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Should law firms seek to recruit the economically disadvantaged?

Posted Dec 4, 2013 6:50 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Law firms seek to increase diversity by recruiting women, minorities and gays. Why not expand the definition and recruit lawyers from economically disadvantaged backgrounds?

That’s the suggestion from American Lawyer editor in chief Robin Sparkman in a guest blog post at the Careerist.

Some institutions are already tackling the problem of income inequality, Sparkman writes. Amherst College tried to increase economic diversity by recruiting more students from junior colleges and hiking financial aid for students in need. In London, several law firms are participating in an internship program for young people from lower-income or blue-collar backgrounds who may be interested in future legal careers.

“Why can’t The Am Law 200 tackle this issue head-on when it comes to associate recruiting?” Sparkman asks. “Why not make identifying and actively recruiting law students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds a priority?”

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