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Pro Bono Program Skills Inventory

Over the course of a year Pro Bono Board members conducted a skills evaluation of each project and service offered under the umbrella of the Pro Bono Program. The results of this task have now been collated and organized into this Pro Bono Skills Inventory.

Each Core Skill has a number of particular actions that might be honed and improved through volunteering with a Pro Bono Program project. All projects have skills opportunities but not all skills are the focus of every project.

When students are considering engaging with the Pro Bono Program they will now have the opportunity to relate their activities performed with the skills they need to prosper and become successful, competent and happy attorneys.

Core Skill: Oral Communication and Listening Abilities

  • Communication
  • Oral expression
  • Public speaking
  • Formulating questions
  • Asking follow up questions
  • Thinking and speaking simultaneously
  • Reading comprehension
  • Listening, attentiveness
  • Mediation
  • Arbitration
  • Negotiating
  • Collaboration
  • Team building
  • Team dynamics
  • Personal and personnel motivation

Core Skill: Writing Skills

  • Writing
  • Drafting legal documents
  • Note taking and organizing files
  • Report writing

Core Skill: General Research skills

  • Learning the scope of the rule of law
  • Learning how to apply the law to the facts
  • Understanding judicial opinions
  • Relating judicial opinions to new facts
  • Writing persuasively

Core Skill: Critical Reading Abilities

  • Ability to concentrate
  • Understanding facts
  • Separating fact from fiction
  • Understanding a legal doctrine
  • Understanding the choices of law
  • Applying multiples levels of law-federal, state and local

Core Skill: Task Organization and Management

  • Logical thinking
  • Organizing ideas
  • Strategy development and implementation
  • Figuring out the issues, pros and cons
  • Problem identification
  • Problem solving
  • Thoroughness and attention to detail
  • Creativity, imagination
  • Meeting management and planning
  • Record keeping
  • Record organization
  • Monitoring plans
  • Understanding the economic impact of a law
  • Coordinating projects
  • Team management
  • Deadline management
  • Leadership styles
  • Task completion
  • Report writing/presentation
  • Case file organization
  • Investigation
  • Marketing
  • Community relations
  • Developing presentation material

Core Skill: Professionalism

  • Judgment, common sense
  • Time management and planning
  • Professional presentations
  • Understanding how non-law issues affect facts and outcomes
  • Understanding the emotional impact of a law
  • Understanding persuasion
  • Ability to analyze ethical considerations raised and not raised
  • Compassion
  • Sensitivity to ethical dilemmas
  • Sensitivity to ethical constraints
  • Sensitivity to diverse client populations
  • Empathy for diverse clients
  • Understanding legal advise versus legal opinion
  • Applying ethics to decision making
  • Understanding of role of lawyer in society
  • Knowledge of pro bono services available
  • Independent decision making
  • Building and maintaining relationships
  • Networking