University of Denver

DLA Piper’s Mark Nadeau on Legal Education: “There's a gap that has occurred in our profession”

Former Senior Director

Mark Nadeau is a member of the Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers Advisory Committee and the co-managing partner of the Phoenix office of DLA Piper, one of the largest law firms in the world.

He recently took some time to talk with us about new lawyers, hiring needs, and legal education, including the limitations of “thinking like a lawyer.”

"There’s a gap that has occurred in our profession and that is that while students are taught to think like lawyers they have very little to offer in terms of tangible evidence of their ability to perform in a law firm or in a government position… If a law firm or industry is looking for an apprentice—and they all are, we all are—you need a bridge to build upon. And if all you can offer to us is that you think like a lawyer, you’re a long way from being somebody we’re interested in actually spending the time in to train to do the kind of work we now do."

But Nadeau is optimistic about the unique role Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers plays in addressing the challenges facing legal education today.

"This is the seminal place in the country right now engaged with trying to provide a remedy—trying to move it up one notch. And there is no other program going on like this… here, at this facility in Denver, is an effort going on amongst a consortium of law schools to fix a readily apparent problem."


View the rest of Mark’s interview with Educating Tomorrow’s Lawyers.