1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

(housing, friendships, future exams, all things 2012)
art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:23 pm

So, with the economy in the tank I'm wondering if it's even worth trying to send out a gajillion resumes in the hopes of hitting it big next summer.

I'm a rising 1L at UT, Hispanic, just graduated UG (from South Carolina with run-of-the-mill internship experience in financial services and government), don't really care where I work.

Anyone think I've got a shot at landing a single interview if I send out about 70-80 resumes and tailored cover letters to various big-and-mid-law firms?

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:01 pm

bump

User avatar
Attucks
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:15 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby Attucks » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:03 pm

No, don't even try.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:12 pm

Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.


OK. Except I have nothing better to do than type up a spreadsheet database of firms that NALP says hire 1Ls and then prepare a basic customizeable cover letter template for disbursement after Dec 1. Seriously. So I'm gonna do it for the hell of it.

User avatar
Spaceman_Stiff
Posts: 80
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:45 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby Spaceman_Stiff » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:13 pm

art vandelay wrote:
Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.


OK. Except I have nothing better to do than type up a spreadsheet database of firms that NALP says hire 1Ls and then prepare a basic customizeable cover letter template for disbursement after Dec 1. Seriously. So I'm gonna do it for the hell of it.


Doesn't hurt, at worst you will be getting a foot in the door at the firm :P. Put something about how you are interested in next year even if this year doesn't work out, and at least try to get a contact there.

User avatar
iceberger
Posts: 289
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2008 12:24 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby iceberger » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:13 pm

Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.



For UT? You can't be serious.

User avatar
Arrow
Posts: 169
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 4:58 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby Arrow » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:15 pm

I can tell you that this year, everyone who sent out cover letters asking for 1L firm jobs appear to have been rejected. In fact, I do not know anyone who is working for a paid 1L firm job.

Now, with that said, there are some exceptions. A few of my 1L friends do work at firms as unpaid summer clerks/associates. The vast majority do appear to do judicial externships, public interest, or researching for a professor. In addition, I know of people at other law schools would have gotten 1L firm jobs either in the IP sector (especially if they have already passed the patent bar) or via a diversity minority scholarship of some sort (very tough to get).

So, if you are doing IP, applying for a diversity/minority program, or do not mind being unpaid, I would totally try still. In addition, if you have some strong connections at one firm, I would totally go for it as well. Some secondary markets may have better luck as well. I doubt the economy has changed much from this last year, as many firms simply replied that they were not hiring at all. So, other than these exceptions, I would not bother with firms. You can still do it, and who knows, you will get lucky. In the past, if you sent out 500 letters, you might catch something. This year though, it appears that people just are not catching anything at all.

Also, if you are at HYS (and perhaps some other top school), you should try.

Best of luck!

User avatar
SoxyPirate
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 10:31 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby SoxyPirate » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:21 pm

I'm not even in law school and I sent out 4 resumes this spring to some local attorneys and the DA.

I had 2 offers, one unpaid (with the DA) and another at minimum wage.

Point being: Jobs may be there, it just depends on whether you'd rather work for free, work with a small firm for cheap, or not work at all.

I chose working for cheap. Next summer if I have no "big" offers maybe I can do the same.

User avatar
OperaAttorney
Posts: 517
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 11:48 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby OperaAttorney » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:33 pm

art vandelay wrote:
Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.


OK. Except I have nothing better to do than type up a spreadsheet database of firms that NALP says hire 1Ls and then prepare a basic customizeable cover letter template for disbursement after Dec 1. Seriously. So I'm gonna do it for the hell of it.


I'm going to send letters out of well. So, that makes 2 of us (at least) at UT. May the better man win! :lol:

User avatar
Aeroplane
Posts: 473
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2009 7:40 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby Aeroplane » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:42 pm

betasteve wrote:Of course try. Fuck. You certainly won't get one if you don't try.
+1. Don't be shy about using connections either. Not just in the rich-kid-with-law-partner-uncle way. Like literally anyone you've ever met who is a lawyer or knows one. For example, I still have the contact info of the local GULC alum who interviewed me. I would totally hit him up for a 1L firm job.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:43 pm

Arrow wrote:I can tell you that this year, everyone who sent out cover letters asking for 1L firm jobs appear to have been rejected. In fact, I do not know anyone who is working for a paid 1L firm job.

Now, with that said, there are some exceptions. A few of my 1L friends do work at firms as unpaid summer clerks/associates. The vast majority do appear to do judicial externships, public interest, or researching for a professor. In addition, I know of people at other law schools would have gotten 1L firm jobs either in the IP sector (especially if they have already passed the patent bar) or via a diversity minority scholarship of some sort (very tough to get).

So, if you are doing IP, applying for a diversity/minority program, or do not mind being unpaid, I would totally try still. In addition, if you have some strong connections at one firm, I would totally go for it as well. Some secondary markets may have better luck as well. I doubt the economy has changed much from this last year, as many firms simply replied that they were not hiring at all. So, other than these exceptions, I would not bother with firms. You can still do it, and who knows, you will get lucky. In the past, if you sent out 500 letters, you might catch something. This year though, it appears that people just are not catching anything at all.

Also, if you are at HYS (and perhaps some other top school), you should try.

Best of luck!


Yeah, I'm gonna try some of those diversity fellowships as well. Also I'm not necessarily sending all my letters to NYC white shoe firms. Au contraire, I'm probably only going to even bother with a few smaller firms in those types of big markets. I'm noticing some firms in TX/the South that I might have at least a (relatively) easy shot at.

legends159
Posts: 1090
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 4:12 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby legends159 » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:44 pm

be sure to send out to judges as well as small firms

the point is that big law likely won't hire you since they would then have to pay you 3000+ a week for you to sit around and do nothing

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:44 pm

OperaAttorney wrote:
art vandelay wrote:
Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.


OK. Except I have nothing better to do than type up a spreadsheet database of firms that NALP says hire 1Ls and then prepare a basic customizeable cover letter template for disbursement after Dec 1. Seriously. So I'm gonna do it for the hell of it.


I'm going to send letters out of well. So, that makes 2 of us (at least) at UT. May the better man win! :lol:


Haha. Hey, are you making any sort of copy-able excel database or something of trade value? Perchance? No point in keeping or work to ourselves when we can help each other out haha.

Also are you gonna send letters to alums at firms, or just the appointed recruiting manager?

jrs12
Posts: 100
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 1:47 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby jrs12 » Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:29 pm

Here's the thing to keep in mind: summer associates are an expense. You cost a lot of money, and you bring nothing. The reason that people are willing to pay you is because they're trying to recruit you as an associate. People who get paid 1L firm jobs are the ones who kick ass their first year, and express a SERIOUS interest in being an associate for the firms they're talking to.

M_Cool
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 2:28 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby M_Cool » Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:34 pm

1L SA's seem to be more common in secondary markets with big regional firms that often aren't on the NLJ 250. In Salt Lake a lot of the firms hire a decent amount of 1L summers (parr brown, parsons behle, kirton & mcconkie, ray quinney, et cetera). You might try hitting large secondary market firms if you have a tie to the city.

User avatar
thesealocust
Posts: 8448
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 8:50 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:37 pm

Edit: n/m
Last edited by thesealocust on Sun Aug 02, 2009 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Tue Jul 07, 2009 12:20 am

thesealocust wrote:Also keep in mind that in many respects, a 1L is less of a burden for a hurting firm than a 2L. They don't have to commit to an offer, so they can use them to pad their class. Still take X SAs, but for every 1L you take that's a 6 figure salary the firm isn't pressured to offer at the conclusion. At least some firms may go 1L heavy as a result... but that's total wild speculation.


No, that's right. According to NALP there are a couple firms in secondary Southern markets that actually have more 1L SAs than 2Ls. In Houston there is a firm that seems to be hiring 2 1L SAs for every 3 (or so) 2Ls. So there are some firms that follow your principle, but they are by FAR the exception, not the norm.

User avatar
OperaAttorney
Posts: 517
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 11:48 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby OperaAttorney » Tue Jul 07, 2009 12:30 am

legends159 wrote:be sure to send out to judges as well as small firms

the point is that big law likely won't hire you since they would then have to pay you 3000+ a week for you to sit around and do nothing


Very true. That's what a partner on the hiring committee for a V30 firm told me recently.

User avatar
OperaAttorney
Posts: 517
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 11:48 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby OperaAttorney » Tue Jul 07, 2009 12:54 am

art vandelay wrote:
OperaAttorney wrote:
art vandelay wrote:
Attucks wrote:No, don't even try.


OK. Except I have nothing better to do than type up a spreadsheet database of firms that NALP says hire 1Ls and then prepare a basic customizeable cover letter template for disbursement after Dec 1. Seriously. So I'm gonna do it for the hell of it.


I'm going to send letters out of well. So, that makes 2 of us (at least) at UT. May the better man win! :lol:


Haha. Hey, are you making any sort of copy-able excel database or something of trade value? Perchance? No point in keeping or work to ourselves when we can help each other out haha.

Also are you gonna send letters to alums at firms, or just the appointed recruiting manager?


To be honest, all I've done is browse the web for firms in Austin, Dallas, and Houston. (Dallas seems to have the most firms.) I haven't documented anything, though. Lately I've been too busy--I'm throwing a surprise party for my dad, who just turned 75--to fret about December 1st.

I'm not sure what contact person I'll use at every firm. It just seems strange to write an alum who doesn't know me. At the UT admitted students reception in Los Angeles, I met a UT alum who's currently a partner at a V25 firm. I've stayed in touch with him and will seek his advice re: SA positions at his firm. But I'm doubt his firm will hire 1L's next summer, as it has downsized within the last 12 months.

User avatar
tl
Posts: 178
Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 2:04 pm

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby tl » Tue Jul 07, 2009 1:17 am

I say go for it, but try to target markets where you have connections. Try where you grew up, where your family lives, and where you went to UG. Hopefully, these are smaller markets.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Tue Jul 07, 2009 1:19 am

No problem, Opera. If you ever get around to putting together a database get at me and maybe we'll do business.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Wed Jul 08, 2009 4:11 am

jrs12 wrote:Here's the thing to keep in mind: summer associates are an expense. You cost a lot of money, and you bring nothing. The reason that people are willing to pay you is because they're trying to recruit you as an associate. People who get paid 1L firm jobs are the ones who kick ass their first year, and express a SERIOUS interest in being an associate for the firms they're talking to.


Well I guess in this economy we'll all have "SERIOUS interest" in just about any firm, so long as they'll hire us. I guess all that remains to do is "kick ass" this year.

18488
Posts: 174
Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:57 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby 18488 » Wed Jul 08, 2009 7:05 am

fwiw, I had two paid summer associate gigs in small firms in a small town this summer (1L summer). They didn't pay the mega-firm salaries, but they paid substantially more than the stipend the school gives for public interest work. So it's not completely impossible.

jrs12
Posts: 100
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 1:47 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby jrs12 » Wed Jul 08, 2009 8:57 am

art vandelay wrote:
jrs12 wrote:Here's the thing to keep in mind: summer associates are an expense. You cost a lot of money, and you bring nothing. The reason that people are willing to pay you is because they're trying to recruit you as an associate. People who get paid 1L firm jobs are the ones who kick ass their first year, and express a SERIOUS interest in being an associate for the firms they're talking to.


Well I guess in this economy we'll all have "SERIOUS interest" in just about any firm, so long as they'll hire us. I guess all that remains to do is "kick ass" this year.


Almost.

It's not having a serious interest that counts--it's expressing it.

By the way, thanks for the info about the firms that so many 1Ls. That's outside my experience, and I didn't realize it was happening.

art vandelay
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:41 am

Re: 1L Summer Associateships: Should we even bother trying?

Postby art vandelay » Wed Jul 08, 2009 5:13 pm

jrs12 wrote:
art vandelay wrote:
jrs12 wrote:Here's the thing to keep in mind: summer associates are an expense. You cost a lot of money, and you bring nothing. The reason that people are willing to pay you is because they're trying to recruit you as an associate. People who get paid 1L firm jobs are the ones who kick ass their first year, and express a SERIOUS interest in being an associate for the firms they're talking to.


Well I guess in this economy we'll all have "SERIOUS interest" in just about any firm, so long as they'll hire us. I guess all that remains to do is "kick ass" this year.


Almost.

It's not having a serious interest that counts--it's expressing it.

By the way, thanks for the info about the firms that so many 1Ls. That's outside my experience, and I didn't realize it was happening.


Yeah no prob. They do appear to be out there, but they are very few.




Return to “TLS Class of 2012 Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests