1L Life Sciences Summit

Launch Your Career Path
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The Wilson Sonsini 1L Life Sciences Summit was exactly what I had been looking for and needed for my career. I have always been seeking a way to use the knowledge garnered from my pervious background in genetics research to inform my legal practice and attending this conference gave me the answers I needed to shape my career.

Helen Li, Duke Law School, 2023 Life Sciences Scholar
Two male attorneys with backs to the camera talking with smiling female Life Sciences Scholar at welcome reception.
Life Sciences Summit Scholars get to know each other and our attorneys at the Welcome Reception in our Boston office.

Sign up here to be notified when applications are available for the 2025 1L Life Sciences Summit!

Are you a 1L with a science background? Have you been wondering how your interest in science might connect with a legal practice? If so, we created our 1L Life Sciences Summit just for people like you! The Summit will give you an introduction early in your legal career to what the life sciences industry looks like, the many ways in which a legal practice can intersect with the life sciences, and how you can leverage your interest and background in the life sciences in your future career.

Life sciences is a broad category encompassing a wide variety of disciplines including biological sciences, chemistry, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and healthcare. Wilson Sonsini has one of the largest life sciences practices in the United States, and we are the premier legal services provider to thousands of life sciences enterprises around the world. Our clients range from bleeding-edge start-ups at the very beginning of their growth to some of the world’s largest and most established companies which have been at the forefront of innovation for decades.

This has been an amazing opportunity to meet new friends, learn about the intersection between law and science, and get an in-depth look at what a career in each practice group looks like. All of the lawyers at Wilson were so gracious and willing to give advice on how to pursue an exciting, meaningful career.

Stacey Lee, University of California-Irvine School of Law, 2023 Life Sciences Scholar
Large room with Life Sciences Scholars listening to panel presentation.
1L Life Sciences Summit Scholars listen to a panel discussion with three attorneys from the Antitrust Life Sciences practice group.

This focus and experience makes us uniquely well-suited to introduce you to attorneys in such practice areas as Patents & Innovations, Patent Litigation, Technology Transactions, Corporate Life Sciences, and Antitrust Life Sciences and offer an in-depth look at their practices. Our deep experience also allows us to provide the opportunity for you to hear from some of our clients, who share stories of their careers, their company’s business journeys, and how they have worked with Wilson Sonsini.

The Summit also includes important opportunities for you to practice networking, both with the Wilson Sonsini attorneys and clients who will join us for meals and receptions, but also with a cohort of 1Ls from around the country who share an interest in a life sciences law practice. No matter where you end up beginning your career, these relationships will provide a foundation for your future network. And in addition to all the interesting panels and conversations, we also build in ample opportunities for good food and good conversation.

At our first 1L Life Sciences Summit in 2023, we welcomed 36 Scholars from 19 law schools around the country. That Summit included deep dives with five different Wilson Sonsini practice groups, conversations with representatives from three clients from different parts of the life sciences industry, a networking lunch with our affinity group Women of Wilson, and a highly energetic “Ask Me Anything about Life Sciences @ Wilson” panel with six attorneys from different practice groups. 

Group photo of Life Sciences scholars outdoors with Boston skyline in the background.
Our 2023 Life Sciences Summit Scholars.

The end of our Summit is just the beginning of our relationship with you. Each Life Sciences Summit Scholar is matched with an attorney mentor, and you will be invited to participate in virtual events throughout the rest of your 1L year, including trainings on building your brand, networking, refining your resume, and interviewing. And, of course, we hope all of our Summit Scholars will be excited about a pursing a career at Wilson Sonsini, and we’ll make sure you are aware of all the dates and processes for our interview programs.

The 1L Life Sciences Summit is entirely free of charge to attend—travel and reasonable related expenses for the students selected to attend will be covered by Wilson Sonsini in accordance with our travel policies. First-year law students enrolled at ABA-accredited law schools are eligible to apply. Pre-law students with life sciences backgrounds who have been admitted to ABA-accredited law schools will also be considered. Each year, we open applications in early December (watch our website and social media for details) for a Life Sciences Summit in early Spring. When the application is open, it will be linked from this page.

Sign up here to be notified when applications are available for the 2025 1L Life Sciences Summit!

View Points
Mark W. Bellomy
Technology Transactions

All firms look the same from the outside. You need to look at the people and the focus. Look at what drives the firm and see if that is the direction you want to go. If there’s a solid practice within the firm, but it’s not the broader direction the firm is going, it won’t be served over the long term. Look for the firm-wide direction and see if it aligns with your goals.

Sample 1L Life Sciences Summit Agenda

Day One:

6:00-6:45 pm             Welcome Remarks and Client Speaker

6:45-8:45 pm             Welcome Reception

Day Two:

8:00-9:00 am             Breakfast and Welcome Address

9:00-9:45 am             Introduction and Client Speaker

9:50-10:35 am            Corporate Life Sciences: The Art of the Financial Deal

10:40-11:25 am            Patents & Innovations: It’s Technical, But So Much More

11:25 am–12:25 pm    Women’s History Month Intro and Women of Wilson Networking Lunch

12:25-1:10 pm             Technology Transactions – Biotech: What’s the (Business) Deal?

1:15-2:00 pm              Patent Litigation: Life Science Advocates

2:05-2:50 pm             Antitrust Life Sciences: Navigating Competition in Innovative Industries

2:50-3:35 pm             Introduction & Client Speaker:

3:45-4:50 pm             Life Sciences @ Wilson: Ask Me Anything!

4:50-5:00 pm            Closing Remarks

Six attorneys on a panel with audience in the foreground.
The highlight of the Summit presentations is the lively “Life Sciences @ Wilson Ask Me Anything” panel with six attorneys, each from a different practice group.