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A unique program for female law students in Australia

As the third edition of the Women at White & Case Mentoring Program is open for applications, we ask program alumna Lyn Nguyen to tell us about her experience.

For female law students in Australia, forging relationships with experienced women lawyers is a productive way to explore potential career paths, ask questions and have open conversations about their working lives. 

Running from November 2020 to August 2021, the program will offer ten students the opportunity for regular one-on-one discussions with senior White & Case women. It's an opportunity to discuss students' aspirations, plan their progress and get advice from mentors based on their own career journey. 

 A personal connection

Lyn Nguyen was chosen as a mentee for the 2018/19 Women at White & Case Mentoring Program. She joined the Firm as a paralegal in August 2019, working with the Disputes and Property, Environment and Planning teams on a broad range of matters including pro bono and international matters. Lyn has now accepted an offer to join the Firm as a Graduate in 2022.

She explains that simply getting to know her mentor was a positive experience. "Aside from learning about her experience as a senior commercial lawyer (and a parent of three), it was really fun chatting about our lives and sharing our interests outside of work. I particularly enjoyed having a tour of the Melbourne office at one of our catch-ups."

Lyn adds that, "My highlight was getting to know some of the many amazing women at White & Case. In addition to my mentor, I met and was introduced to other lawyers and non-lawyers at the Firm—some of whom I now have the pleasure of working with."

Insight into the Firm's culture and international work

According to Lyn, "I liked how the Mentoring Program gave me insight into White & Case's unique culture and the many fantastic opportunities available at the Firm. Something that particularly stood out to me was the truly global nature of the Firm. All graduates have an opportunity to complete an international rotation and the Australian offices work on many exciting international projects. Since working at the Firm, I have been able to experience this myself."

Practical advice and candid guidance

Lyn explains that her mentor gave her practical advice about working as a lawyer. "I am a second-generation Australian, and the first in my family to study at university and I didn't know anyone working in the legal profession. It was invaluable to be able to have candid and real conversations about my career and studies, and to have the support of someone who worked in law and had a wealth of experience to share." 

These conversations also boosted Lyn's confidence: "Like many law students, I often doubted myself and my capabilities. My mentor was (and still is) incredibly encouraging. This really helped me build my self-confidence and pushed me to believe in myself."

“The program opened the door to many exciting and career-changing opportunities”

Lyn says that female law students should consider applying for the new edition of the program, pointing out the opportunities that it has unlocked for her. "Unlike many other graduates, I did not come up through the Clerkship Program. My own progress was made possible through the relationships I built as a mentee—the program opened the door to many exciting and career-changing opportunities for me!"

In conclusion, she says, "The Mentoring Program is a unique experience that gives you the opportunity to really get to know and learn from an experienced senior female lawyer. Not only will you receive support and guidance, but you'll also get to know what it's really like working at a unique, leading global law firm like White & Case. As demonstrated by my own experience, you never know where such an opportunity may lead you!"

Find out more and apply by 19 October here