The Summer Associate Program at BFKN is designed to identify law students who can grow and advance at our firm. For this reason, we invest significant time, attention, resources, and senior-level guidance in those individuals we select as summer associates. We promote a lean, collaborative, and entrepreneurial business-focused working style. The structure of our program gives summer associates an opportunity to experience how we practice law and gain a strong sense of the collegial atmosphere we have nurtured, while ensuring that the summer associate makes a valuable contribution to our firm and clients.

Who We Seek

We aim for our Summer Associate Program to be an intimate and hands-on experience. For this reason, we hire a small summer class each year of rising 2Ls. We seek candidates with strong academic achievement, excellent interpersonal skills, diverse perspectives, and a high level of maturity.

While we concentrate our interviewing efforts on a small number of top-tier law schools, we encourage rising 2Ls at other law schools to apply online once summer associate recruiting opens, usually in late May or early June.

What the Experience Entails

Summer associates are given meaningful assignments that are consistent with junior associate work through an “open assignment” system. They are able to identify the areas of practice that they are most interested in. We provide summer associates the opportunity to perform research and draft pleadings and briefs for client litigation matters. For transaction matters, our summer associates regularly work on definitive agreements and ancillary documents and assist with closings. A firm partner chairs our Summer Associate program and is responsible for coordinating with practice group chairs to identify and assign work, as well as serving as the liaison for the summer associates with our staff and our attorneys.

The firm serves a variety of industries, including real estate, financial services, luxury, and motor vehicles. We are committed to the summer associates experiencing our culture, our practice areas and industries, and our people, so we often invite them to client meetings, business trips, court appearances, and other important client-related proceedings.

Our summer program is generally 10 weeks long and starts in late May. We will consider summer program splits on a case-by-case basis. Summer associates are paid the same salary as our first-year associates, on a prorated basis. As with other major firms, students who accept a permanent offer of employment with BFKN receive a summer stipend during the summer of their bar exam.

When We Have Fun

Our firm culture sets us apart from other firms. Preserving a collegial, respectful atmosphere is important to us. BFKN’s summertime social activities reflect this spirit, as we take time to connect with one another and enjoy summer in Chicago. Our summer associates are invited to attend all firmwide social events involving attorneys and staff, as well as participate in several smaller events that facilitate more interaction between attorneys and summer associates.

How to Apply

Click here to apply to our Summer Associate Program. Candidates will complete an application form as well as provide their resume and an unofficial law school transcript for the first year.

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