More than a dozen large law firms are participating in an initiative starting in July that is designed to help Black associates advance their careers.

Funded by the Arnold & Porter Foundation and designed by the National Bar Association, the Associate Advancement Academy for Excellence is a year-long program that is aimed to equip young lawyers with the skills and tools they need to forge ahead. The program’s designers say they ultimately hope to support the retention and advancement of Black attorneys—a group that is significantly underrepresented at law firms, especially in the partnership ranks.