AABANY Student Outreach and Bankruptcy Committees Co-Hosted Successful “What Do Bankruptcy Lawyers Do?” Panel on February 11

The Student Outreach and Bankruptcy Committees co-hosted a panel titled “What Do Bankruptcy Lawyers Do?” on February 11, 2021 as part of the SOC’s Students Meet Mentors series. William Lee, Associate at Alston & Bird, moderated the panel and speakers included William Hao, Counsel at Alston & Bird; Jessica Liou, Partner at Weil; Charlie Liu, Associate at Morgan Lewis; and Geoffrey Williams, Associate at Alston & Bird. The panel provided law student attendees an opportunity to learn about the bankruptcy and restructuring practice area and what being a bankruptcy attorney entails.

William Lee began the event by asking panelists to give an introduction of what bankruptcy and restructuring is. Panelists described bankruptcy as a tool companies are given to reorganize themselves and remove liability pre-bankruptcy. Restructuring encompasses a wide spectrum of processes available to companies, such as filing for court protection, financial restructuring, and operational restructuring. William Hao summarized chapters 7, 11, and 13, the three most common processes used by bankruptcy lawyers.

Next, panelists were asked to describe their experiences working as a bankruptcy and/or restructuring lawyer. Jessica Liou stated that bankruptcy and restructuring is flexible and described it as a hybrid between litigation and transactional work. Some lawyers work in the bankruptcy-litigation niche, while others take the transactional route. When asked what type of student would fit the mold of a bankruptcy lawyer, panelists answered that it would be someone who is interested in a variety of things. Not only can a bankruptcy case be quick-paced, but a bankruptcy lawyer also gets to work with different groups in the firm, such as the tax group, executive compensation group, or litigation group. No two bankruptcy cases are the same, so a bankruptcy lawyer must be willing to do and understand many different things. Jessica Liou also shared how it is extremely rewarding to be a restructuring lawyer as she helps save jobs and helps companies get a second chance. 

The panel concluded with tips and recommendations to students who may be interested in getting involved in the bankruptcy and restructuring practice area. Panelists suggested that students should look for opportunities to get exposure to bankruptcy. These include trying an internship or bankruptcy judicial clerkship, taking a bankruptcy course, talking to bankruptcy lawyers, or participating in the Duberstein Moot Court competition. 

Thank you to the Student Outreach Committee and the Commercial Bankruptcy and Restructuring Committee for organizing this informative panel. And thank you to William Lee for moderating and to William Hao, Jessica Liou, Charlie Liu, and Geoffrey Williams for volunteering their time and sharing their experiences. To learn more about the Commercial Bankruptcy and Restructuring Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/353. To learn more about the Student Outreach Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/121.

AABANY Hosts 2021 Annual Meeting of Members on Remo

On Tuesday, February 9, 2021, AABANY held its Annual Meeting of Members on Remo. President Sapna Palla called the meeting to order and established quorum. Elections were held for the 2021 Board of Directors and Officers.

President Sapna Palla presented the Year in Review and Executive Director, Yang Chen, presented the report of the Committees. Following the reports, awards were presented to honor AABANY leaders and committees for their dedication to AABANY over the past year. While these presentations were occurring, Immediate Past President Brian Song and President-Elect Terrence Shen tallied the votes.

The following officers were elected and will begin their term on April 1, 2021:

William Ng
President-Elect

Cynthia Lam
Vice President, Programs and Operations

Joe Eng
Vice President, Programs and Operations

Margaret Ling
Development Director

William Hao
Treasurer

Christopher Bae
Secretary

Beatrice Leong
Membership Director

The following candidates were elected as Directors to serve two-year terms starting on April 1, 2021:

Jasmine Ball
Jeff Ikejiri
Suzanne Kim
Chris Kwok
David Sohn
Bart Wu
Karen Yau
Andy Yoo

Congratulations to all the Officers and Directors who were elected to the Board.

The following awards were presented:

Committees of the Year: The Pro Bono and Community Service Committee and the Student Outreach Committee

For the numerous initiatives they organized to support the community during COVID-19, including Know Your Rights webinars, COVID Rent Relief Program application drives, and postering and social media campaigns to promote the Remote Pro Bono Legal Clinic and other community programs.

Program of the Year: Weekly Membership Mixers

For hosting more than 30 weekly mixers on Zoom and Remo since April 1, 2020 to provide an open space for members and non-members to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections.

Member of the Year: Bart Wu

For his outstanding work with the Legal Referral and Information Service, which he helped launch, and his work reviving the Solo and Small Firm Practice Committee.

Congratulations to all the honorees for the recognition of their achievements and hard work during the 2021 fiscal year.

Congratulations to the Officers and Directors elected to the Board to serve during fiscal year 2022 which commences on April 1, 2021.

We would also like to thank our members for attending and participating in the annual meeting.

Student Outreach Committee Hosts Successful Mock Interview Workshop in Collaboration with Columbia Law School APALSA

On Monday, January 4, 2021, AABANY’s Student Outreach Committee hosted its first virtual Mock Interview Workshop in collaboration with Columbia Law School APALSA, AABANY Career Placement Committee, and the Columbia Law School Alumni Association. The event was part of the Student Outreach Committee’s pre-OCI series, held to prepare students for the interviews during a time of great uncertainty. 90 students from various law schools in and outside of New York received mock interviews and OCI advice from over 40 practitioners, public servants and general counsels from diverse backgrounds.

Prior to the workshop, Columbia Law School APALSA initiated the pairing of students and attorneys according to their availability and shared practice interests. Once the student-attorney pairings were solidified, students connected with attorneys via email. This advance preparation made for a smooth and timely transition to the event.

The workshop began promptly at 6:00 PM with a panel discussing interview tips, dos and don’ts, and Zoom etiquette. The panel, moderated by Margaret Ling, AABANY’s Development Director, featured esteemed speakers Rudy Carmenaty, President of the Columbia Law School Alumni Association, and Yen Chu, Secretary of the Columbia Law School Alumni Association. An OCI tip sheet carefully prepared by the members of the Student Outreach Committee was circulated to the students for review prior to their mock interviews. Starting at 6:30 PM, students met with their paired attorneys for one-on-one 30-minute mock interview sessions through the Remo platform and received invaluable feedback. Many students and attorneys expressed how beneficial the event was and that they appreciated AABANY for organizing such an event where attorneys could pay it forward and students could gain unique interview experiences from well-regarded practicing attorneys and public servants. One student, Eleen Zhou, a 2L from Cornell Law School, commented that she found the mock interview extremely helpful in preparation for the OCI season. Despite a few technical difficulties, members of the Student Outreach Committee worked diligently and promptly to ensure that no attorney or student was left without a mock interview opportunity.

The Student Outreach Committee would like to thank the participating attorneys for generously contributing their valuable time to help our students practice their interview skills. For students entering the interviewing season, best of luck! Please do not hesitate to reach out if AABANY’s Student Outreach Committee can ever be a resource for you. For more information about the Committee go to https://www.aabany.org/page/121

Student Outreach Committee Hosts Highly Successful Inter-APALSA Resume Review Workshop on Nov. 12

On Thursday, November 12, 2020, AABANY’s Student Outreach Committee (“SOC”) together with NYU APALSA as co-sponsor were thrilled to host over 110 attendees in its annual resume review workshop on the virtual platform, Remo. The event was particularly exciting this year because we invited APALSAs locally and outside of New York. We were pleased to see students join us from different states representing fifteen APALSAs who got to meet numerous attorneys in diverse sectors ranging from law firms to General Counsels of public companies.

Before the date of the workshop, Blair Hu and Jeong Hyun Hwang from NYU APALSA helped us pair the students and attorneys according to their shared interests in practice areas, school, time availabilities, etc. Once the student-attorney pairing information was sent to all the participants, the students sent in their resumes and connected via email in advance. This preparation contributed to the smooth and timely transition into the start of the event. 

At the beginning of the workshop, students waited in a virtual assembly room where they had the opportunity to join different tables and network while waiting for their turn. Each student met with their paired resume reviewers for a one-on-one 20-minute session and received personal feedback on their resumes and career paths. One of the students, Ashley Wong, a 3L from Boston University School of Law, commented that she loved the waiting room feature for the students and that her paired attorney was able to review her resume prior to the event. Ashley commented: “I loved the event and found it super useful.” Despite the initial technical difficulties with Remo, the platform created a unique space for students and attorneys to meet, network, and potentially create meaningful relationships in the community. Based on the feedback that we received from the students and attorneys, we are delighted to know that folks found our event to be useful and had a great time meeting their partners.

We hope everyone enjoyed themselves that night and continue to nurture the connections that they have made. Thank you to the students for joining us, the attorneys who graciously donated their time, and everyone who helped make this event a success. We hope everyone continues to stay safe and we look forward to seeing you in our future programming!

— Lia Kim, Student Outreach Committee Co-Chair

To learn more about the SOC go to https://www.aabany.org/page/121

Thank You to Our AABANY Student Leaders

AABANY recognizes and thanks its Student Leaders for all their assistance this summer in fighting COVID-19 and giving back to the Asian American community in New York. Our AABANY student leaders are:

Taiyee Chien, UChicago Law

Long Dang, Columbia Law

Alex Hwang, Cardozo Law

Dianna Lam, Fordham Law

Connie J. Lee, Columbia Law

H. Anthony Park, Ottawa Law

Jenny Park, Columbia Law

Xinyi Shen, Cardozo Law

Sejal Waghray, Emory University

Meng Zhang, Fordham Law

The flyer above contains short descriptions about why each AABANY Student Leader wants to give back and how they have been doing it, such as by volunteering at AABANY’s Pro Bono Clinic or participating in various COVID-19 relief activities and programs over the summer.

Please join us in thanking all our AABANY Student Leaders. We also recognize and thank Will Lee, Vice Chair of the Student Outreach Committee, for his leadership in bringing together our Student Leaders and helping AABANY channel their talents and energy to benefit the New York Asian American community.

AABANY Hosts Weekly Membership Mixer on August 28

On August 28, 2020, the Membership Committee hosted their weekly Zoom Membership Mixer, with 19 participants in attendance. The icebreaker question this week asked participants “What were your favorite moments as a Member of AABANY?” Members mentioned attending Fall Conference, Annual Dinner, and AABANY after parties. 
On Friday we said thank you to our Student Leader volunteers for their work during the pandemic. We were all impressed with these talented law students who found time to give back to New York’s Asian American community with COVID-19 relief assistance and rent relief applications, along with many other activities, led by Will Lee, Vice Chair of the Student Outreach Committee.

Congratulations to Long Dang, one of our illustrious Student Leaders, for winning a $50 VISA gift card!

The Membership Committee previously hosted Monthly Mixers at bars, ballparks, stadiums, operas, etc, but due to COVID, we have moved online to offer members a weekly outlet to share their feelings, see old friends, and make new connections. Mixers start at 6:30pm on Friday and the main event ends at 7:30pm but people have stayed on after 7:30pm for smaller breakout groups.

Membership Committee will continue to host weekly Zoom mixers until it is safe to gather together again in person. 

We are giving away door prizes in some weeks. In order to win, you must be a member and must RSVP on the aabany.org calendar entry to get a raffle number. Non-members can join the Zoom mixer but won’t be eligible to win a prize. 

Mixers are not recorded, and are LIVE, so don’t miss out.

AABANY Hosts Panel on How to Succeed in Virtual Summer Programs

On June 15, 2020, the Student Outreach Committee of the Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY) hosted a webinar discussing how to succeed in virtual summer programs. Moderated by James Cho, an Assistant United States Attorney with the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn and past president of AABANY, the panel featured: Luna Barrington, Partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP; Jeeho Lee, Hiring Partner at O’Melveny & Myers LLP; Andrew T. Hahn, Sr., General Counsel at Hawkins, Delafield & Wood; and Irene Han, Executive Director and Assistant General Counsel at JP Morgan Chase.

The panel first addressed what their current firms and organizations were offering for their summer programs, given the challenges of COVID-19. Jeeho Lee explained that the summer programs at O’Melveny & Myers LLP were shortened to six weeks and will be all virtual, but the firm guaranteed offers to all 2L summer associates, and that 1L summer associates were guaranteed positions for the summer of their second year. She emphasized that the staff wants to ensure that the summer program remains an opportunity for the firm to set up a platform for students to build a network with other lawyers. Luna Barrington’s firm, Weil, offered a 10-week program, which featured virtual social events, encouraged students to network, and extended offers to 1L and 2L summer associates. James Cho stated that all of his interns were assigned an Assistant U.S. Attorney to work with and that the program was completely virtual.

Andrew Hahn Sr., who also previously served as President of AABANY and NAPABA, encouraged summer associates and interns to have strong core competencies–reading, writing, and speaking skills–and to also practice their soft skills, especially in regards to social interactions and leadership. Luna Barrington encouraged individuals partaking in summer programs to make an extra effort to go out and meet people at the firm through virtual programs and to be proactive in seeking assignments as a way to distinguish themselves. Irene Han highlighted the importance of demonstrating a learning mindset, active engagement during virtual events (including turning on your video and microphone during meetings), and leadership. Jeeho Lee warned the audience to not take a guaranteed offer for granted, but to remain engaged and build a strong reputation. She also stressed that individuals should make relationships that expand their horizons. Finally, James Cho advised summer associates and interns to be heard, proactive, and present.

Irene Han gave the audience a few basic presentation tips, including dressing in business casual and meeting the cultural expectations of the firm. Jeeho Lee added that individuals should always try to dress professionally, even if others are dressed in casual attire.

When asked how to respond when an attorney is very busy and does not respond to emails and set hard deadlines, the panel suggested that the individual find another person that works with the assigned partner and ask through them. The panel also advised summer associates and interns not to ask to work in person unless the firm announces that it is opening up. They also encouraged individuals to schedule coffee chats with other members of the firm and attend company social events. The panel advised individuals to avoid excessively apologizing for mistakes or not knowing the answers to questions, but rather, to only apologize when it is appropriate and to be direct. Finally, the panelists explained that there may likely be many firms that do not give returning offers to many summer associates due to external factors, but that individuals should ask the HR manager or the director of the summer program for advice for the following summer.

We thank the panelists for their time and the Student Outreach Committee for organizing this informative discussion. For more information on the Student Outreach Committee, see https://www.aabany.org/page/121.

AABANY Presents “How to Network” Panel at Cardozo School of Law

On Wednesday, March 3rd, AABANY’s Student Outreach committee collaborated with Cardozo Law School’s Asian-Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) to host a panel on “How to Network.” The panelists included Margaret Ling, Senior Counsel at Big Apple Abstract Corp., Tiffany Ma, Partner at Young & Ma LLP, and Jeff Ikejiri, Vice President of Legal and Business Services at UnitedLex. The moderator was Aakruti Vakharia, Associate at Garwin Gerstein & Fisher LLP and Co-Chair of the Student Outreach Committee. 

Tiffany Ma spoke about her journey from a mid-tier law school to her lateral move to Morrison & Foerster, advising Cardozo law students to take advantage of their location in New York to build their networks and make themselves more competitive. She believes that “the best marketing is sincerity” and she shared her personal technique of establishing three points of commonality with new connections to help others remember her when she follows up with them afterwards.

Margaret Ling also shared a tip to have different business cards—company, personal, school, etc.—so that students can present the best side of themselves in different contexts. Margaret emphasized the importance of doing one’s homework and being aware of social cultural etiquette, always staying as humble as possible throughout the process.

Jeff Ikejiri advised students to think of networking as making friends. He told the story of how he got his current job through someone he met in line for refreshments during a break at a convention years ago. He encouraged students to be similarly outgoing and open to making new connections as well as being proactive in following up with potential connections.

Cardozo law students of all years came to hear insights and tips from the experienced practitioners. Those in attendance found the discussion thoughtful and engaging.

Thanks to Cardozo’s APALSA for co-hosting the event and providing food for the attendees. We hope to host many similar events in the future as AABANY continues to extend its outreach to students in law schools across New York.

To learn more about the Student Outreach Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/121

AABANY Co-Sponsors: Career Development in Greater China for Law Students and Young Lawyers

On January 17, 2020, the Asia Practice Committee and Student Outreach Committee successfully co-hosted an event regarding career development in Greater China for law students and young lawyers, at Fordham Law School, 150 W 62nd Street.  The panel speakers included Han Deng from Reed Smith, James Hang Jiang from Mayer Brown, Karen R. King from Paul Weiss, and Jian Wu, Co-Chair of the AABANY Asia Practice Committee.  The panel shared their insights into legal career development in Greater China and the U.S. from a comparative perspective.

We thank Jian Wu for moderating and all the speakers for presenting this informative program. We thank all attendees for coming out for this program. We thank AABANY’s Asia Practice Committee and Student Outreach Committee for co-sponsoring this event. For more information about AABANY’s Asia Practice Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/582. For more information about the Student Outreach Committee, go to https://www.aabany.org/page/121

AABANY Presents: Dress for Success

On Tuesday, November 19, 2019, AABANY’s Career Placement Committee presented its inaugural Dress for Success event. The event took place at J.Crew Fifth Avenue. Over 20 people attended the event. The event provided attendees with personal styling advice, an opportunity to shop, and wardrobe demonstrations that would allow each attendee to put their best foot forward in dressing. Special thanks to the Government Service & Public Interest Committee, Litigation Committee, Solo & Small Firm Practice Committee, Student Outreach Committee, and Women’s Committee for co-sponsoring the event. Special thanks to Flavor Fuzion Catering and Ashvini Persaud, Sr. Business Banker at Capital One, for her generous donation.