2017 American College of Employee Benefits Counsel 13th Annual Employee Benefits Writing Prize

SUBJECT: Any topic in the field of employee benefits law.

OPEN TO: Any J.D. and graduate (L.L.M. or S.J.D.) law students enrolled at any time between August 15, 2016 and August 15, 2017. 

SUBMIT BY:    June 1, 2017. 


Alvin D. Lurie Memorial Award                $1,500

Sidney M. Perlstadt Memorial Award      $1,500

Winners will be honored during the College’s annual black tie dinner on October 14, 2017 in San Francisco, CA.  They will receive a plaque and an employee benefits treatise published by Bloomberg BNA Books. The winning papers will also be distributed to the Fellows of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel, experienced attorneys who have made significant contributions to the advancement of the employee benefits field in a wide range of practice settings including law and consulting firms, universities, labor unions, advocacy organizations and government agencies throughout the United States.  The College will also use its best efforts to have one or more of the winning papers published in the Benefits Law Journal or another professional or scholarly publication, if deemed suitable by the College’s Writing Prize Committee and the editors of the publication.

For information concerning the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel, contact Brian Dougherty or consult the website.

Writing Prize Rules: 

  1. Eligibility/Topics. Except as provided in (6) below, applicants must be enrolled full-time or part-time in law school between August 15, 2016 and August 15, 2017 and seeking a J.D. or a graduate law degree (e.g., L.L.M. or S.J.D.).  Papers must deal with employee benefits topics.  As an illustrative example, a paper might address legal issues involving health benefits, pensions, 401(k) plans, severance, executive compensation, claims, appeals, current or former spouses’ or domestic partners’ benefits, collectively-bargained benefits, benefits in bankruptcy, ERISA litigation, fiduciary obligations or the tax treatment of benefits/contributions.  
  1. Papers should not exceed 40 pages (double-spaced, in 12 point type, with an inch margin on each side), not including footnotes.
  2. Papers must be submitted as email attachments to Brian Dougherty and should be submitted as Word or pdf documents. No information identifying the author or law school should be included in the text, the footnotes, or the filename.  That information, an address, a telephone number and enrollment status information should be provided in the email message.
  3. Submissions may include papers prepared for class assignments, law journals or other purposes, as well as those written especially for the Prize.
  4. Student papers submitted for publication in law reviews or other law school journals or periodicals but not yet published are eligible for the Prize, provided that (i) the version submitted for the Prize does not reflect any changes made to the paper after submission of the manuscript to any publication and (ii) the College receives any consents necessary to publish or republish the article.
  5. Selection of Winners. Winning papers will be selected by the Writing Prize Committee based on the factors they deem relevant.  Among other factors, the Committee will consider: (i) depth and creativity of legal analysis; (ii) thoroughness of legal research; (iii) organization and writing style; (iv) difficulty of subject matter; and (v) consideration of employee benefits policy implications.  A focused, in depth analysis of a discrete topic generally is considered more favorably than a broad survey piece.  Presentation (e.g., organization, proofreading, proper grammar, etc.) also carries substantial weight.  The Committee may decline to consider a poorly organized paper or one laden with grammatical errors for those reasons alone.  The determination of the Committee is final.  It is anticipated that winners will be notified by July 21, 2017, or shortly thereafter.
  6. Publication of Winning Articles(s). The College will use its best efforts to arrange for publication of the winning papers in a professional or scholarly publication, if deemed suitable by the Writing Prize Committee and the publication’s editors.  In addition, the winning papers will be posted on the College’s website.
  7. Prizes. There are cash awards for two winning papers.  However, the College may, in its discretion, decide to split prizes, to award additional prizes or to award fewer than two prizes.  Winners will be guests of the College during its annual black tie dinner to be held on October 16, 2017 in San Francisco, CA.  The College covers the travel and lodging expenses for the prize recipients.
  8. Deadline. Papers must be submitted in the manner described in paragraph 1(b) above and must be received no later than Midnight, Eastern Time, on June 1, 2017.
  9. Disclaimer. The College disclaims responsibility for any failure to give due consideration to any submission due to any email or other electronic transmission, storage or archival errors, regardless of the cause.  However, the Committee may waive the eligibility requirements applicable to any student whose submitted paper was not afforded due consideration on account of such an error in a prior year’s contest.

Questions concerning the Competition should be directed to Brian Dougherty, Chair of the ACEBC Writing Prize Committee.




National Association of Women Lawyers Inaugural YouTube Video Contest

Please join the National Association of Women Lawyers (“NAWL”) as we highlight “Women Lawyers Succeeding!” NAWL invites you to participate in its inaugural YouTube video competition! Submit a two-minute video on “Women Lawyers Succeeding!” that showcases what that phrase means to your group.

NAWL will post all submissions that are suitable for posting on its YouTube channel. The three videos with the highest number of views by February 1, 2017 will be declared the winners. The winning videos will be shown at NAWL’s Mid-Year Meeting & Awards Luncheon in Chicago on March 10, 2017 and may be shown at future programs focused on what “Women Lawyers Succeeding!” means today.

Contest Rules and Requirements:

  • Submissions will only be accepted from groups – no individuals, please! We like to see women lawyers working collaboratively!
  • The submitting entity ― separate from the organization which it is a part ― must be comprised of at least 50% women. Hence, law firm and corporate legal department women’s initiatives and affinity groups qualify even if the firm or company is not 50% women.
  • Only one submission per group is permitted. In the event that more than one entry is received from the same group, only the first entry will be accepted.
  • Submissions must be accompanied by a fully-completed entry form and signed release indicating that you own or have permission for the use of any and all content contained in your submission.
  • Entrants are encouraged to promote viewing of their video via social media. Follow NAWL on Twitter at @NAWLWomeninLaw and be sure to tag us in your posts!
  • The winning entries will be determined solely by the number of views logged between the time the video is posted and 5:00 PM CT on February 1, 2017.
  • NAWL will post accepted submissions within 2 business days of submission.
  • NAWL reserves the right to establish other categories of winners in addition to those determined by the largest number of views.
  • NAWL reserves the right to reject any submission it deems unsuitable for posting on its YouTube channel.

Videos must be submitted via Dropbox. The contest release and entry form may be sent directly via email.

Students can learn more by visiting our website or clicking here.


Deadline Approaching: The 19th Annual Entertainment Law Initiative Writing Competition!

The submission deadline for the 19th Annual Entertainment Law Initiative Writing Competition is approaching!  All entries are due by January 4, 2017 at 10am PST (1pm EST).

The competition invites law students to write a 3,000 word essay about an issue currently facing the music industry and propose a solution. Winners of the competition have gone on to successful careers in music, entertainment media, and beyond.

This contest is open to juris doctor candidates currently enrolled at an ABA accredited law school. LL.M. and any other advanced degree candidates are not eligible.

Prizes Include: 

  • One GRAMMY Awards® Show Ticket
  • Round-Trip Airfare to the GRAMMY Awards
  • Hotel Accommodations
  • Finalists are featured at the prestigious Entertainment Law Initiative Luncheon during GRAMMY Week
  • One ticket for the MusiCares® person of the Year Tribute Gala Honoring Tom Petty
  • First-Place Winner Receives $5,000
  • Four Runners-Up Receive $1,500

 For specific details and information, please ask your CDO advisor or visit the website


2017 Law Student Legal Writing Competition

This writing competition (“Competition”) is sponsored by the Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development Law (“Forum”) of the American Bar Association (“ABA”), 321 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654 (the “Sponsor”).

The goal of the competition is to encourage law students to become involved in the Forum. It is also intended to attract students to the affordable housing, community development or pro bono practice fields, and to encourage scholarship in these fields.

Each entrant must follow the rules of the competition detailed herein.

Open to all law students who are at the time of entry, (a) enrolled in a law school that is at the time of entry, ABA Accredited, (b) members of the ABA and the Forum, (c) at least 18 years old, and (d) U.S. citizens. Employees of the ABA, its respective affiliates, and immediate family or household members of such employees are not eligible for the Competition. 

Entries should address any legal issue regarding affordable housing and/or community development law. Please visit the website that includes detailed information on the 2017 Writing Competition.


Palm Beach County Bar Association: Diversity Internship Program 2017 Application

The Diversity Internship Program is aimed at bringing diverse law students to Palm Beach County to spend a summer working with county law firms and government organizations.

Program Length: May 30, 2017 through August 11, 2017. Firms and agencies are encouraged to place an intern for a minimum of at least 6 weeks.

Work Schedules: 20 to 40 hours per week. All work schedules are to be determined independently by the intern and employer.

Pay Rates: Firms will pay a minimum of $15.00 per hour. Each participating firm will determine its own pay rate.

To see the Law Student Application, along with the DIP Program Bullet Points and the Intern Outline & Tips for Success Guide which provides more information about the application process and expectations for the program, visit the website.




AIJA launches the 2017 Best International Future Lawyer Award

After the big success of the 2016 edition, AIJA launches now the Best International Future Lawyer Award 2017. Law students and trainees can win this prestigious award for the best written Essay on The impact of technology on the law and/or on the legal profession.

This is a unique opportunity to show law students’ potential to their future colleagues and employers. The Award is open to any law students who are still enrolled at any university worldwide at the time the Paper is submitted.

Participating is very easy and can make future lawyers fly very high! Make sure you spread the word and encourage THE best international future lawyers to participate.

For details, please visit the website.

The National Law Review is Hosting its 2016 Law Student Writing Competition

The National Law Review(NLR) consolidates practice-oriented legal analysis from a variety of sources for easy access by lawyers, paralegals, law students, business executives, insurance professionals, accountants, compliance officers, human resource managers, and other professionals who wish to better understand specific legal issues relevant to their work.

The NLR Law Student Writing Competition offers law students the opportunity to submit articles for publication consideration on the NLR Web site.

Each month’s entries will be judged and the top two to four articles chosen will be published on the NLR website.

Submissions are now being accepted. 

Suggested Topics:

  • Cyber-security Issues – Major data breaches, EU Privacy Shield, Wearable Devices,Medical Devices
  • Election 2016 Coverage
  • Tax Issues
  • Constitutional Issues – First Amendment, Gun Control
  • Employment Issues – Ban the Box Laws, Minimum Wage,Transgender Accommodations, Age/Sex Discrimination

Articles covering current issues related to other areas of the law may also be submitted.

How to Submit:

Entries for the November contest must be submitted via email by 5:00 pm Central Standard Time November 30, 2016.  Winners will be published in early December.

For complete submission guidelines and accompanying materials go to:Submission Guidelines.

Why Students Should Submit Articles:

Students have the opportunity to publicly display their legal knowledge and skills.

The student’s photo, biography, and contact information will be posted with each article, allowing for professional recognition and exposure.

Winning articles are published alongside those written by respected attorneys from Am Law 200 and other prominent firms as well as from other respected professional associations.

Now more than ever, business development skills are expected from law firm associates earlier in their careers. NLR wants to give law students valuable experience generating consumer-friendly legal content of the sort which is included for publication in law firm client newsletters, law firm blogs, bar association journals and trade association publications.

Student postings will remain in the NLR online database for up to two years, easily accessed by potential employers.

See website for additional details.


ABA Business Law Section Now Accepting Applications for the 2017 Diversity Clerkship Program

The ABA Business Law Section sponsors the Diversity Clerkship Program. This summer program provides business law clerkship placements for nine qualified diverse first or second year law students.  Participating clerks will receive support and mentoring in the business law field and exposure to business practices.

The Business Law Section Diversity Clerkship Program focus is on judicial clerkships, where diversity among judicial clerks remains disproportionately low. For law students, serving as a judicial law clerk is a mark of distinction and honor that will advance their future career opportunities in law practice, and academia, in government as high-level appointees, and in securing appointments to the bench. Clerkships in business law courts provide another unique and highly important benefit to law students: the ability to see a microcosm of business practice, and allow the student to become familiar with business issues. Such a background will prove invaluable to a career in business law, whether it be litigation or transactional work.

Applicants must be current first or second year law students attending an ABA-approved law school; be diverse; and demonstrate financial need. Applicants must also be ABA Law Student Division and Business Law Section Members.

The application for the 2017 Diversity Clerkship program is now available here.

To apply for the 2017 Diversity Clerkship, please submit the required materials to Stephanie Rodriguez by December 30, 2016.

*First year law students may submit their law school transcript after the application deadline with approval from Stephanie Rodriguez.

For all details and information, please visit the website or ask your CDO advisor.


The Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program Application Process Opens Friday, November 18, 2016 – for 3Ls and Recent Graduates!

Are you interested in a career in the federal government?  The Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program matches outstanding graduate students with exciting Federal opportunities.  This rigorous, two-year paid fellowship includes challenging assignments, developmental assignments, and networking opportunities. Finalists appointed as PMFs are hired by Federal Agencies and engage in solving domestic and/or international issues in areas such as public administration, engineering, technology, science, criminal justice, health, privacy, cybersecurity, and financial management, to name a few.

The on-line application will open Friday, November 18 and close on Thursday, December 1, 2016.  The application will be accessible via an announcement on USAJOBS. The announcement will include detailed instructions on how to apply. Allow approximately 3-4 hours to complete the entire application, to include: the biographical, eligibility, and demographics information; document submission; essay; and, on-line assessment.

To learn more about eligibility and how to apply, please review the “Become a PMF” section on the PMF website. Carefully review the “Application Process” and “Application Tips” sections on the PMF website before starting your on-line application. The application process is very competitive.

If you have any questions, please email Karen Warren, the law school’s PMF liaison.

If you are selected as a Finalist, you will be invited to participate in the virtual PMF job fair and given online access to the PMF job opportunities.  Once you secure a position with a Federal Agency, you will become a PMF.


Latham & Watkins hosts annual Diversity Leadership Academy from March 31 to April 2, 2017 in San Francisco

Diversity Leadership Academy, taking place from March 31 to April 2, 2017 in San Francisco, brings together Latham lawyers from around the globe and talented first-year law students from across the United States, with a specific focus on developing and empowering future leaders of the legal profession and creating community among our lawyers, recruits, and 1L guests, all of whom share a commitment to diversity and inclusion.

This firm-sponsored professional development and training program provides first-year law students with the information and skills needed to successfully navigate the law firm interview and hiring process and transition from law student to practicing attorney. Students will participate in interactive seminars on a variety of topics, including resume writing, interview skills, diversity and inclusion, and pro bono.

Applications can be accessed starting on December 1, 2016 on the website.

Applications are due on January 11, 2017.