U.S. Educational Pipeline
Through a variety of extracurricular and educational programs, Cleary attorneys and staff members mentor, train, and support students to cultivate meaningful relationships with legal professionals; expand their professional networks; develop valuable academic, professional, and social skills; and gain confidence in themselves, their work, and their futures.
Every summer, Cleary hosts a select group of student interns in the Legal Outreach program for a week of legal research, contract negotiation, brief writing, and litigation training.
Washington Irving Campus Program
The Cleary Gottlieb Washington Irving Campus Partnership Programs seek to close the opportunity gap by equipping traditionally underrepresented students with the learning experiences and tools needed to excel as students in higher education, as professionals in the workplace, and as leaders in the community.
Over 30 Years of Service
Cleary first partnered with Washington Irving High School in 1991 to improve outcomes for underserved public high school students. In its beginning days, the partnership primarily focused on SAT tutoring because standardized testing was viewed as one of the main barriers for underrepresented students in accessing social mobility. Since then, the partnership, now referred to as the Washington Irving Campus (WIC), has grown significantly both with respect to the number of individuals impacted and the range of services offered.
Where We Work
The campus has evolved from a single high school to five independent high schools sharing the same building at 40 Irving Place in Manhattan:
- Gramercy Arts High School (GAHS) became an independent school from Washington Irving in 2008 and focuses on visual and performing arts
- High School for Language and Diplomacy (LAD) opened in 2009 and focuses on language and diplomacy
- International High School (IHS) opened in 2010 and enrolls students who have lived in the United States for four years or less
- Academy for Software Engineering (AFSE) opened in 2011 and focuses on software engineering and STEM subjects
- Union Square Academy for Health Sciences (USA) also opened in 2011 and focuses on preparing students for pharmaceutical and dental technician certifications
What We Offer
College Admissions Coaching
The College Admissions Coaching program supports high school juniors and seniors through various aspects of the college application process. The curriculum follows a college planning calendar that includes college essay writing, information sessions with admissions representatives, admission applications, scholarship essays, financial aid, and professional skill development. Cleary volunteers support sessions or workshops by conducting mock interviews, editing college essays, and helping students create resumes.
Cleary sponsors two SAT prep sessions each year: a three-week refresher course for seniors in the fall and a twelve-week course for juniors in the spring. Volunteers co-teach classes of approximately 15 students. The math and reading/writing sections are covered in separate 90-minute sessions, and volunteers may choose to teach either or both subject areas. Curricula, textbooks, handouts, and basic teaching orientation are provided.
Cleary mentors are paired one-on-one with high school mentees and spend at least four hours per month together. Prior to being matched with a student, mentors are required to submit an application and attend training at the start of the school year. Cleary hosts monthly events (including team-building activities, workshops, and college support sessions) for all mentor-mentee pairs to participate in together.
The Mock Trial program runs in partnership with the New York Bar Association and Justice Resource Center, which bring high school students from all five boroughs together to compete in simulated civil and criminal cases. Mock Trial students prepare to defend both sides of a given case by presenting opening and closing statements, conducting direct and cross examinations, and playing the role of witnesses. At the culminating tournament, high school teams compete in front of judges at the Manhattan and Brooklyn courts.
Composed of students and Cleary volunteers, the book club reads a new book each month and meets weekly to explore various topics and themes. In between books, the club holds spotlight weeks to discuss current events, college readiness, and heritage months.
Exceptional high school sophomores and juniors are hired to intern at Cleary across a number of departments. The program has had up to 13 interns at a time working in Alumni Relations, Corporate Resources, Document Support, Help Desk, Mail/Messengers, and Audio Visual Support.
Learn more about Cleary’s pro bono practice here.