Work Experience

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lawschoolboundfuture
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Work Experience

Postby lawschoolboundfuture » Sat Jun 16, 2012 6:28 pm

How detrimental is it to apply directly out of college. It seems at top law schools the majority of students have taken at least one year off. I have a lot of internship experience, but i wanted to know if not taking time off will hurt me.

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dowu
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Re: Work Experience

Postby dowu » Sat Jun 16, 2012 8:07 pm

lawschoolboundfuture wrote:How detrimental is it to apply directly out of college. It seems at top law schools the majority of students have taken at least one year off. I have a lot of internship experience, but i wanted to know if not taking time off will hurt me.


No it will not hurt you. It will not help you either, such as having WE will.

I think WE can be hugely beneficial during OCI, or so I hear.

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thelawschoolproject
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Re: Work Experience

Postby thelawschoolproject » Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:47 am

lawschoolboundfuture wrote:How detrimental is it to apply directly out of college. It seems at top law schools the majority of students have taken at least one year off. I have a lot of internship experience, but i wanted to know if not taking time off will hurt me.



As the previous poster stated, doing K-JD will not hurt you. However, having quality work experience will benefit you. Internships do not usually count as WE, though.

One thing you might want to consider is your age. If you are graduating early or are significantly younger than the traditional 23/24 year old age then when OCIs roll around you may be at a disadvantage then. It's really your maturity that law schools care about and usually WE is a sign that one has some degree of maturity and can handle themselves in the work place.

With that said, though, most applicants are K-JD which is why it does not hurt you to apply as such.

bp shinners
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Re: Work Experience

Postby bp shinners » Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:57 am

thelawschoolproject wrote:With that said, though, most applicants are K-JD which is why it does not hurt you to apply as such.


This is changing at top law schools, though, and they're weighing work experience a lot more heavily than they used to.

To OP, if you can take a few years off to work, do it. It will help you in law school applications, it will help you at OCI, and it will help you in life to have that experience before law school.

Swimp
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Swimp » Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:55 am

bp shinners wrote:It will help you in law school applications, it will help you at OCI, and it will help you in life to have that experience before law school.


I cannot stress enough how helpful WE is in determining your priorities. Just living for a couple of years outside an academic environment changes your perspective in ways that you really can't predict. When I was thinking about applying to grad school right out of undergrad a few years ago, I canvassed every TA for any class I'd taken and asked older friends who had already graduated, and roughly 90-95% of them advised taking some time off before grad school just to be a twenty-something with no major attachments.

I think most people need that time to figure out what's important to them. Even if you think you know, you may not...

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Honey_Badger
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Honey_Badger » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:00 am

This is all excellent advice. OP, it sounds as though you really have nothing to lose by taking a year (or more) off after UG and gaining experience. You will not only broaden your own work experience/resume, but most likely become more marketable. Win-win.
Hell, you may even discover law school ISN'T what you really want to pursue. (Not trying to dissuade you, just putting it out there.)
Good luck. :)

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NoodleyOne
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Re: Work Experience

Postby NoodleyOne » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:25 am

When people say WE, what do they mean? I am 28 and had to work minimum wage to pay for school for five years... Is that a benefit or a non-factor?

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thelawschoolproject
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Re: Work Experience

Postby thelawschoolproject » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:31 am

NoodleyOne wrote:When people say WE, what do they mean? I am 28 and had to work minimum wage to pay for school for five years... Is that a benefit or a non-factor?



WE= Work Experience

Generally people refer to full-time work experience, typically after completing UG. Although, I have heard of circumstances where non-traditional students with children maintained full-time employment while finishing their degree, and that type of work definitely counts toward WE. It really just depends on what type of work (ft/pt) and for how long you did it on how favorably the adcomms will view your WE. Typically, summer jobs/internships don't really count as WE. But, it really just depends on the specifics of your situation.

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Pate
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Pate » Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:12 am

During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?

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rinkrat19
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Re: Work Experience

Postby rinkrat19 » Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:15 am

Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, but it's not a real job.

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spleenworship
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Re: Work Experience

Postby spleenworship » Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:55 am

rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.

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dowu
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Re: Work Experience

Postby dowu » Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:58 am

spleenworship wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.


What do you guys consider an internship? Would it be an internship if it wasn't called that and you got paid; also worked full time AND part time?

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spleenworship
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Re: Work Experience

Postby spleenworship » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:19 pm

nmop_apisdn wrote:
spleenworship wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.


What do you guys consider an internship? Would it be an internship if it wasn't called that and you got paid; also worked full time AND part time?


If it isn't called an internship and you got paid, thats a job. If you did an internship full time, that's a full time internship. If they didn't call it an internship and you got paid and you did it full time, that's a full time job.

This isn't rocket science. You guys need to learn how to spin stuff to your advantage while being truthful. That's what lawyers do.

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dowu
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Re: Work Experience

Postby dowu » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:29 pm

spleenworship wrote:If it isn't called an internship and you got paid, thats a job. If you did an internship full time, that's a full time internship. If they didn't call it an internship and you got paid and you did it full time, that's a full time job.

This isn't rocket science. You guys need to learn how to spin stuff to your advantage while being truthful. That's what lawyers do.


Just trying to clarify your position - nothing more! :lol:

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rinkrat19
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Re: Work Experience

Postby rinkrat19 » Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:48 pm

nmop_apisdn wrote:
spleenworship wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.


What do you guys consider an internship? Would it be an internship if it wasn't called that and you got paid; also worked full time AND part time?
The title 'intern' implies that you were learning during your time there, more than producing real, neccessary work product.

Obviously that's not true for all interns, but it's what most people reading the title on a resume will think.

My summer job all through college was called an internship, but that was just so we could be classified as interns instead of as permanent employees and be exempted from joining the public employee union--and getting benefits, of course. But we weren't learning anything; our purpose was to produce work.

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GirlStop
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Re: Work Experience

Postby GirlStop » Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:15 pm

This is great information!

2012JayDee
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Re: Work Experience

Postby 2012JayDee » Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:33 pm

nmop_apisdn wrote:
spleenworship wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.


What do you guys consider an internship? Would it be an internship if it wasn't called that and you got paid; also worked full time AND part time?



What did you apply for? How did you come to apply for the position?

When you applied did it say "Looking for a full/part time_____"?
Or, did it say "Looking for a paid intern"?
Neither working full time nor getting paid necessarily disqualifies the work from being an internship.

If you applied to a position listed as a full time or part time employee, and you received at least minimum wage, filled out a W-4 and paid taxes on your earnings then you had a job.

If you applied as a paid intern then you had an internship. There's nothing that says that an internship has to be unpaid. The Dept. of Labor has requirements for what an internship must consist of for that employer to not be hit with a law suit, but that means very little for how you spin it on your resume.

If your position lasted for a pre-determined amount of time (and you were not hired as a temporary or seasonal employee from the start) then you were likely at an internship. If you got school credit from your employer to use toward a degree, then it was an internship. If your work was only used to supplement full-time employees work and the work you did was not actually displacing a full time employee then you were an intern. If you were paid a nominal amount as a stipend, or you were paid a lump sum up front or at the end of the work period you were an intern.

However, certain internships can be much more valuable for actual experience than a full or part time job. Working as a cashier at McD's is a job, but that doesn't mean that it's more valuable than working as an intern for someone in a career field that you find relevant (working for an editor of a magazine, working in-house at a corporation, working in a legal dept, working for a consulting firm). What's the most important about your work experience is what you actually learned. If you learned how to run a fast-food chain while at McD's and you worked your way up from fry cook to assistant manager that's fantastic work experience. If you were an intern and helped to develop a program or a system for doing things that the company later implemented that's valuable work experience. As someone mentioned, you just need to know how to spin it. Simply putting that you worked from Jan-May is useless.

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Pate
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Pate » Wed Jun 20, 2012 3:56 pm

spleenworship wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Pate wrote:During UG, is interning at a law firm considered WE?
It's better than playing video games, butit's not a real job.


FTFY

Nothing is better than playing video games. I work so I can afford video games and a house to play them in.

Seriously though, to answer the question, rinkrat has it right. It ain't a real job, but it looks better than no job.

When I said interning, I should have said it was private for pay. . . it just felt like interning. I suppose I could spin it to sound like I had a ton of great responsibilities, but that would really be stretching it. It was a very boring four months.

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Pate
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Pate » Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:02 pm

2012JayDee wrote:
What did you apply for? How did you come to apply for the position?

When you applied did it say "Looking for a full/part time_____"?
Or, did it say "Looking for a paid intern"?
Neither working full time nor getting paid necessarily disqualifies the work from being an internship.

Thanks. Basically a family member knew an attorney (partner) and they put me to work doing mundane tasks for $15 an hour. This was a few months before law school. It was stunningly less than spectacular.

2012JayDee
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Re: Work Experience

Postby 2012JayDee » Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:16 pm

Pate wrote:
2012JayDee wrote:
What did you apply for? How did you come to apply for the position?

When you applied did it say "Looking for a full/part time_____"?
Or, did it say "Looking for a paid intern"?
Neither working full time nor getting paid necessarily disqualifies the work from being an internship.

Thanks. Basically a family member knew an attorney (partner) and they put me to work doing mundane tasks for $15 an hour. This was a few months before law school. It was stunningly less than spectacular.



Got it. Part time job as legal office assistant.

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Pate
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Re: Work Experience

Postby Pate » Wed Jun 20, 2012 6:30 pm

2012JayDee wrote:Got it. Part time job as legal office assistant.

When you put it that way, sounds rather pusillanimous. When I rethink my time at this outstanding legal organization ― this was an exciting learning experience that solidified my passion for the law. I gained everlasting experience and have countless memories of matching hand and hand with the greatest legal minds in America. (Might lose “marching,” perhaps too much of an eye-roll).

lawyerwannabe
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Re: Work Experience

Postby lawyerwannabe » Wed Jun 20, 2012 6:43 pm

Pate wrote:
2012JayDee wrote:Got it. Part time job as legal office assistant.

When you put it that way, sounds rather pusillanimous. When I rethink my time at this outstanding legal organization ― this was an exciting learning experience that solidified my passion for the law. I gained everlasting experience and have countless memories of matching hand and hand with the greatest legal minds in America. (Might lose “marching,” perhaps too much of an eye-roll).


Jokes?




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