2017_Summer_Assoicates_GroupYesterday, we welcomed the 2017 Summer Associates (and bloggers!) to Bilzin Sumberg.  I’m excited to welcome back Hannah and Lauren and introduce to you Alex, Forrest, Eric and Luis.  Throughout the course of the summer, you’ll have the opportunity to hear from them about their experience at Bilzin Sumberg – from work assignments, tag alongs, training and mentors to social events.

We have a lot planned and we are all looking forward to next couple of months together!

The time for my final summer blog post has come. I know… try to hold back your tears (regardless of whether they are tears of joy or sadness). I’ve decided to take this time to share a few tips regarding how to make the most of your time as a Summer Associate at Bilzin Sumberg:

Continue Reading Five Survival Tips for the Summer Associate

As Summer Associates at Bilzin Sumberg, we have been blessed with both an innocuous and nurturing work environment. At times, the legal questions we face can be more overwhelming than the near-lethal scent of the Axe/ Drakkar Noir body spray cocktail that Geoff bathes himself in after the firm-wide yoga classes, and we are lucky to be able to turn to our mentors for guidance (Shout-outs to Craig, Naomi, Phil, Veronica, Mildred, Carly, and Brandon). Thankfully, all of the mentors abide by the policy that “no question is a dumb question”. (Unless you are asking who got the highest score on the July 2015 Florida Bar Exam.)

Our mentors have been especially helpful in navigating the plethora of hearty assignments placed on our metaphorical plates. Every day we are presented with brand new opportunities to practice in unique areas of the law (even though Lauren’s calling might actually be professional poker) . Our assignment pool spans the legal landscape and work is constantly rolling in from partners in Litigation, Land Use, Corporate, Real Estate, Business Finance and Restructuring, and Tax. This variety has motivated and energized us throughout the daily grind (picture this, not this). Although a great deal of our work involves billable assignments incorporating serious client interaction and written work-product, that is not all we have taken on this summer.

Continue Reading Drakkar Noir, Pugs, and Madonna: A Must-Read

Still life of a fly rod in a boat

Between assignments and events, I soon found myself in week 5 of the summer associate program at Bilzin Sumberg. Along with week 5 came the highly anticipated Rosa Mexicano summer associate lunch in the wonderful company of Mitch Widom, Jessica Buchsbaum, and the litigation associates. After hearing plenty of stories from alumni about this lunch, my fellow summer associates and I knew exactly what to expect–Mitch would order us margaritas, and we would love them.

Over tasty guacamole later, Mitch regaled us with stories about his fishing adventures in Alaska and made me even more excited about our awaited fishing trip. While Mitch’s wife broke fishing records on their trip to Alaska, I’ll settle for a catch hefty enough to cook for dinner post-fishing.

I was especially blown away by Mitch’s ability to turn his passion for fishing into the Keymorada Invitational Fly-Spin Tournament. The tournament’s proceeds go to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America and the UM Crohn’s & Colitis Center. Bilzin Sumberg’s devotion to the well-being of its community continues to inspire me everyday.

Dessert cart 1It was officially the second week of our Summer Associate Program, and our first fieldtrip was on the horizon–the Marlins Park tour and game, organized by the Land Use Practice. While Jerry, Jared, and Leah are renowned for their coordinating abilities (matching Clambake outfits), our class is well on its way to dethrone them. We met at 5:30 P.M. sharp (sort of), and four brave souls banked on me getting them safely to the ballpark (already taking heart in light of the upcoming Poker Tournament).

A couple of wrong turns and attempts at parking later, we made our way to the park entrance. “Not so soon,” said the universe, as Frankie realized he had left his ticket at the office. If you have known Frankie for approximately a week, you are more than confident in his ability to finesse his way through impromptu interviewing, subleasing gone wrong, and just about anything else. To no surprise, Frankie soon joined us on the Marlins Park tour, precisely in time to get a glimpse of the Clevelander pool area. Continue Reading Take Me Out to the Dessert Cart

Our 2017 Summer Associates at Orientation!
Our 2016 Summer Associates at Orientation!

We are excited to welcome our 2016 Summer Associates!  Today, they participated in orientation, computer training and will be ready to begin working (and blogging!) soon.  We have a robust summer planned and know that they will have the opportunity to learn a lot and develop strong relationships this summer.

Check back weekly to follow their summer experience at Bilzin Sumberg.



The summer associates at their farewell ice cream social.
The summer associates at their farewell ice cream social.

Last Friday was the last day of the summer program!  We are thankful to our summer class for their commitment and effort.  It is our hope that we honored our commitment to them: a real-world experience and constructive feedback.  Along the way, we are confident they grew professionally and personally and developed strong relationships with our attorneys – and each other.

Thanks Jennifer, Jessica, Camille, Anthony & Brendan!  It was a pleasure!  On-campus interviewing is officially underway and we are excited to begin meeting next year’s bloggers.

Flashback to the first day of the summer program!
Flashback to the first day of the summer program!



Playing "Heads Up" with First Tee participants during a rain delay.
Playing “Heads Up” with First Tee participants during a rain delay.

Getting toward the end of the Summer Associate program, we are all amazed at how quickly our time here has gone by. In addition to the interesting assignments and fun social events, the Summer Associates had a great opportunity this week to spend some time with college-bound students at the First Tee golf event. The First Tee is an educational program, involving golf instruction, for young students to learn and develop strong traits.  The firm came to know about this wonderful organization from Carlos Rodriguez at First American Title Insurance – a company that works frequently with our real estate attorneys.

We started our day off with a quick tour of the golf course and facilities. With the gracious donations of some sponsors, the organization has brand new buildings and golf equipment for the campers–it’s no surprise that the campers look forward to their summers there. Following the tour, we were introduced to the campers. They were excited to meet us and hear about what it’s like to work in the legal field and attend law school at the University of Miami School of Law. We also enjoyed learning about their educational experiences up to this point. Some campers are in the middle of their college search and asked for advice on how to narrow down their choices and find a school that is the right fit. Overall, it was rewarding to speak with these bright, young students and provide some insight on how we have approached our short-term and long-term goals.

Following our morning at the First Tee, the Summer Associates headed back to the office to tie up some loose ends on a few of our assignments. Follow our mid-summer reviews, the five of us have been able to narrow down our interests a bit and focus our work on certain practice areas. It was definitely beneficial to try an assignment in each practice group along the way to see what type of work would be a good fit for each of us.

In preparation for our 2013 Summer Associate program, we’ve been working on a project that will be a useful tool for our incoming summer classes.  This project quotes anonymous evaluations of previous summer associates by Bilzin attorneys over the last few years and is broken down by topic.  These topics include attitude, time management, preparation & organization, attention to detail, communication, writing and oral presentation.  This chart of “The Do’s & Don’ts of a Successful Summer” will provide a glimpse of what the attorneys like and don’t like in terms of the topics listed above.  However, it does not include “off the record” type tips like the ones listed below.

  1. Stay current with firm news – read the posts on the firm website, firm blogs and any news on the firm intranet.  It’s always good to know what’s going on around you and this helps with conversation topics as well!  It also helps to read the local newspaper to see if any attorneys are quoted or to have a few cocktail reception talking points of interest.
  2. Get Involved – Get to know all levels of attorneys and staff  where you spent your summer, participate in all offered events as well as events with your mentors and fellow summer associates.
  3. Be Well-Rounded – Try to not be too much of anything and be open-minded about practice areas and assignment types, don’t shy away from something because you don’t know how to do it.
  4. Immerse yourself in the Magic City – Don’t just learn about the firm’s or organization’s culture; learn about the Miami culture too.  Go to different neighborhoods and try doing fun things outside of work that aren’t already part of your awesome summer event lineup!
  5. And last but not least, genuinely care about your summer – If you care about your job, it will show in your work product and people will notice.

We are so excited to welcome our new summer class within a month! Our team has prepared what will undoubtedly be a memorable 9 weeks of summer at Bilzin and we are looking forward to a very successful summer.

We are excited to have concluded our recruiting for the 2013 Summer Associates and are looking forward to another great summer.  The future bloggers (aka, our incoming summer associates) are:

We’ve settled on the date for the start of the summer program in June and have encouraged the summer class to get in touch with each other; hopefully, they’ll have the opportunity to get to know each other before the summer starts.

Now that we’ve concluded our summer recruiting, we can focus on building the summer programming and thinking about mentors.