Diversity Recruiting

Gibson Dunn believes that diversity among lawyers is essential to our continued success as one of the preeminent law firms in the world. In an increasingly global landscape, we understand that it is crucial that we incorporate diverse competencies, experiences and viewpoints into our workforce. We are proud of our diverse partnership and look forward to developing a new and diverse generation of lawyers who will continue the long tradition of quality and excellence for which Gibson Dunn is known.

At law schools across the country, we encourage diverse law students to pursue a career at Gibson Dunn.   We are actively involved in partnerships with diverse law student groups on law school campuses across the nation.  Events that we hold every year in conjunction with these groups include panel presentations (on topics ranging from interviewing to pro bono issues to practice-group and matter-specific discussions), mentoring programs, receptions, and mock interview trainings.  It is our pleasure to provide financial support to help these groups thrive and support their law school communities, as well as to connect our eager attorneys with law students seeking information and opportunities.

Furthering these efforts, we also offer several Diversity and Inclusion Scholarships yearly to rising 2L law students from underrepresented groups in the law who have a commitment to increasing diversity in the legal profession.  Our hope is that these reduce the financial stress recipients face during their law school career, allowing them to become even more involved in their own law school community and efforts to support other law students from underrepresented groups. Along with financial remuneration, scholarship recipients also receive a summer associate position in a Gibson Dunn office, offering them the opportunity to not only work alongside our attorneys but also to create the career-long mentoring relationships that are a hallmark of the Gibson Dunn community. We invite you to find out more about the scholarships and the application process (PDF).

We have also instituted a 1L Diversity Fellowship Program that offers continuing, robust mentoring to a group of 1L summer associates each year.  Once selected, Gibson Dunn 1L Fellows are formally paired with mentors who begin connecting in the Spring of the fellows’ 1L year and stay with their mentee through all three years of law school (and beyond).  These fellows then join us as summer associates in a Gibson Dunn office, experiencing substantive and interesting legal work while participating in social activities designed to connect them to other Gibson Dunn attorneys and the cities in which they live.  During that 1L summer, our fellows will also attend the 1L Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Scholars Summit Program where they will meet each other and attorneys from other firms and organizations participating in the LCLD Scholars Program.  Then, after completing their 2L year, our 1L Fellows are eligible to rejoin us and experience heightened summer experiences, including the opportunity to spend part of their summer working in the legal department of one of our clients.

Through these, other pipeline programs (like our hosting of a pre-law student through the Sponsors for Educational Opportunity Internship Program), and a focus on recruiting for diversity in our lateral attorney hiring, we constantly strive to not only diversify our attorney ranks but also to create opportunities for expanded access to the highest echelons of the legal profession.

Gibson Dunn understands that choosing a firm can be a difficult and weighty decision, and it is important to many law students that the firm they choose supports diversity.  Some may have questions that specifically pertain to what it is like to be a diverse lawyer at the firm, and all Gibson Dunn summer associates are given a chance to learn more about our diversity efforts.  Additionally, our Diversity department and local diversity committees (along with office affinity groups) host various events for summer associates that are designed to answer diversity-related questions and solicit new ideas to help us constantly refine our efforts to promote diversity.

For more information about Gibson Dunn’s recruiting program, visit our Careers page.

Each year, we invite a small number of highly-qualified first-year law students who are committed to advancing diversity in the legal profession to join our 1L Diversity Fellowship Program.  As part of this robust program, these students will join a cohort of 1L summer associates located across all of our U.S. offices.  Upon selection, each Fellow will be formally paired with attorney mentors who will support and advise their Fellow from the Spring of the Fellow’s 1L year through all three years of law school and beyond.

Each 1L Fellow will then join the summer associate program in their Gibson Dunn office.  During that 1L summer, our Fellows will receive substantive training, perform significant legal work, and enjoy social events designed to encourage them to form informal mentoring bonds with additional Gibson Dunn attorneys.  The Fellows will also attend the 1L Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Scholars Summit Program where they will meet each other and attorneys from other firms and organizations participating in the LCLD Scholars Program.  This annual program covers a wide range of topics focused on mentoring and enhancing summer associates’ law school success and legal careers.

After completing their 2L year, our 1L Fellows are eligible to rejoin us and experience heightened summer experiences, including the opportunity to spend part of their summer working in the legal department of one of our clients.

For more information on the program, please contact one of our recruiting professionals and look for postings at your law school. We also invite you to read about New York corporate associate Matthew Gibbons’ experience as a 1L in our summer program (as part of our prior 1L Diversity Program). Matthew not only participated in the New York office’s summer program as a 1L but also returned for the entirety of his 2L summer before ultimately accepting his offer to join Gibson Dunn.

Our law student outreach continues year-round and includes building relationships and partnering with many diverse student organizations. We host events, substantive workshops and educational panels and provide annual financial support and mentoring through a variety of programs. Through these programs we establish personal relationships with diverse law students and provide them with useful guidance. At law schools throughout the United States, we encourage diverse students to pursue a career with us.

Below are just a few examples of our partnering with various diverse law student organizations:

  • Gibson Dunn hosted Stanford Law School Asian Pacific Islander Law Student Association (APILSA) and the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Silicon Valley’s (APABA-SV) Women in Law Trailblazer event.  The panelists were Judge Lucy H. Koh, U.S. District Court-Northern District of California; Salle Yoo, General Counsel at Uber and Professor Eumi Lee of U.C. Hastings School of Law.
  • Gibson Dunn hosted and participated in NYU Law School’s Latino Law Student Association’s (LaLSA) Annual Interview Skills Workshop.
  • Gibson Dunn hosted Columbia Law School’s Empowering Women of Color (EWOC) Judicial Clerkship Mixer attended by Columbia law students, judges, alumni and law clerks.
  • Rashida La Lande, Gibson Dunn partner and New York office Hiring Partner, presented “Behind the Curtain: What Interviewing Partners Look For” to the Columbia Law School Asian Pacific Islander Law Student Association (APILSA).
  • Gibson Dunn partner Douglas Champion and associate Tiaunia Henry presented “How To Have A Successful Summer” to the UCLA Black Law Student Association (BLSA).
  • Gibson Dunn annually hosts an LGBT mixer for Berkeley and Stanford law students. This event brings together the two LGBT on-campus organizations to foster community within these two Bay Area law schools.
  • Ron Kirk, Special Of Counsel in the Dallas office, hosted a fireside chat with Columbia Law School Black Law Student Association (BLSA).

Interview With Matt Gibbons

As a 1L, what attracted you to Gibson Dunn and what experiences were you interested in obtaining from the 1L Diversity Summer Program?

​As a 1L, I initially thought that I wanted to be a litigator and was attracted to the firm’s robust and accomplished litigation practice.

Why did you return as a 2L and ultimately decide to join Gibson Dunn?

​​I returned as a 2L and chose not to split my second summer because based on my experience the prior summer and my interactions with interviewers from other firms during EIW, I knew that no other top firm would be able to offer the culture within which, and the people with whom, I knew my personality and career would flourish.

What advice would you give to diverse law students looking to join Gibson Dunn?

I think all law students looking to join any firm should investigate the firm’s culture to gain a true understanding of the life of a full-time associate.  I found that the Gibson Dunn community truly sets this firm apart from others.

Describe what has been the best experience practicing law to date.

The best experience to date has been working for a pro bono client who provides education and healthcare services to HIV/AIDS orphans in Zimbabwe. As one means of raising money, the organization works with the children to create and sell dolls. The dolls come with a bio of the child and a description of the child’s interests. I was given a doll by the client as a show of appreciation. This was the most rewarding experience to date.​