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2015 Summer LEADS Program

We are now accepting applications for 1L students for our 2015 Summer Program.

2015 LEADS Program Application

Completed and signed applications and all required supporting documentation should be received by January 9, 2015 for 1L students. Please note that applications will be reviewed and applicants interviewed and selected on a rolling basis so submit your application as early as possible.


Amy Moor Gaylord
LEADS Fellowship Coordinator

The Franczek Radelet "LEADS" Fellowship Program

Franczek Radelet's Legal Education for the Advancement of Diversity and Scholarship (LEADS) Fellowship Program is an exciting and creative diversity pipeline initiative that we believe to be unprecedented in terms of its focus and structure.

The LEADS eight-week summer program is designed for diverse first and second year law students with an interest in pursuing a legal career in private practice representing employers in labor and employment matters.  The goal of the program is to provide concentrated labor and employment legal experience while developing a pipeline of highly qualified, diverse candidates for future employment in the legal profession.

2014 LEADS Fellows

Franczek Radelet welcomes Susan Esquivel and Nicholas Simpson for eight weeks in the summer as part of the LEADS 2014 Summer Program. We also are welcoming back Kent Sparks from the 2013 LEADS Program for a shortened program assignment.

Susan Esquivel, a 1L at University of Notre Dame Law School, is co-president of the Hispanic Law Students Association, founding co-president of the Education Law Forum, and a member of the Women’s Legal Forum and the Public Interest Law Forum. She earned her B.A. in political science with minor in Latino Studies from the University of Notre Dame. From August 2012 to September 2013, Susan was an Americorps Member serving as a Youth Programs Coordinator at Robinson Community Learning Center in South Bend, Indiana.

Nicholas Simpson is a 1L at DePaul University College of Law where he is a member of the Black Law Students Association (BLSA) and its mock trial team. He earned his B.A. in political science from Southern Illinois University. Nicholas spent last summer in Washington, DC as an intern at the National Urban League Policy Institute. He founded Young Forever, a partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters and Iota Phi Theta Fraternity Inc. focused on mentoring and tutoring first through eighth graders in Carbondale middle schools. 

Kent Sparks, a returning LEADS Fellow from the 2013 LEADS class of Fellows, is a 2L student at Michigan State University College of Law. He earned his B.A. in education, with high distinction, from the University of Michigan and obtained his Michigan Teaching Certification in Secondary Education: Social Studies and Earth/Space Science. Kent was elected to the board of education for the Whitmore Lake Public Schools and nominated by board colleagues to serve as board president in 2012. As a school board member, he worked to draft and set district policy, adopt an annual operating budget, and oversee the superintendent’s performance.

The LEADS Curriculum

This program, unlike most traditional law firm summer associate programs, will include specific learning and experience modules for the LEADS Fellows during an eight week fellowship period.  The curriculum will combine substantive legal experience with practical training provided by Franczek Radelet attorneys.  LEADS Fellows will also receive an orientation to the business of practicing law, with a focus on transitioning from the life as a law student to that of a private practice attorney. 

With each Fellow assigned to a small group of Franczek Radelet attorneys, Fellows will also learn first-hand the work and demands associated with being a practicing labor and employment attorney.  Work experience will include substantive exposure to real time labor, employment, litigation and employee benefits issues facing employers.  The Firm will also be soliciting participation by Firm clients so that Fellows may have an opportunity to spend part of the eight-week program working with an in-house legal or human resources department.

The Firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Commitment

Franczek Radelet values highly the varied perspectives and experiences which are found only in a diverse workplace. As a Firm, we define diversity as inclusion of employees of different race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, cultural and ethnic background, ability, nationality and other unique attributes that do not interfere with effective job performance and superior client service.