koalacity wrote:worldtraveler wrote:koalacity wrote:Any thoughts on how doing a summer (especially 1L summer) internship at an animal law organization would impact your chances of getting a postgrad job in a different PI field? Would doing a 2L summer position and clinics/externships in whatever other field be enough to show legitimate interest for a FTLT job, or would it be a bad idea to "waste" my 1L summer in a place where whatever connections I would make would be extremely unlikely to help in getting a job down the line?
It shouldn't be a problem. You would likely deal with other kinds of law in that position and you can spin it if you need to.
You can also gun for animal law from day one, and if you go to a school with a post grad fellowship, take that and go to the organization of your choice and then basically write yourself a grant to fund you to stay on.
Another question for you, worldtraveler-would you mind sharing a bit about how you decided to pick Berkeley over whatever other options you had, and what you did/did not like about B as a PI-focused student? How helpful was the career services office? Was the summer funding complicated (it seems like summer funding is more or less guaranteed, but they also seem to reference funding from "other sources" frequently-were there people who did PI summers and didn't manage to get funding)?
In terms of funding, it's possible this has changed, but this is how it was for me.
You are 100% guaranteed 4k for 1L summer and 2k for 2L summer. If you put in volunteer hours with this student group, you get an extra 1k 1st summer and 2k the next. There are also competitive fellowships through the law school and the human rights center. I managed to get enough funding for 3 summers. If I can do that, anyone else can get two unless you're just not paying attention.
I loved Berkeley and am really glad I chose it. I got in everywhere except HYS and Chicago/Columbia (didn't apply), and am very glad I picked it. I liked the grading system, really liked my classmates, and loved living in the bay. I liked a lot of my classes and never had a professor I hated, although some were better than others. Students at Boalt really are very friendly and most are very interesting people.
I have had very little interaction with the CDO, to the point where I think they were pretty annoyed with me because they never knew wtf I was doing. I found them fairly useless for human rights work and did all my career searching on my own. For people interested in more conventional PI I think they're better, although their best PI counselor did leave a couple years ago. Honestly though I think law students rely too much on the CDO. There is very little someone else can do to help you get a job. If you really want a PI job you should be hustling on your own and I'm not really sure what people expect the CDO to do for them.
Some downsides: a lot of PI stuff happens in NY or DC and you're a bit isolated from that, although the bay area has an excellent non-profit scene for certain areas. It also does not have set fellowships with the ICC, UN ,or HRW like some other top schools, which was something I really wish it did have once I started applying for jobs. The school also sucks at coordinating with the rest of the university, although that is 80% the fault of the rest of the school.
On a far less serious note, they spent millions of dollars redoing the building and yet still have freezing cold bathrooms that are always a mess, and don't have enough lockers for everyone. New classrooms are nice though.