Petal Modeste Named Dean of Career Services

Winter 2010

Petal N. Modeste, formerly the senior director of legal recruiting at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, has joined Columbia Law School as its dean of Career Services.

In her new role, Modeste intends to address the challenges presented by the current job market.

“The legal profession is in a period of unprecedented transformation,” Modeste
said. “Our top priority is to provide the resources students need to help them consider how to best contribute to the legal profession while attaining their own personal goals.”

Modeste, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, plans to expand the opportunities, training, and programs available throughout the academic year. Her office, which serves both students and alumni, will also provide access to a network of graduates who are eager to offer guidance and assistance to those seeking employment.

In addition, Modeste will serve on a new faculty committee formed to assess the
legal profession’s future and to determine how the Law School’s curriculum
can adapt accordingly.

“Petal will be an invaluable advocate to the Law School community, helping prepare students and graduates for success in the legal and professional worlds,” said Dean David M. Schizer.

Modeste began her legal career at Shearman & Sterling. There, she spent considerable time advocating for international human rights, work that included
a stint with the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. At Weil, Gotshal & Manges, Modeste focused on recruitment strategies, developing an expertise
that she will now use to enhance the professional lives of Law School alumni and students alike.