Legal Field

Are you considering a job or internship in the legal field? Explore these online resources to get started.  

Interested in law school?  Check out our Pre-Law Advising resources, which includes a page of law related internship resources. Schedule an appointment to meet with a Career Advisor.

The Office of Career and Professional Development at Washington and Lee University has not vetted any of the internship and volunteer opportunity listings on this page and makes no representations or guarantees regarding any of the listed opportunities. It is the responsibility of students and alumni to do their own due diligence when applying for and accepting any of these opportunities.

Quicklinks: Job and Internship Resources | Summer Internships & Programs | Gap Year Opportunities | Finding Jobs in the Private SectorStudent Organizations and Departmental Resources | Other ResourcesAlumni to Know

Job and Internship Resources

Summer Internships and Programs

This is not an exhaustive list. Visit our Pre-Law Advising page for additional information and resources.

Gap Year Opportunities

Finding Attorney Jobs in the Private Sector

Lawyers work in a variety of environments in the private sector including corporations (which often require more legal experience), large law firms, and small firms with narrow specialties. Below are tips on starting your law career path post law school. Schedule an appointment with a career advisor in Handshake if you have questions.

Large Firms

  • offer a variety of services which means you will practice law involving different issues (corporate law, taxes, real estate)
  • research large firms' summer associate program to be prepared and apply early
  • participate in on-campus interviews and remember to know who you are interviewing with if you have multiple interviews in a week
  • network with alumni and others in the legal profession to learn more about the industry and get interviewing tips

Small Firms

  • can either practice in several areas or have a focus in a certain specialized area
  • less structured hiring cycle, so it is important to research multiple firms to know when they have an opening
  • very important to network; job offers often depend on recommendations from others
  • look into gaining some attorney experience since smaller firms may not have as much training opportunities
  • seek informational interviews to learn more about the industry or specific firm

Student Organizations & Departmental Resources

  • Executive Committee of the Student Body
  • Student Judicial Council
  • Hearing Advisor Program - Hearing Advisors support, advise, and assist students accused of an honor or conduct violation in preparing and presenting their cases to the Executive Committee, the Student Judicial Council, and the Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Board. 
  • Law, Justice & Society Minor
  • Mock Trial - Washington and Lee Mock Trial provides undergraduate students with the opportunity to develop critical thinking and public speaking skills and an understanding of the American justice system and its practices and procedures through preparing for and engaging in trial simulations in competition with teams from other colleges and universities. The organization will participate in competitions under the aegis of the American Mock Trial Association, and in other mock trial competitions as the organization's governing body deems to be in the best interest of the organization.

Other Resources

Alumni To Know

One of the best ways to explore careers and find job opportunities is to network with progressional. Below are some alumni who have experience in the field and have volunteered to be a resource. To connect with someone, log in to Colonnade Connections and find their contact information. Not sure how to begin networking? Schedule an appointment with a Career Fellow to learn how.  

Contact Alumni

Kasee Sparks Heisterhagen '06

Kasee graduated from Washington and Lee in 2006 after majoring in Religion and Politics. Kasee serves as Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama as a white-collar fraud prosecutor. She was previously a partner at the law firm Burr & Forman, LLP, in Mobile, Alabama, where she worked in the areas of maritime law, creditors' rights, bankruptcy, and commercial litigation. Kasee holds a Proctorship in Admiralty from the Maritime Law Association of the United States and has served on numerous boards of directors for maritime organizations.

Neil Millhiser '11L

Neil graduated from W&L Law in '11. He received a BA in English with a Concentration in Creative Writing from Elon University in 2005. Neil is the General Manager and General Counsel for Patient Services Inc. (PSI). PSI, a non-profit 501(c)(3) premium and copayment foundation, provides financial support and guidance for qualified patients with specific, rare, chronic diseases. In addition to overseeing the management at PSI, Neil also provides in-house legal counsel and oversees various compliance issues.

Kate Lester Mowery '06 '11L

Kate Lester Mowery is an associate at the Delaware law firm, Richards, Layton & Finger, P.A., working in the practice areas of complex commercial litigation, products liability, trade secrets and intellectual property. Her practice encompasses actions in the Delaware state courts and the District Court of Delaware. Kate is involved with the Federal Bar Association, Delaware State Bar Association and the Rodney Inns of Court. She completed the District Court of Delaware's Federal Trial Practice Seminar in 2015. She is also currently on the Alumni Board of her high school, Wilmington Friends School.

Mary Caitlin Ray '09 '12L

In 2012, Ms. Ray graduated from Washington and Lee School of Law. During law school, Ms. Ray was a Kirgis Fellow, an Honor Advocate, and the Publications Editor of the Journal of Civil Rights and Social Justice. As part of the Third Year Program, Ms. Ray served as a student law clerk to the Honorable Michael F. Urbanski, District Court Judge in the Western District of Virginia. During the summers, Ms. Ray combined her language skills with her interest in international law as a summer associate with McDermott, Will & Emery's Shanghai office. She also served as a research assistant to Professor Susan Franck, focusing on the structures and procedures of international tribunals.

J.R. Smith '91

J.R. graduated from Washington and Lee in 1991 after majoring in Journalism and East Asian Studies (Japanese). He spent three years in Japan post-graduation before returning to graduate from the University Of Richmond School Of Law in 1997. After graduation, J.R. clerked for W&L alum David H. Adams in Norfolk, Virginia, a retired federal bankruptcy judge. He then joined Hunton & Williams in Richmond, Virginia, where he remains a partner today. As a H&W lawyer, J.R. has lived and/or worked in over 40 countries throughout the world, including spending three years opening and managing a new office for his law firm in Tokyo from 2011 to 2014. His legal practice involves corporate finance, infrastructure development, restructuring and commercial litigation.

Samuel T. Wilmoth '09

Sam Wilmoth is a 2009 graduate and was a European History major. While at W&L, he was a member of the Kappa Alpha Order, served as a History Department peer tutor, and participated in the English department's creative writing program. One of his favorite W&L experiences was the 2008 spring term trip to Italy with Professors Alex Brown and Rebecca Benefiel for a course in Pompeii and Rome. Following graduation, Sam stayed in Lexington to help James Dick run the 2009 Appalachian Adventure pre-orientation program.

Philip Yoon, Esquire, '04L

Mr. Yoon is the Chief Staff Attorney for the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, one of the busiest appellate courts in the country. The Chief Staff Attorney oversees the Superior Court's Central Legal Staff, which is responsible for monitoring and resolving the over 8,000 appeals and 12,000 motions filed with the Superior Court every year, addresses questions posited by the Court's 20 Judges, and prepares the en banc session of the Court. Mr. Yoon has offices in Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and Pittsburgh, and is based in Philadelphia.