My Summer Associate Experience: Tah’jai Graves

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My Summer Associate Experience: Tah'jai GravesOur 2023 Summer Associate Program brought 14 law students from eight law schools to the firm for an intellectually challenging and professionally gratifying experience. The students took part in firm-sponsored social events and community service projects throughout the summer in addition to attending client meetings, depositions, court hearings and other proceedings. Nearing the end of the program, the students agreed to share a few highlights from their summer at Shutts.

Tah’jai M. Graves joined Shutts’ Miami office from the Florida State University College of Law. Tah’jai is a member of the Student Bar Association, the Professionalism Committee, the Black Law Student Association, and the Business Law Society. He is also Co-Captain of the Law School Basketball Team.

Here is what Tah’jai had to say about his experience at Shutts. 

What advice would you give to someone looking for a summer associate position on how to be successful?

Success often lies in the ability to control what you can control. Focus on your actions, attitude, and determination, and let go of the rest. Be comfortable knowing you did your best when everything is said and done. 

What were the three most memorable experiences throughout your time here?

The three most memorable experiences would be (1) helping draft significant provisions in a variety of contracts; (2) getting to know my co-summer associates and working together on various projects and cases; and (3) playing basketball on Sundays with some of the associates and a partner.

What is something that you learned or a new skill that you gained during the summer program?

During my time as a summer associate, I had the opportunity to sharpen my “Legal Jigsaw Master” skills. Learning what parts of the deal are critical regarding the big picture became pretty clear during my time. Moreover, being able to come up with comprehensive solutions and form persuasive arguments was also a skill I strengthened.

What were your expectations for the summer and have they been met (or exceeded)?

Talking with some of the prior summer associates and hearing such great things, I expected to have a great summer, and it was by far one of the greatest summers I’ve had. From start to finish, I can say that the people, the work, and the overall experience of being a summer associate at Shutts was incredible. I am incredibly grateful for this experience and all the people I met along the way. 

About Shutts & Bowen LLP

Shutts & Bowen, established in 1910, is a full-service business law firm with approximately 270 lawyers in offices in Ft. Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando, Sarasota, Tallahassee, Tampa, and West Palm Beach. Learn more about Shutts & Bowen at


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Shutts & Bowen, established in 1910, is a full-service business law firm with approximately 270 lawyers located in eight offices across Florida.

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