Law students who are interested in business law have a variety of career paths to choose from. Major corporations, like Target where 3L Gabi Bartlett is an extern, must comply with laws and regulations regarding taxes, trade, privacy, product safety, sustainability, data security, health care and employment and labor issues – and have an attorney or team of professionals who focus on each specific legal area.
Bartlett was placed at Target Corporation as part of St. Thomas Law’s Legal Externship Program, which offers law students the opportunity to explore different legal careers and provides them with relevant professional experience.
“I am working within the legal affairs department of Target in their compliance division, primarily with the data privacy team,” she said. “There have been numerous new laws passed in the past year, which have affected Target’s practices regarding consumer privacy. I have been able to help them implement the new systems regarding these changes.”
Bartlett says the experience has helped her to know that compliance is an area that she could see herself working in after she graduates.
“I would love to get a job working in the compliance area,” she said. “I have enjoyed everything I have been able to do, and compliance is such a broad and ever evolving field.”
In addition to data privacy projects, Bartlett has also worked with the legal affairs department’s sustainability team.
“It’s been exciting to get new projects with different teams and get to learn more about what each team does,” she said.
While Bartlett says the externship has challenged her, she has appreciated the opportunity to work on real-world legal issues and see what it means to be a corporate lawyer.
“I have found the hardest thing to be balancing the different projects I’ve been assigned,” she said. “This has also been the most helpful part of the experience, though, because it has prepared me for what a job at a big company like Target would be like.”