Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

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caleb-law

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Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby caleb-law » Mon Dec 03, 2018 2:15 pm

I've heard a lot on TLS that UVA (which is one of my top choices because my family is close by) isn't that great with Chi Big Law because Chicago firms prefer a connection to Chicago like going to U Chi or NU, HYS, or being form the area, etc...
I grew up near Indianapolis (moved to VA in tenth grade) and my family and I would go to Chicago a lot to visit relatives and see the city. I also intend to work in Chicago during both of my summers in law school.
So are these connections strong enough for me to get interviews if I go to UVA and am at median? Or in other words are my connections enough to get Chicago big law if I go to UVA and work in Chi both summers instead of going to NU or U CHI?

Npret

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Re: Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby Npret » Mon Dec 03, 2018 7:37 pm

caleb-law wrote:I've heard a lot on TLS that UVA (which is one of my top choices because my family is close by) isn't that great with Chi Big Law because Chicago firms prefer a connection to Chicago like going to U Chi or NU, HYS, or being form the area, etc...
I grew up near Indianapolis (moved to VA in tenth grade) and my family and I would go to Chicago a lot to visit relatives and see the city. I also intend to work in Chicago during both of my summers in law school.
So are these connections strong enough for me to get interviews if I go to UVA and am at median? Or in other words are my connections enough to get Chicago big law if I go to UVA and work in Chi both summers instead of going to NU or U CHI?

Unless it’s changed, UVA does OCI (EIP?)through bidding, so if you bid well you should get interviews. (Interviews are granted based on the order of firms on your bid list against others in your class; firms can’t decline to interview you.) I’m not sure this is the wisest plan as you should bid to maximize interviews and possible jobs, but it’s possible.

I can’t tell you how well UVA places in Chicago, but it certainly has national reach. You should just talk to the UVA career counselors and ask for their data on placement in Chicago. It’s silly for me to speculate, though you could ask in the UVA thread.

You can and should also look for UVA alums currently working in Chicago. Get their story and learn the steps they took to get their jobs. It’s important to do this as the career office at any school can be unduly optimistic. Go for actual experience in addition to career services data.

Personally, as an interviewer, I think your connection to Chicago are at least decent. I’m not sure how ties focused Chicago has become.

I wouldn’t count on a Chicago biglaw job after 1L as those are typically diversity placements. You should also ask about 1L summer jobs while you network with Chicago alums from UVA.

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Mullens

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Re: Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby Mullens » Mon Dec 03, 2018 8:15 pm

I think your connections are strong enough that you have the building blocks of a narrative. How you frame your Chicago ties will be important. You’ll need good answers of why Chicago when you’re “from” Virginia and went to UVA. Working in Chicago your 1L summer will definitely help/may be borderline necessary for the networking connections and to prove you’re serious at OCI. Will be a lot harder to sell why Chicago if the word “Chicago” doesn’t appear anywhere on your resume.

I work in Chicago biglaw and my firm has some UVA grads and treats UVA similar to Penn, Duke, Berkeley, etc. We hire students from that range of schools regularly. Chicago as a market is more selective than New York and you’d be fighting an uphill battle from median (though my firms cutoff is also above median for NU/Michigan so it’s not that UVA will put you at a disadvantage).

Wubbles

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Re: Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby Wubbles » Mon Dec 03, 2018 8:49 pm

caleb-law wrote:I've heard a lot on TLS that UVA (which is one of my top choices because my family is close by) isn't that great with Chi Big Law because Chicago firms prefer a connection to Chicago like going to U Chi or NU, HYS, or being form the area, etc...
I grew up near Indianapolis (moved to VA in tenth grade) and my family and I would go to Chicago a lot to visit relatives and see the city. I also intend to work in Chicago during both of my summers in law school.
So are these connections strong enough for me to get interviews if I go to UVA and am at median? Or in other words are my connections enough to get Chicago big law if I go to UVA and work in Chi both summers instead of going to NU or U CHI?

And I just wanted to jump in and make sure you know when the general hiring timelines are. The first summer between 1L and 2L people generally work in government, public interest, or for judges. That August in the first summer is when OCI typically is, where you interview with biglaw firms. They hire you for the 2nd summer between 2L and 3L, and theoretically offer you at the end of that summer for the real job. Just wanted to clarify because your wording made it sound like you'd be doing 2 non-biglaw summers before OCI

caleb-law

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Re: Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby caleb-law » Mon Dec 03, 2018 8:53 pm

Wubbles wrote:
caleb-law wrote:I've heard a lot on TLS that UVA (which is one of my top choices because my family is close by) isn't that great with Chi Big Law because Chicago firms prefer a connection to Chicago like going to U Chi or NU, HYS, or being form the area, etc...
I grew up near Indianapolis (moved to VA in tenth grade) and my family and I would go to Chicago a lot to visit relatives and see the city. I also intend to work in Chicago during both of my summers in law school.
So are these connections strong enough for me to get interviews if I go to UVA and am at median? Or in other words are my connections enough to get Chicago big law if I go to UVA and work in Chi both summers instead of going to NU or U CHI?

And I just wanted to jump in and make sure you know when the general hiring timelines are. The first summer between 1L and 2L people generally work in government, public interest, or for judges. That August in the first summer is when OCI typically is, where you interview with biglaw firms. They hire you for the 2nd summer between 2L and 3L, and theoretically offer you at the end of that summer for the real job. Just wanted to clarify because your wording made it sound like you'd be doing 2 non-biglaw summers before OCI

Yeah I know. My bad for not wording it correctly lol.

Wubbles

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Re: Are my connections to Chicago strong enough to not hurt me?

Postby Wubbles » Mon Dec 03, 2018 10:31 pm

caleb-law wrote:
Wubbles wrote:
caleb-law wrote:I've heard a lot on TLS that UVA (which is one of my top choices because my family is close by) isn't that great with Chi Big Law because Chicago firms prefer a connection to Chicago like going to U Chi or NU, HYS, or being form the area, etc...
I grew up near Indianapolis (moved to VA in tenth grade) and my family and I would go to Chicago a lot to visit relatives and see the city. I also intend to work in Chicago during both of my summers in law school.
So are these connections strong enough for me to get interviews if I go to UVA and am at median? Or in other words are my connections enough to get Chicago big law if I go to UVA and work in Chi both summers instead of going to NU or U CHI?

And I just wanted to jump in and make sure you know when the general hiring timelines are. The first summer between 1L and 2L people generally work in government, public interest, or for judges. That August in the first summer is when OCI typically is, where you interview with biglaw firms. They hire you for the 2nd summer between 2L and 3L, and theoretically offer you at the end of that summer for the real job. Just wanted to clarify because your wording made it sound like you'd be doing 2 non-biglaw summers before OCI

Yeah I know. My bad for not wording it correctly lol.

Alright, just making sure! Best of luck!

And I would guess you would need to be above median out of UVA to get a chicago biglaw offer, but that's just the general thing outside of the very top schools. Working in chicago during 1L summer would certainly be helpful. I'm from an area similar to yours, and I think it definitely hurt me with midwest offices when I went to school in the east and spent my 1L summer in the east.



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