Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck announced a $500,000 gift to be divided between the University of Colorado Law School (CU) and the University of Denver Sturm College of Law (DU). Each school will use its $250,000 gift to create an endowed fellowship program. This gift is the single largest gift from a law firm in the history of both universities.
“Our goal is that these endowments enable each university to create a unique fellowship program that simulates a real world legal environment for students, allowing them to gain beneficial hands-on experience and ultimately making them better attorneys,” said Adam Agron, co-managing partner at Brownstein. “At the same time, our endowments support two exceptional law schools from which so many of our lawyers have graduated and from where we continue to recruit our next generation.”
When it comes to law schools, nearly 30 percent of Brownstein’s attorneys are alumni of CU (35 attorneys) and DU (36 attorneys) including Agron (DU) and Bruce James, former managing partner (DU), as well as Norm Brownstein (CU) and Steve Farber (CU), founding members of the firm and current members of the firm’s executive committee. In addition to these two law schools, the firm also supports several other law schools across the country.
These fellowship programs demonstrate an innovative and collaborative approach between the public and private sector to support the next generation of attorneys creating a bridge for law students between school and practicing law.
“Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck is a special firm in the pantheon of Colorado Law. Founded by graduates of Colorado Law, the firm, with all of its successes, its tradition of supporting public service, and its national reputation, is a point of pride for the law school,” explained Phil Weiser, dean of the University of Colorado Law School. “We are just delighted that the firm is ‘paying it forward’ in this very impactful fashion, supporting our students gaining valuable experience over the summer and serving the public.”
The University of Colorado Law School has an established summer public service fellowship program that provides summer stipends to students working in the public sector. As the program has grown, Colorado Law has been able to provide stipends to all students working in summer public service jobs. At current stipend rates for public service work in Colorado, this investment will provide distributions to support five such stipends every summer, creating a class of “Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Fellows,” who can benefit from the firm’s generosity and contribute to the firm’s legacy of supporting public service.
“Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck continues to be a tremendous partner,” said Martin Katz, dean at Denver Law. “The firm’s support of this program is a win, win. Our students gain valuable experience, and the Colorado-based corporations where students are placed will receive great legal work within their general counsels’ offices.”
The Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Fellowship at Denver Law will expose students to the culture of an in-house legal department and enable the Fellows to better understand the unique needs and circumstances of corporate clients. This program, combined with the schools focus on experiential learning, will ensure graduates are ready to hit the ground running in private or in-house legal practice.
DU will begin its fellowship law program as early as fall 2015 and CU will begin to implement its fellowship law program in 2016. DU’s fellowship will focus on the private sector and CU’s fellowship will focus on government.