The Harrisburg Women’s Law Caucus
held a special panel on Wednesday, March 21st on Non-Traditional Legal Career Pathways. The event aimed to help students start thinking outside the box in how they approach legal careers. The event took place in room L204 beginning at 5 p.m.
The panel members discussed the varied and interesting paths that led them to their non-traditional careers and provided some insight into how they became successful. The esteemed panel members included Kenya Faulkner, Esq, who was the Inspector General of the Commonwealth; Carolyn Thompson, Esq, Court Administrator for Dauphin County Courts; Dianne Nichols, Esq, Chief Counsel for the House of Representatives Professional Licensure Committee; and Charlene Couch, Esq, Director of the Bureau of Equal Employment Opportunity for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Director of Career Development Karen Durkin
served as moderator and facilitated the panel discussion by asking questions of the panelists such as what barriers to their individual career growth they may have encountered.
Ms. Nichols said that the barrier she encountered was not having a mentor. She was only one of seventeen women in her law school class, and she had to figure out everything on her own. She did not receive the advice she wanted to hear and felt that it was more difficult for her to get where she wanted to be in her career.
Ms. Falkner touched on a tough time in her career where another co-worker received a promotion before her and she was beside herself about it because she had been working there longer and producing better work. When she approached her employer and asked why she didn’t get the promotion, he replied that he was sorry, but that the other person had asked to be promoted. She recommended to the students that they ask for what they want.
After the program was completed, Durkin stated she was delighted to have partnered with the Women’s Law Caucus. “In sharing their own experiences with the audience, each of these engaging speakers encouraged the students to ‘think outside the box’ throughout their careers. Their long, satisfying and successful careers offer guidance to all students entering the job market today. “
Kathleen Long, President of the Women’s Law Caucus, thought the program was a huge success, saying, “All four panelists did a phenomenal job conveying how getting a law degree doesn't necessarily mean you have to be in a courtroom or write memos. When our job economy is in a state like it is now, the information the four women provided is extremely beneficial to upcoming graduates. The Women's Law Caucus was very pleased with the event!”