Minnesota Law

Summer 2021

Summer Experiences: Rising 2L Samia Osman, Summer Associate at Ballard Spahr

Rising 2L Samia Osman spent the summer working for the Minneapolis office of Ballard Spahr, a national law firm with more than 650 attorneys in 15 offices. She also had the opportunity to work remotely with other offices of the firm, including New York City and Philadelphia.

How did you connect with this summer opportunity?

I applied to Ballard through the Twin Cities Diversity in Practice program.


How does your experience connect with what you currently envision doing with your law degree?

I wanted to explore the different areas of law that I was interested but didn't really know anything about. My time at Ballard really helped me understand those practice areas and industries by giving me substantial assignments. My time with Ballard also helped me figure whether I wanted to do litigation or transactional work. 


Please describe a “typical” workday on the job.

I would come into work around 9:00 or 10:00 am and would usually have either a research assignment waiting for me or I would have to go pick one out. Afterwards, my day was spent between meetings and doing my assignment. Sometimes we would have summer associate activities planned and would participate in those either after work or during the lunch hour. I would usually leave by 5:00 p.m.


What is something you learned or experienced that was surprising or particularly compelling during this summer position?

I was involved in some work regarding the Jan. 6 riots and the public’s right to know the proceedings. I also  attended hearings on the first amendment in those cases. But my favorite thing is that I was able to work with different offices such as the New York City and Philadelphia offices even though I was based in Minnesota.


What are a couple of your key takeaways from the experience?

· I learned that litigation was more for me than transactional.

· I also learned that working with a great mentor can make anything interesting and worthwhile project.


How has your summer experience compared with your expectations? 

Working for a big firm wasn't what I expected in regard to the environment. They were welcoming and encouraged my many questions. I really enjoyed myself and learned a lot even though we weren't in-person.

“Working for a big firm wasn’t what I expected in regard to the environment. They were welcoming and encouraged my many questions.”
Rising 2L Samia Osman


What advice would you offer another law student thinking about working in a similar position next summer?

Be open and willing to engage with the partners but also keep any plans/thoughts you may have regarding your career or the place you're working to yourself even if asked out right.


How are you spending your free time this summer?

Hanging out with friends, reading, and exploring the city.


What are you most looking forward to in returning to Minnesota Law this fall?

In-person classes!!!