Volunteer Attorney Mentors Needed for 2014-15 School Year


TO VOLUNTEER: E-mail Amina DeBurst at adeburst@meckbar.org today!


Lunch with a Lawyer (LwL) is a mentoring program targeting rising eighth grade students in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS). Volunteer attorney mentors meet on a monthly basis with their assigned mentee for lunch. Through this established relationship students gain a better understanding of the role attorneys play in everyday life and a positive role model. 

Past LwL mentors often state they have gained more from the mentor-mentee relationship than the student. Please consider signing up for this volunteer opportunity to make a difference in a child's life.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  Who is eligible to be a LwL mentor?

A:  All Mecklenburg County Bar members.

Q:   How do I sign up?

A:   E-mail Amina DeBurst, adeburst@meckbar.organd indicate your interest in the Lunch with a Lawyer program. You will be asked to undergo a routine background check administered by CMS before you are allowed to enter your assigned school.

Q:   What does a LwL mentor do?

A:   LwL is designed to educate students from diverse backgrounds (racially, ethnically and socioeconomically) about the different aspects of the legal profession. Our mentors are extremely valuable and serve as a representative of our local legal community.

      Over the course of the school year we ask our mentors to foster and sustain meaningful relationships with their assigned mentee. Conversations and time spent together do not have to focus solely on discussing what it means to be a lawyer. Our mentor-mentee relationships are designed help CMS students learn about future opportunities they may not have considered.

Q:   What is the time commitment to be a mentor?

A:   LwL mentors usually donate between 10-15 hours of their time throughout the school year. The mentor time requirements are outlined below:





 Estimated Time

 Attend LwL New Mentor Orientation at the Bar
& Foundation Center

 Tues. Sept. 23
12 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

 1.5 Hours

 Attend LwL Kickoff Luncheon at Marie
G. Davis Global and Military Leadership Academy 

 Wed. Oct. 1
12 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

 1.5 Hours

 Meet with mentee once a month for lunch

 October - May

 8 Hours

 Accompany mentee for an end-of-year tour of the
Mecklenburg County Courthouse


 2 Hours



Q:   What do I talk to my mentee about?

A:   It's normal to be nervous. Fortunately, our CMS partners are well equipped to prepare you on how to interact with your student. CMS representatives cover tips and techniques on how to begin the relationship with your assigned mentee at our LwL Mentor Training.  In addition, our LwL alumni mentors are always available to provide advice and guidance. 

Q:   Will my student be from a school close to my work?

A:   We will attempt accommodate your location preferences, but cannot guarantee all requests will be met.

Q:   My days are fairly busy - can I meet my mentee for breakfast?

A:   The logistics of when and where you meet with your student are determined between you, your student and the school administration. Participating CMS middle schools are often willing to work with our mentors' schedules.

Q: Do we have to meet at my mentee's school for lunch?

A:   Mentors may take their mentees off campus for lunch if they have secured the appropriate transportation and parental paperwork. Please discuss this option with your student's administrator. They will be able to provide you with the appropriate required documents.

Q:   Will I be paired with a same-sex mentee?

A:   For both our mentors and mentees to truly benefit from the LwL relationship both must be comfortable with one another to engage in meaningful dialogue. Therefore, the LwL program attempts to match its attorney volunteers with mentees of the same sex. However, depending on our volunteer size and student participation we cannot always guarantee a same sex match. We will always seek permission from our mentors before matching him/her with a student of the opposite sex.

Q:   How are the students selected to participate in the program?

A:   Selected students, who are recommended by their principals, are considering a future legal career and exhibit outstanding scholastic achievement. Each CMS middle school is contacted by the office of CMS Global Studies, World Languages & Study Abroad Programs to recruit mentees to the program. Principals are asked to identify two outstanding students to participate.

Q:   How do I sign-up my rising eighth grade student to participate in LwL?

A:   CMS is responsible for the outreach and recruitment of LwL mentees from participating middle schools. To learn more about how your student can participate please contact  Roxanne Breland Friday, Global Studies Specialist, at Roxanne.breland@cms.k12.nc.us.  Two students from each middle school are recommended by the principal.