a pretty transparent management structure, and that means that we consider views from across the firm and decisions are made collectively. If someone is wondering whether this is a healthy work environment, it's an important characteristic. I've seen firms that don't do this well, and ultimately it becomes corrosive.
Interview with hiring partner Lisa Brown
Chambers Associate: Have any changes been made to your recruitment process our readers should be aware of?
Lisa Brown: With the recent merger we've expanded the number of law schools we visit in Texas. We went to the University of Wisconsin this year as well, which was new. Otherwise our recruitment process continues to work well!
CA: How are you encouraging diversity in recruitment?
LB: We start with our actual recruiting committee, and ensure we have a diverse group. We also created our own scholarship for diverse law students at the University of Michigan and the University of Illinois, including the opportunity to work for us during summer after their first year. We give summer associates a chance to participate in Dykema's diversity initiatives while they're with us. We also have a women's business initiative they can get involved with.
CA: What does an associate have to do if they want to make partner, and how early on should they look to place themselves on that track?
LB: Our current track to be evaluated for partnership is two tiered; we have salary partners and equity partners. The track rate is 7.5 years for salaried partners. A solid performance at the firm and good relationships with colleagues are crucial criteria of course, and we also look out for associates who are proactive and take ownership of their projects. Dykema associates meet deadlines, add value, show they are dependable, crave responsibility and are up for challenges. People who demonstrate these qualities throughout their time here make great partners. We're also known for a focus on client service and for being responsive, so associates will want to develop these skills as well.
CA: What do associates go on to do if they don't stay at the firm?
LB: Lately if associates have left they've gone to in house positions. Not to a competitor across the street. Many associates go to our clients too, if they leave, and can then enjoy working with former colleagues. In that sense it works out well for us.
CA: How important is the social scene to the associate experience at Dykema?
LB: We've got a good one. We try to create a balance between working hard and meeting lots of folks and colleagues across our many offices. We have a series of retreats that target different levels of associates, starting from summer associates, associates fresh out of law school, mid-level and senior attorneys. The retreats emphasize training but also include social time for the participants. At the retreats, everyone has a few days to get to know each other and the office where the event is held. In addition, each of the offices also organizes office-specific events and outings throughout the year. It's a good mix.
CA: What's the number one thing you expect of associates and the number one thing you can offer them?
LB: The number one thing we expect is a solid performance here, including solid writing skills and analytical capabilities. We seek to develop those skills, of course, and we offer a very good base to do that, with an excellent training program. We're devoted to mentoring and we offer associates sophisticated work from large clients.
CA: What distinguishes your summer program from other firms'?
LB: A few things: our culture of taking our work seriously but ourselves not so much distinguishes the atmosphere in our offices. It allows a lot of different people to fit in, with the common traits of being practical, approachable, and down to earth. Another distinguishing factor is our work itself. Summer associates sample a lot of practice areas and also work with colleagues in other offices, because that's the way we are organised. We encourage them to take responsibility from the start. 9 of our 15 offices run summer programs.
CA: Can you talk us through the application process?
LB: We visited 16 campuses and two job fairs for OCIs this year. The OCI is the first contact we have with candidates – although we do accept write-ins. The first thing we do is study a candidates' resume for participation in journals, experience in leadership positions, and in student organizations – activities that suggest they're able to develop client relationships. The quality of law school and a strong academic performance are important, but we don't have a grade cut-off.
During interviews we ask open-ended questions designed to elicit information about how they've made decisions and solved problems previously. We always like to see they've done their homework on us, and whether they can articulate legal issues and work well with others. They'll have more time to ask us questions in the callback.
CA: What happens during callbacks?
LB: We have more time to drill down to some of the areas I mention in my previous answer. Questions at this stage may just be more detailed. It's more of a back and forth too, but we're looking for those same traits. Our incoming class of 2016 will include associates from 9 of the 16 schools we visited, plus an additional four we didn't visit on campus.
CA: What's the personality trait that Dykema associates tend to have in common?
LB: After the merger we launched a firm-wide project to ask that very question, run by a consultant. We wanted to ask who might thrive at the firm, and we came out with: intelligent, hard working, team players, and people who show enthusiasm and initiative.
The decline of Detroit
The past few decades have seen Detroit experience a remarkable slump. This is perhaps best displayed by the fact that its population stood at nearly 2 million in 1950, and dropped to just under 700,000 in 2014. The city's reduced population has been accompanied by a dwindling automotive industry, high crime rates and even instances of urban decay in some of its bigger areas.
All this culminated in Detroit filing for bankruptcy toward the end of 2013, representing the largest municipal bankruptcy case in US history. Jones Day bankruptcy lawyer Kevyn Orr was appointed as emergency manager of the City and after almost a year of negotiation, in December 2014 Detroit came out of bankruptcy. We take a look at the possible causes of Detroit's decline, and the effects it has had on the city's legal market.
The day Detroit broke down
There have been many theories surrounding the decline of Detroit and the factors that may have contributed toward it. One such theory is the city's heavy reliance on the automotive industry and the role that has played in its downfall.
Certainly, over the years there has been a clear correlation between the growth of the auto sector and Detroit's prosperity. At the beginning of the 20th century, before the introduction of the Ford Model T (widely considered the first affordable automobile), the population of Detroit was around 285,000. But the auto industry's arrival into the city signaled a major change, as it quickly grew to become a driving force of Detroit's economy and helped it to attract close to a million new residents. By 1930 the city's population had reached close to 1.6 million people, which rose to nearly 2 million just before 1950.
Soon after this, however, the auto sector in Detroit began to run out of gas. Much rested on the dominance of the 'Big Three' automobile manufacturers: General Motors, Ford and Chrysler. Their hold over the market meant they could easily oust their smaller competitors and further cement their position as the three main players. But at the same time, they were beginning to shift their production away from the center of Detroit.
This trend continued onward from the 1950s, as many companies belonging to the auto industry migrated to other parts of the country and beyond, while those that remained eventually closed down. The financial troubles of major auto companies in the 1970s added further misery to the situation, and, despite a series of attempts to kickstart the auto industry in the 1980s and 90s, Detroit followed the fates of Chrysler and GM by filing for bankruptcy in 2013.
Although the auto industry is one of the main reasons behind Detroit's demise, other factors have played their part too. The rise of suburbs in the 1950s led to nearly 150,000 job losses in Detroit, while freeway construction during the same period reduced the population of many neighborhoods and made commuting significantly easier (meaning living and working outside the city had become a viable option).
Detroit also witnessed five days of riots in 1967, in which 43 people were killed and 467 were injured. On top of these casualties, countless stores and buildings were looted, damaged or burned down, and hundreds of families became homeless as a result. The riots also forced thousands of small businesses to permanently close down or desert the city in search of safety.
Detroit's reputation as a hotspot for crime and violence was exacerbated in the 1970s and 80s, when numerous street gangs were formed and began to take control of the city's drug trade. This helped to 'earn' it the label of the most dangerous city in America during the period, and in the early 90s crime rates there had reached nearly 3,000 violent crimes per 100,000 people.
While it's still considered one of the country's more dangerous cities, the Detroit of today doesn't quite have the same level of violence as that aforementioned period. In 2013, for instance, it saw a significant drop in crime compared to the previous year, though it did have the same number of murders as New York (a city with over 11 times the population of Detroit).
Driving out of town
Even before the news broke in 2013 that it had filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy, it would have been tough to argue against the evidence of Detroit's lengthy deterioration. But what has this meant for its legal market?
The economic uncertainty surrounding Detroit means law firms would be hard pressed to justify investing there right now, especially when you consider the long-standing presence many firms already have in the city. One of those is Dykema Gossett, which has been in Detroit for the better part of 100 years. And if we use Dykema as a case study, it shows an ever-increasing importance for firms based in the area to extend significantly beyond their roots.
Dykema has continued to branch out from its core in Detroit, the latest development a combination with Texan Cox Smith. Previously, in January and July 2013 it opened offices in Minneapolis and Austin, adding to other recent openings in Charlotte and Dallas, as well as further growth in the likes of Chicago, LA and Washington, DC. And with 15 offices now spread across seven states in the US, Dykema has come to be viewed as more of a national outfit than purely a Detroit firm – a trend that can also be applied to others situated in the city. In fact, while Detroit is still officially the home of its HQ, Dykema's biggest office is actually in Chicago.
The firm's shift away from Detroit arguably goes hand in hand with its broadened scope of practices. It may have been serving the auto industry for over 85 years, but Dykema has ensured it doesn't repeat the city's mistake of over-relying on the sector as a source of work. A look at the Chambers USA rankings shows its expertise in several areas, as it scores highly in corporate/M&A, general commercial litigation, labor & employment, and real estate (all in the Michigan area). The same goes for its clients: beyond big-name auto manufacturers like Chrysler, Ford and GM, the firm represents over 40 of the top Fortune 100 companies, plus more than 70 banks and financial services businesses.
For Dykema in particular, its healthy state belies that of the place in which it was born. Chairman and CEO Peter Kellett tells us the bankruptcy “has not effected us in the mix of work or the quality or quantity of work we've taken on, or in our ability to attract talent to the office.” Kellett recalls; “A couple of years ago many people were sitting watching the city heading into bankruptcy and thought it would be a long-term, chronic albatross around the city's neck.” In the wake of the bankruptcy approval plan Kellett's optimistic about the future: “The automotive sector is much healthier, there's a lot of public and private infrastructure. The best indicator of improvement is that there are many more people – particularly young people – living and working in the central city. It's a great sign and we're pretty upbeat.”
So, while the future of Detroit remains uncertain, firms like Dykema have avoided such a fate by making forceful yet measured decisions to extend their reach beyond the limits of the city.
Dykema Gossett PLLC
400 Renaissance Center,
- Head Office: Detroit, MI
- Number of domestic offices: 15
- Number of international offices: 0
- Partners (US): 276
- Associates (US): 141
- Summer Salary 2016
- 2Ls: $1,900-$2,700/week
- 1Ls hired? Occasionally
- Split summers offered? In Texas
- Summers 2016: 31
- Offers/acceptances 2015 15 offers, 10 acceptances
Main areas of work Dykema provides legal counsel to clients ranging from Fortune 500 corporations and middle-market businesses, to financial institutions, governmental entities and non-profits. Our practices include antitrust; appellate; automotive; banking; bankruptcy; class action; lending; litigation; construction; corporate; e-discovery; education; employee benefits and executive compensation; energy; environmental; estates and trusts; gaming; government policy; government investigations and compliance; healthcare; immigration; intellectual property and IP litigation; infrastructure; insurance; privacy, data security and e-commerce; private equity, venture capital and mezzanine finance; labor and employment; life sciences; mergers and acquisitions; product liability; public finance; real estate; securities and taxation.
Firm profile With more than a century of experience and nearly 500 attorneys and other professionals, Dykema is one of the top law firms for business in the United States. Serving clients from our 15 offices in California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Texas and Washington, DC, we help clients address their most complex and sophisticated issues. We provide the highest quality legal counsel and exceptional client service from a work environment that thrives on cooperation, diversity and inclusion. Many of our attorneys and staff have made Dykema their home since the start of their careers. We consider this to be the highest compliment and one of the reasons for our ongoing success.
• Number of 1st year associates: 20
• Number of 2nd year associates: 12
• Associate salaries: 1st year: $115,000-$145,000 (depending on office)
• 2nd year: Not lock step
• Clerking policy: Yes
Law Schools attending for OCIs in 2016:
Baylor, Detroit-Mercy, Howard, Illinois, Michigan, MSU, Northwestern, Notre Dame, OSU, St.Mary’s, Texas Tech, Uof T - Austin, UCLA, USC, Wayne State
Summer associate profile:
A successful summer associate candidate will show initiative, excellent analytical skills and strong writing ability. We look for associates who are willing to work hard, have demonstrated leadership potential and enjoy working in a team environment.
Summer program components:
Dykema’s summer associate program offers challenging assignments and a real life law practice experience with opportunities to participate in client, court and other formal settings. We integrate our summer associates into the firm via practice area and professional development activities, including a writing workshop with a professional writing instructor. We host social activities for summer associates to become better acquainted with us and our culture. We also provide summer associates with a senior and junior advisor. These advisors, together with our training, social activities and the substantive practice experience, have greatly contributed to the success of Dykema’s summer program.