(WASHINGTON, DC) Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP announced today that Amit Bhatla, first-year student at George Washington University Law School, was selected for the firm's Minority 1L Environmental Internship program.

Bhatla, who earned his BS in chemical engineering from the University of Kansas, is participating in the paid internship program spearheaded by the Environmental and Workplace Safety practice in Katten's Washington, DC office.

The eight-week-long summer program goes beyond buzzworthy diversity rhetoric, and provides a tangible opportunity to introduce minority law students to the growing practice area and to gain hands-on experience in the environmental legal space. Bhatla will work directly with firm practice leaders and on projects relating to key environmental and workplace safety issues and regulations that major companies, national and regional trade associations, and corporate managers regularly face.

"This is the third year of our internship program which we hope will lead more aspiring attorneys of diverse backgrounds to become crisis management practitioners. Katten is dedicated to diversity and we actively promote a diverse culture through our recruitment, mentoring, and training programs," said Mark Farley, head of Katten's Environmental and Workplace Safety practice. "Our goal is to expose our 1L intern to a cutting-edge workplace safety practice in which Katten has a national reputation for excellence."

Katten's Environmental and Workplace Safety team represents major companies in a wide range of industry sectors, including chemical, energy, oil and gas. Collectively, the team, which includes former federal environmental prosecutors, has deep experience in crisis management, internal investigations, administrative proceedings, enforcement actions and other government inquiries, and civil and criminal litigation.

The internship program is designed to be a mentoring and learning opportunity for diverse law students to gain insight into industry trends and federal and state laws and regulations so they are well positioned to become a summer associate in any practice area, particularly environmental law.

"We want to see a diverse workforce embraced and improved at law firms. Building a pipeline to the firm begins with recruiting efforts to bring and keep the best talent possible at Katten," said Katten's Chief Diversity Officer Leslie D. Minier. "To get top talent in the door, we offer a number of opportunities to law students such as the minority environmental internship and scholarships and partner with diverse student organizations at law schools in hosting events, career panel discussions and resume workshops."

Katten also awarded $15,000 scholarships each to Ashley Ogedegbe, who attends Washington University School of Law, and Argemira Florez, who attends Columbia Law School. Both are summer associates in the firm's Chicago office and New York office, respectively.

The firm's scholarship program offers financial aid to two minority law school students who have completed their first year of law school and are participating in the firm's summer associate program. The recipients are selected based on several criteria, including superior academic achievement, leadership experience and personal qualities that reflect the potential for outstanding contributions to Katten and to the legal profession.

Additionally, Katten participates in the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) 1L Scholars program, where diverse high-potential first-year law students have the opportunity to complete challenging work assignments, participate in various summer associate events and learn firsthand what it is like to work at Katten.