Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )

"Real job" or internship?

Real job
4
40%
Internship
4
40%
Neither matters
2
20%
 
Total votes: 10

shootforthestars
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:26 am

Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby shootforthestars » Sun Jun 23, 2013 10:25 pm

So, parents are pushing me really hard to get a part-time job. Not a good job, just any job - we're talking McDonald's. Money is not their concern, but they claim that it'll look bad for me applying to law schools if I don't have real-world nitty gritty work experience prior to applying to law school (having worked as a tutor, I'm told, doesn't count).

Thoughts? Is it going to make me look bad that I haven't had any "real world experience" (which, for the purpose of this discussion, is apparently limited to a minimum wage job)? Know that any job I get currently really can't be a substantial one (read: nothing that requires a degree) because I'm only around for a semester and good jobs don't tend to hire people knowing they'll be gone in a matter of months.

Alternatively to the job at McDonald's, I could do an unpaid internship with a local non-profit. Since I'm interested in public service, I'm thinking that may support an ongoing narrative of being service-minded and therefore be more useful than a McDonald's job in terms of law school apps. That said, I definitely admit I don't know much when it comes to this so I would appreciate input from others to go on.

What do you all think - "real job" or internship? Or do either of them even matter?

Thanks so much!

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby 09042014 » Sun Jun 23, 2013 10:46 pm

You can probably do both.

Ti Malice
Posts: 1955
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 2:55 am

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby Ti Malice » Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:15 pm

Assuming it's actually providing income, being a tutor kicks the living hell out of working at McDonald's. Why not tutor and do the internship? McDonald's is better than extended unemployment, but it should be avoided if at all possible. You didn't go to college only to come out limited to food service; it's pretty damn unattractive to see McDonald's on a college grad's résumé. The first question that comes to mind is: why couldn't this college grad do better? That's not the kind of question you want to be raising with adcomms if you're trying to get into a very selective school. Your parents seem to have some idea that law schools expect you to do time in a dead-end minimum-wage job for a while for "character building," or some such silliness. I'm sure your parents mean well, but they really don't have any idea what they're talking about and should stop trying to give you advice on positioning yourself for law school. It's far preferable to do "brain work" with your BA/BS than unskilled dead-end wage work.

Two of my classmates at YLS did nothing but tutor for two years before applying to law school (two that I know of, that is, which means there are likely others). One of the two people I know that attended HLS did the same.

User avatar
JasonH
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:09 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby JasonH » Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:34 am

Desert Fox wrote:You can probably do both.

User avatar
stillwater
Posts: 3811
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:59 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby stillwater » Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:40 am

JasonH wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:You can probably do both.


sick first poast brah. quoting DF is the way you wanna start this party? but yea, advice is credited.

User avatar
Tom Joad
Posts: 4542
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 5:56 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby Tom Joad » Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:42 am

If you are interested in public service, McDonalds would probably give you a valuable opportunity to interact with the type of people who will be your future clients.

But you can probably do both.

User avatar
cinephile
Posts: 3469
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:50 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby cinephile » Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:46 am

McDonald's is harder to get than you might think if you have a college degree and no prior food service experience.

If you want public interest work, why not look into the opportunities to be an office assistant/secretary/research assistant/etc. at a whatever type of organization you're interested in. In my experience, they generally will hire a secretary at $10/hour. So that's experience and exposure and money.

shootforthestars
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:26 am

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby shootforthestars » Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:01 pm

First of all, thanks for all the responses!

I appreciate your thoughts, the basic theme behind which was "do both" (should have made that an option in the poll, I guess). My follow up question would be, what exactly is your specific rationale? By that I mean there are several different underlying messages I could draw from these responses, and I'm not sure which one (or ones) is correct as to the main reason(s) behind your responses. I'm sure they're all right to some extent, but it would help to know which of these are most important and hopefully provide even more guidance on how to proceed.
1. Lack of real world WE really would reflect poorly on me
2. Having real world WE would help me
3. Having money from a job would help me
4. Having a resume gap (of eight months) would hurt me
5. This is a pretty marginal thing that may help (or lack thereof hurt) a little, though nothing significant, but it can't hurt to have both WE and internship

Really appreciate the responses either way and I certainly plan on taking your advice, I'm just interested in learning underlying principles for future reference.

Also:
If you want public interest work, why not look into the opportunities to be an office assistant/secretary/research assistant/etc. at a whatever type of organization you're interested in. In my experience, they generally will hire a secretary at $10/hour. So that's experience and exposure and money.


Will they hire me on if I'm only going to be around for eight months? I asked career services at my undergrad exactly this question and he said that I was unlikely to get a job in such a field for that reason... (To be honest, I don't see McDonald's, etc, being particularly thrilled about this either, although since that's a go-to summer job for students I'm guessing they'd be more flexible.)


Finally, thanks to Ti Malice for the advice. You hit the nail on the head with the rationale behind my parents' recommendation. I myself did tend to think that "brain work" jobs are far preferable in terms of the way they look on a resume. I've applied to different tutoring positions, so we'll see what happens...if not, though, McDonald's is a fall-back.

User avatar
Tom Joad
Posts: 4542
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 5:56 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby Tom Joad » Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:32 pm

Go to a temp agency. You can get a secretarial or call center job paying $10-$15 an hour in two seconds.

User avatar
cinephile
Posts: 3469
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:50 pm

Re: Don't have much WE - will more help? "Real job" or intern?

Postby cinephile » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:32 pm

Don't tell people you're only planning on being their 8 months. For all you know, you might end up there for longer so it's perfectly permissible to treat it as any other job that you'd work at for an indefinite duration.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests