law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
User avatar
General Tso
Posts: 2289
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby General Tso » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:38 am

boilercat wrote:
edgarderby wrote:Hard to estimate top 10% since we don't rank, but law review is higher than that, and most of them struck out...so I'd say top 5% for major markets.



I'm not going to law school anymore.


WAP won alternative album of the year tonight

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7112
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby los blancos » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:41 am

swheat wrote:
boilercat wrote:
edgarderby wrote:Hard to estimate top 10% since we don't rank, but law review is higher than that, and most of them struck out...so I'd say top 5% for major markets.



I'm not going to law school anymore.


WAP won alternative album of the year tonight


I'm going to be listening to it in an attempt to make myself feel better when I strike out at OCI in ~20 months.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:45 am

swheat wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
swheat wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:ITT.... I just laugh.


you seem to laugh at a lot of unfunny things lately



Not really... This is pretty funny.. A thread asking about whether grades and school ranking is important? That's pretty funny as the answer should be pretty fucking obvious; no?

As for the breakdown of the thread to the conversation of ITE; if that stopped me from laughing at something else that's funny, I wouldn't really get to laugh anymore, now would I? ITE is everywhere. Not going to let it stop me from laughing at something else.


Oh yeah I agree dumb thread. I thought you were laughing about the shitty OCI outcomes.


What other 'unfunny' things have I been laughing at lately? Maybe those went over your head too? Let me know... Perhaps I can walk you through them a little slower?

User avatar
General Tso
Posts: 2289
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby General Tso » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:48 am

reasonable_man wrote:
What other 'unfunny' things have I been laughing at lately? Maybe those went over your head too? Let me know... Perhaps I can walk you through them a little slower?


Same thing in another thread. It seemed like you were laughing at the shitty OCI outcomes. Some guys are like that..."HAR HAR HAR -- SEE TOLD YA NOT TO GO TO LAW SCHOOL!!" I mean it's good to try to warn people but I think some people on here cross the line...in my opinion the whole f'ng thing is a tragedy.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:50 am

swheat wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
What other 'unfunny' things have I been laughing at lately? Maybe those went over your head too? Let me know... Perhaps I can walk you through them a little slower?


Same thing in another thread. It seemed like you were laughing at the shitty OCI outcomes. Some guys are like that..."HAR HAR HAR -- SEE TOLD YA NOT TO GO TO LAW SCHOOL!!" I mean it's good to try to warn people but I think some people on here cross the line...in my opinion the whole f'ng thing is a tragedy.



I'd like to see a thread where I laughed at someone's OCI outcome where the person was NOT A FLAME OR A TROLL. IF you find me a thread where someone actually struck out at OCI and I laughed at them, I'll shut my mouth. But I'm pretty sure that never ever happened. I take no joy in the demise of other hardworking people.

User avatar
edgarderby
Posts: 279
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby edgarderby » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:27 pm

I'm not even worried about firms, me and plenty of other people are having trouble even getting unpaid stuff lined up, anywhere. I feel like I'm going to be playing a lot of Xbox this summer, after 100+ judicial internship applications and 20+ public defender/DA jobs with no interviews.

Hell, I actually had more firm call backs than most people, even if it was only a mind-blowing 2. To put that in perspective, I had 3 as a 1L. Yes, it dropped that bad in one year.

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

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby legends159 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:39 pm

Hot damn that really sucks.

Did you send out stuff late?

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7112
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby los blancos » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:57 pm

Someone wanna tell a 0L what a callback is?

User avatar
TTT-LS
Posts: 764
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:36 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby TTT-LS » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:06 pm

.
Last edited by TTT-LS on Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7112
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby los blancos » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:10 pm

TTT-LS wrote:
boilercat wrote:Someone wanna tell a 0L what a callback is?

Generally, law firm interviews are conducted in a two-tier fashion. The first round is usually a short 15 to 30 minute screening interview, often conducted during a school's on-campus interview program (aka OCI, EIP, OGI, etc.). Those interview programs run right at the beginning of the 2L year. If a firm is interested in the candidate, then the firm offers the candidate a callback interview. If the candidate is still interested in that firm, s/he will go to the firm's offices for the callback interview, which usually lasts 2 to 4 hours--perhaps longer if lunch is included. After the callback, the firm makes a decision whether to extend an offer to the candidate to join the firm's summer associate ("SA") class. If an offer is made and the candidate accepts, then the candiate serves as a SA for 6 to 14 weeks over the summer, and at the end of that, the firm makes a decision re: whether to extend the candidate an offer of full-time employment after graduation.


Ah, gotcha. I'm used to that kind of thing, that's pretty much how OCR works at my UG.

What are firms generally looking for in an interview? Someone who's personable and has a good attitude? I'm assuming grades are important for getting callbacks since a lot of these firms can't even pre-screen? Also, pre-ITE, did you sort of have to screw up during SA in order to not get a full-time offer or was it still very competitive even at that stage?

User avatar
General Tso
Posts: 2289
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby General Tso » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:17 pm

TTT-LS wrote:
boilercat wrote:Someone wanna tell a 0L what a callback is?

Generally, law firm interviews are conducted in a two-tier fashion. The first round is usually a short 15 to 30 minute screening interview, often conducted during a school's on-campus interview program (aka OCI, EIP, OGI, etc.). Those interview programs run right at the beginning of the 2L year. If a firm is interested in the candidate, then the firm offers the candidate a callback interview. If the candidate is still interested in that firm, s/he will go to the firm's offices for the callback interview, which usually lasts 2 to 4 hours--perhaps longer if lunch is included. After the callback, the firm makes a decision whether to extend an offer to the candidate to join the firm's summer associate ("SA") class. If an offer is made and the candidate accepts, then the candiate serves as a SA for 6 to 14 weeks over the summer, and at the end of that, the firm makes a decision re: whether to extend the candidate an offer of full-time employment after graduation.


What does the 2-4 hour interview cover? Seems extremely long.

User avatar
edgarderby
Posts: 279
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby edgarderby » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:18 pm

legends159 wrote:Hot damn that really sucks.

Did you send out stuff late?


No, not really. The week of finals mostly, well before 1Ls started applying, and yet some of them are getting jobs already (not the same exact jobs I'm applying to, but similar positions in other cities). I'm going back now and sending out even more stuff as we speak though, in an attempt to get something.

I'm convinced Notre Dame is hated outside of big firms and big cities, none of which are hiring now. Nothing else can explain how we used to out-perform our ranking, and now are probably under-performing beyond anyone. We have absolutely no local market to fall-back on...I can't get calls back from the PI stuff in South Bend!

User avatar
edgarderby
Posts: 279
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby edgarderby » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:19 pm

swheat wrote:
TTT-LS wrote:
boilercat wrote:Someone wanna tell a 0L what a callback is?

Generally, law firm interviews are conducted in a two-tier fashion. The first round is usually a short 15 to 30 minute screening interview, often conducted during a school's on-campus interview program (aka OCI, EIP, OGI, etc.). Those interview programs run right at the beginning of the 2L year. If a firm is interested in the candidate, then the firm offers the candidate a callback interview. If the candidate is still interested in that firm, s/he will go to the firm's offices for the callback interview, which usually lasts 2 to 4 hours--perhaps longer if lunch is included. After the callback, the firm makes a decision whether to extend an offer to the candidate to join the firm's summer associate ("SA") class. If an offer is made and the candidate accepts, then the candiate serves as a SA for 6 to 14 weeks over the summer, and at the end of that, the firm makes a decision re: whether to extend the candidate an offer of full-time employment after graduation.


What does the 2-4 hour interview cover? Seems extremely long.


It's usually just 4-8 half our interviews with different lawyers, so basically a marathon of the original short interview.

User avatar
TTT-LS
Posts: 764
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:36 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby TTT-LS » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:36 pm

.
Last edited by TTT-LS on Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273135
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:26 am

TTT-LS wrote:
boilercat wrote:What are firms generally looking for in an interview? Someone who's personable and has a good attitude? I'm assuming grades are important for getting callbacks since a lot of these firms can't even pre-screen? Also, pre-ITE, did you sort of have to screw up during SA in order to not get a full-time offer or was it still very competitive even at that stage?

Firms are looking for lots of things. If I had to generalize, I'd say most look for someone who's interested in their market, mature, personable, and hard-working. For schools that do not pre-screen, grades matter a lot as far as whether you get a callback (wheras with schools that do pre-screen, grades have their biggest impact before the interview, in that you won't even get a screening interview if your grades aren't high enough). The callback itself is often more oriented towards "fit," since more or less everyone who goes on a callback is qualified for the job numbers-wise. I'm not sure when the exact dividing line is for when pre-ITE falls (Lehman Bros. bankruptcy circa 10/08?), but even in summer 2008 many firms were still no-offering about 10% of their classes. Summer 2009 was obviously a lot more brutal than that. I wasn't a SA in the salad days of 2005-07, but my anecdotal understanding is that you really, REALLY had to screw up to get no-offered then.


Thanks, TTT. Really useful stuff. You go to NorthwesTTTern, right? :mrgreen:

Is the whole part about being interested in their market the reason why ties to a location are important? This is something I'm concerned with, as I'm going to be targeting CA wherever I end up, but I don't have any real ties to it.

EDIT: I accidentally posted as anonymous. It's boilercat. If a mod wants to flip it that's fine.

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

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby legends159 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:40 am

CA is tough with no ties.

I've interviewed with CA firms as a 1L and i'm not from CA nor have I ever worked in CA and even though I currently go to school in CA they grill me on my commitment to CA.

User avatar
General Tso
Posts: 2289
Joined: Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:51 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby General Tso » Wed Feb 03, 2010 2:46 am

legends159 wrote:CA is tough with no ties.

I've interviewed with CA firms as a 1L and i'm not from CA nor have I ever worked in CA and even though I currently go to school in CA they grill me on my commitment to CA.


But why though? Everybody wants to live in CA. I don't understand their skepticism. If we were talking Boise or Memphis or something, then I would understand.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273135
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:03 pm

TTT-LS wrote:
boilercat wrote:What are firms generally looking for in an interview? Someone who's personable and has a good attitude? I'm assuming grades are important for getting callbacks since a lot of these firms can't even pre-screen? Also, pre-ITE, did you sort of have to screw up during SA in order to not get a full-time offer or was it still very competitive even at that stage?

Firms are looking for lots of things. If I had to generalize, I'd say most look for someone who's interested in their market, mature, personable, and hard-working. For schools that do not pre-screen, grades matter a lot as far as whether you get a callback (wheras with schools that do pre-screen, grades have their biggest impact before the interview, in that you won't even get a screening interview if your grades aren't high enough). The callback itself is often more oriented towards "fit," since more or less everyone who goes on a callback is qualified for the job numbers-wise. I'm not sure when the exact dividing line is for when pre-ITE falls (Lehman Bros. bankruptcy circa 10/08?), but even in summer 2008 many firms were still no-offering about 10% of their classes. Summer 2009 was obviously a lot more brutal than that. I wasn't a SA in the salad days of 2005-07, but my anecdotal understanding is that you really, REALLY had to screw up to get no-offered then.


Agreed with everything TTT-LS said. I'd also add that even during the fall 2008 OCI season, you stood a solid 50-60% chance of getting a summer offer if you received a call-back. The economy certainly had an impact on firms' summer hiring decisions. Having said this, most people at T-14s had no problems getting summer jobs; those who did may try to blame the economy, although more likely, it was something they did to screw up their chances. As for obtaining offers once the summer was over, the crappy economy definitely had a much greater impact (with many firms dropping the offer rates to 50% or below!)

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

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby legends159 » Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:06 pm

swheat wrote:
legends159 wrote:CA is tough with no ties.

I've interviewed with CA firms as a 1L and i'm not from CA nor have I ever worked in CA and even though I currently go to school in CA they grill me on my commitment to CA.


But why though? Everybody wants to live in CA. I don't understand their skepticism. If we were talking Boise or Memphis or something, then I would understand.


I'm guessing it's because people wouldn't mind trying out CA for a while and they want people to stay long term.

User avatar
TTT-LS
Posts: 764
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:36 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby TTT-LS » Thu Feb 04, 2010 12:16 am

Edit: Saw your point below, anon. Didn't realize you were talking about 2008 OCI--my bad.
Last edited by TTT-LS on Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273135
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 04, 2010 12:35 am

TTT-LS wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Having said this, most people at T-14s had no problems getting summer jobs; those who did may try to blame the economy, although more likely, it was something they did to screw up their chances.

This seems off to me. At NU, I think half the class ended up with nothing out of OCI. I know the same was true at similar lower T14s. Even at CCN, there are huge numbers--perhaps 40% of the class or more--who did not get a job out of OCI. And as someone posted in another thread recently, at HLS 15-20% of the class struck out (some of those people may have been half-hearted about biglaw to begin with, but definitely not all of them). Regardless of the exact figures at each school, and I reiterate that the #'s above are very approximate, I don't think there's much truth to the notion that people who didn't get a job at this fall's OCI "screwed up." It was just a bad, bad year to be a 2L.

I wasn't talking about this year's OCI. I was talking about OCI in Fall 2008. I agree that this year's Fall OCI was a shitstorm for everybody.

As for obtaining offers once the summer was over, the crappy economy definitely had a much greater impact (with many firms dropping the offer rates to 50% or below!)

On a happier note, my recollection is that offer rates tended to be much higher than 50% at most firms. There were definite exceptions to this (e.g., some of the Texas firms), but I think the 2Ls took it a lot harder than the 3Ls this August/September. My firm, thankfully, was at 100% as far as I know.

User avatar
observationalist
Posts: 472
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 12:55 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby observationalist » Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:26 am

FWIW the stats on 2L firm placement from Vanderbilt for the last two years go roughly as follows:

Class of 2009: 78% in firms, 64% NLJ250, 42% V100, almost everyone w/ offers
Class of 2010: 66% in firms, 49% NLJ250, 31% V100, multiple no-offers from Winston, Paul Hastings, etc.
Class of 2011: 50% hired as of November (so probably 45-50% in firms), no breakdown as of now (#s are released when the school publishes the Recruitment Handbook at the beginning of the summer, reports on no-offers after that are essentially all anecdotal)

Unfortunately the forthcoming NLJ 250 chart is going to use the still-outdated Class of 2009 stats, which means it will be even less useful for prospective students than last year's chart (the one linked to on the first page). NLJ is two years behind, not just one.

The only reliable information on ITE placement is what we can get from the schools themselves. Since schools are largely resistant to transparency, I would argue the only reliable information right now is what current students can provide. I used to think prospectives can leverage their acceptances to glean info from the schools but after saying that for two years with little result, I'm inclined to go back on that claim. I still think it's possible but it doesn't seem like many people are interested in contacting schools and demanding to see more comprehensive information than charts or representative lists of where graduates have gone over the last 5 years. There have to be people with similar information on current placement drops to what I've got... our stat for the current 2Ls comes from the Dean in a letter sent out to the entire student body.

Regarding the OP's question, the 50% or so of our 2L class who had jobs as of last November are not necessarily the top 50% in the class, though it probably captures just about everyone in the top 1/3 or so excluding those pursuing public interest options. Once you get out of the very top of the class it probably came down more to personality and aiming more at 'target' firms vs 'reach' firms. To my knowledge, very few students had the luxury of retaining 'safety' firms this year.

In short, the crazy application process all of you are stressing about right now is not nearly as ridiculous as what you can expect come OCI in a few years... strategy in picking the right firms can make or break whatever chances you will have at lining up a 2L firm gig. The real trick for you right now is trying to estimate what you can expect for a median salary in a few years, and then refraining from taking on more than a manageable level of debt. G'luck.

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7112
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby los blancos » Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:33 am

in general, are pretty much all the firms that do OCI biglaw or market-paying or do you get a lot of smaller regional firms sprinkled in?



i'm really tempted to explore alternate options for at least the next year or two if i don't get one of HSCCNB. i'd like to say that i'm smart/driven enough to land top 1/3 but i think that's a self-serving and unintelligent mentality.

User avatar
nealric
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby nealric » Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:23 am

in general, are pretty much all the firms that do OCI biglaw or market-paying or do you get a lot of smaller regional firms sprinkled in?


At least at GULC it's 90% biglaw for the main OCI. There are a couple of boutiques and non-national large firms from tertiary markets (like Denver, Phoenix, Seattle). Pretty much all of them at least pay market for their locality. There is a separate interview program that focuses on smaller firms and another for government jobs.

User avatar
observationalist
Posts: 472
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 12:55 pm

Re: law firm employment: depends on law school or grades?

Postby observationalist » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:46 pm

nealric wrote:
in general, are pretty much all the firms that do OCI biglaw or market-paying or do you get a lot of smaller regional firms sprinkled in?


At least at GULC it's 90% biglaw for the main OCI. There are a couple of boutiques and non-national large firms from tertiary markets (like Denver, Phoenix, Seattle). Pretty much all of them at least pay market for their locality. There is a separate interview program that focuses on smaller firms and another for government jobs.


Yeah, Vandy's OCI is similar. There is actually a second 1L OCI going on right now for regional southern firms and a few government spots, but otherwise it's OCI = biglaw, with everything else done individually (either with or without the assistance of Career Services). School reimburses students who get selected for interviews at the Equal Justice Career Fair and for other public interest networking events, but they don't really count as OCI.

The percentage of jobs coming from OCI has been shrinking at just about every school. Matthies will tell you that at his school, only a small percentage ever got OCI jobs. The rest either take the right steps to networking something or sink. With OCI less reliable everywhere, more students need to be prepared to affirmatively seek out employers. Some schools are actually really good at being up front about having to do it yourself (see New York Law School as a good example). But at that point, what you're paying for is the alumni network rather than the guarantee of a firm job. The price someone is willing to pay for an alumni network is probably lower than they're willing to pay for a guarantee or virtual guarantee of at least some firm somewhere offering them a job.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.