Summer Associate Program
Summer Associate Program 2022 applications are closed. Please check back in July 2022 to submit applications for Summer Associate Program 2023.
Our Summer Associates work within the Veterans Law practice assisting veterans and their families with their claims for VA disability benefits. The primary emphasis of the program is on appellate-level representation before the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and includes document review, legal research, and legal writing. CCK looks for individuals who are genuinely interested in working on behalf of disabled armed service veterans. We seek individuals who are capable of working independently, but who can also work cooperatively with others in a collegial, team-focused environment. The Summer Associate position is a 10-week, paid program with the potential for a full-time employment offer.
Weekly salary is $1,400.
Life as a CCK Summer Associate
CCK Summer Associates are regarded, treated and compensated like starting attorneys. Each associate is assigned a small case load and learns our process from start to finish –reviewing records, doing legal research, drafting memos, and eventually writing a brief. Summer Associates are integrated members of the team and thus attend team meetings, as well as trainings on different areas of the law, new legal precedent, and legal writing tips.
Meet a Few of CCK’s Past Summer Associates!
Zachary Mills, Summer 2021
Candidate for Juris Doctor, May 2022, Penn State Law, University Park, PA
Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
Zachary’s experience as a CCK Summer Associate:
“CCK’s summer associate program provided me with invaluable experience in the field of VA law. I received in-depth trainings, weekly check-ins from partners and senior attorneys, and one-on-one mentorship from a supervising attorney who reviewed and provided feedback on all of my work. With these tremendous resources at my disposal, I felt well prepared to tackle the real-life client-work CCK assigned to me. During my time in the program, I managed my own caseload, researched and wrote my own briefs, and even attended settlement conferences with VA’s Office of General Counsel. My summer with CCK not only prepared me for my final year of law school but enabled me to grow as a legal professional. I now have the tools needed to be a successful practicing attorney.”
“Thank you to everyone at CCK for a fantastic and informative summer. For anyone interested in the field of VA law, I highly recommend applying to CCK’s summer associate program – you will not regret it!”
Jordan Broadbent, Summer 2020
Candidate for Juris Doctor, May 2021, Syracuse University College of Law.
Bachelor’s in political science, University of Rhode Island, Kingstown, RI.
Jordan’s experience as a CCK Summer Associate:
“I worked as a summer associate at CCK after my second year of law school. Prior to CCK, I was a student attorney at the Syracuse University College of Law’s Veteran clinic. I started as interested in Veterans law and the 10-week program taught me more about Veterans law, how to be a better writer, and more about administrative law. The program, especially the first two weeks, is filled with trainings in Veterans law and it involves learning from the best of the best. All the attorneys and staff that work at CCK go out of their way to create a great summer program that includes trainings, weekly check-ins, and mentorship opportunities.”
“During my time here, I was able to write and file several briefs, watch oral argument preparation and moots, and write and file several memos. My legal writing and research skills greatly improved during my time here. I am excited to take these experiences back for my final year of law school.”
“This is a great program to learn Veterans law, to practice public interest law in a firm environment, and to get great hands-on legal experience. CCK makes their summer associates feel part of a team from day one. It is a great place to work!”
Lucas Sylvia, Summer 2020
Lucas’s experience as a CCK Summer Associate:
“My time as a Summer Associate was eye-opening and gave me a small snapshot of what being an attorney in VA law is like day-to-day. Before I made the jump to law school, I worked in another part of the firm as a Paralegal. While I was aware of the “Court Side” of the practice, I rarely had an opportunity to see what it was like to be an attorney in VA law. After my first year in school, I spent a summer interning with Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson from the First Circuit Court of Appeals. While that internship gave me an appreciation for how the federal court system works on a macro level, working at CCK provided me with a glimpse of how the federal government on a micro level within one administrative agency, VA. I truly felt and was treated as part of the ever-growing team. It goes without saying that everyone I interacted with was patient, kind, and knowledgeable, particularly in light of our COVID-19 world. I worked hands-on with a senior attorney on each memorandum and brief, often exchanging multiple drafts until I (hopefully) figured it out. While the appeals process is too slow to allow someone entering into the program to see a case from start to finish, the firm gave me a good taste of what case management is like by giving me assignments from different points along the litigation timeline.”
“All in all, I found it to be a great experience. The firm strikes a good balance between not only supporting you when you have questions but also making sure that the responsibility is on your shoulders. It was refreshing to know that the people our team was advocating for were real – not some hypothetical created by a law school professor. Further, almost every written piece of work I completed was either reviewed by an attorney, with the VA, or would eventually go before a judge. The sense of fulfillment that I received when I won my first few cases is hard to describe. Because of the SA program, I feel better prepared to finish up my last year of law school and return to the working world.”
“I will be starting my third year of law school, remotely, at Roger Williams University School of Law.”
Sam Agostini, Summer 2018
Candidate for Juris Doctor, May 2019, Boston College Law School, Newton, MA
Bachelor of Arts, Stonehill College, Easton, MA
Sam’s experience as a CCK Summer Associate:
“I had the privilege of being a summer associate at CCK during the summer of 2018. CCK provided me with countless opportunities to enhance my legal research and writing skills. I drafted briefs and memoranda on a variety of disability issues. During that process, I had the pleasure of working with fantastic attorneys who were always willing to assist me. They were always patient and supportive, and I cannot thank them enough for that. CCK also provided great opportunities to get to know the members of the firm outside of the office through CCK Day in Newport and the Providence Downtown 5K.”
“My ten weeks at CCK made me a better writer, researcher, and advocate. I could not have asked for a better place to spend my 2L summer, and I am very excited to return after I graduate. Following this experience, I feel much more prepared for my future legal career, and I owe it all to CCK.”
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What is it like working remotely as a Summer Associate at CCK?
- CCK works to ensure employees are comfortable and remain connected with colleagues while working remotely. Coming into a Summer program as a new Associate can be nerve wracking, especially in a remote capacity. However, the supportive and collaborative environment throughout the firm are crucial to the success of the Summer Associate Program. Employees are able to stay connected with virtual chats, video meetings and even games such as monthly trivia! Although it is unclear what the program will look like next Summer, CCK is prepared for both remote or in office programs to be successful.
- What are some of the day-to-day tasks and responsibilities of a CCK Summer Associate?
- Day-to-day responsibilities of a Summer Associate include: reviewing clients’ medical records to gather evidence for their disability claim, drafting memos to submit to opposing counsel for out-of-court settlement negotiations, drafting briefs on client matters that opposing counsel does not negotiate, submitting online appeal filings, and attending all-team meetings and trainings.
- Will I receive training on Veterans Law and CCK’s legal process?
- Yes! The first two weeks of the summer consist of various training sessions to help prepare you for any work you encounter. These sessions are often conducted by other attorneys in the firm that you will interact with on a daily basis.
- Will I be interacting with clients?
- Not directly, but you will interact with opposing counsel and mediation attorneys to negotiate settlements based on memos you draft.
- Will I start handling client matters immediately?
- Yes. Within your first week you will be assigned a case to research and work. The workload starts off at a steady pace so you can learn hands-on with the support of your team, then quickly progresses to keep you busy and engaged.
- How often do summer associates interact with attorneys?
- CCK attorneys support summer associates throughout the summer. Our goal is to foster an environment that encourages our Summer Associates to ask questions, push themselves, and truly feel like a member of our Veterans Law practice group.
- Will my work be reviewed by other attorneys?
- Yes. In the first week, you will be assigned one or more supervising attorneys who will be your primary person(s) of contact throughout the summer. They will help you manage your workload and answering any questions you have.
- How are cases assigned to summer associates?
- Team leadership determines which cases need the most assistance. We also welcome input from our Summer Associates as to which types of cases interest them the most.
- What sets CCK’s Summer Associate Program apart from similar programs at other law firms?
- At CCK, we aim to keep our Summer Associate program small so we can provide individualized guidance and mentorship to our Summer Associates. A smaller number of Summer Associates ensures that each person has ample opportunity to work closely with experienced attorneys and receive personal feedback on all of their work.
- Is there anything I should do to prepare for my time as a summer associate with CCK? Ex. Readings, Research, etc.
- Yes! To prepare for your summer with CCK, we will provide a list of reading materials before your arrival which include relevant VA case law and articles. In addition, we recommend reading articles from our blog and watching the videos found in the resource library on the CCK website. Prior to your start dated, we will communicate a calendar of events, send monthly newsletters about life at CCK, and the form we need you to complete to be admitted to the CAVC as a non-attorney practitioner.
- If I re-locate or commute to Providence for the summer, what is it like living in this city and what are some things to do in the area?
- Rhode Island may be the smallest state, but it has so much to offer that you will fall in love with the area in no time! Poised at the head of Narragansett Bay, the small city of Providence is both historical and trendsetting. You can experience an affordable urban lifestyle while also having access to local sandy beaches and vibrant New England nature within close proximity – no need to drive for hours!
- Learn more and stay up to date with all things Providence at Go Providence.