UC Berkeley School of Law launches leadership program for lawyers

Berkeley Law Executive Education/Courtesy

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UC Berkeley School of Law and the Minerva Project launched Leadership in the Legal Profession, a 10-week management and training program for legal professionals that will begin its first class May 5.

The Minerva Project is an organization that partners with other educational institutions to offer courses in executive education, according to the Minerva Project website.  The project uses a platform called Forum to provide interactive online learning, according to the course’s instructor Mike Ross.

The course aims to educate lawyers on how to better interact with clients and people, according to Adam Sterling, Berkeley Center for Law and Business executive director. Ross said the program will also help legal professionals develop skills including leadership, empathy and overcoming cognitive bias.

“Participants will explore practical tools to manage uncertainty and transitions, develop and build effective and adaptable teams, and tackle business challenges using divergent thinking via a systems approach,” said Gloria Tam, Minerva associate dean of professional learning and development, in a Berkeley Law press release.

The course is designed for senior attorneys and lawyers, generally with at least five years of experience, according to Sterling. Ross added that people in the program will be able to apply the skills they learn to their jobs.

Ross said although the course is online, it will allow students to engage with one another. He added that the platform is “very effective” and received positive results during the program’s pilot in 2019.

Despite having 400 applicants, the first class will be capped at 20 people, according to Sterling. He added that Berkeley Law hopes to expand the course to junior attorneys and undergraduate students.

“We have learners from all over, including the U.S. and in Argentina,” Sterling said. “It makes it more accessible. It can be difficult to travel to Berkeley once a week for 10 weeks.”


Contact Gigi Nibbelink and Maya Akkaraju at [email protected].