Finding a Job this Summer (1L)

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Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 1:41 am

Finding a Job this Summer (1L)

Postby ame05d » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:56 pm

Unfortunately, b/c I'm limited geographically, my school's OCI program has not helped me much in finding a summer job. I did fairly well last semester, dean's list and top 20% of my class (FSU LAW), but I didn't get selected to interview anywhere that I applied (I only applied for two positions). I teach the LSAT and will have classes all summer, and have another small job in town, but really want to do something legally related so I can tell employers for Fall OCI (a wk before school starts) that I did something worthwhile this summer. And the real world experience couldn't hurt.

Would it be a complete waste of time to print out 100 resumes (and some relatively generic cover letters I can adjust for each firm) and mail them out to firms in town? I live in Tallahassee, capital of FL, so we're definitely not short on small firms and government offices. What about cold calling to ask about summer positions, or just showing up in person to see if they need someone for the summer? Is this completely out of line with normal employment practices? Unlike most students, my parents aren't lawyers and since I'm not from here, I really don't have any connections via other people's parents' or my parents' friends, or anything like that, which seems to be the way most people are securing summer employment.

The attorney general's office has a summer internship program (that a friend of mine who is way less qualified than me secured), but I just learned about it a few days ago and the deadline is april 14th. The problem is that I would need a recommendation from a law professor. Is this way too short notice to ask for a letter if I asked him for it tomorrow? Additionally, the internship is unpaid, but requires a minimum of 20 hours a week. Because I'll already be working 2 other jobs, I wonder if this is even worth it. Would I be better off finding a firm willing to let me volunteer my services a few days a week? 20 hrs/wk for the whole summer seems excessive, given that it is unpaid.

Additionally, the placement office has suggested I use the summer to get my pro bono requirement out of the way if I can't find a job. However, this is only 20 hours. If this was the only thing I did all summer, would that be bad? Can I put it on my resume (another reason I want to find a job this summer is to have something legally related on there) if it's purely pro bono work? If I just work at a firm somewhere for free this summer, do I have to mention that it was unpaid on my resume? Silly question, just double checking.

One more note, my friend who is a 3L and works w/ me teaching the LSAT says that the 20 hours a week work maximum set by the ABA for full time students is just bs, and that they definitely don't care ab this. I'm worried about violating it, but he says that he has worked up to 40 hrs/wk at one point in law school and that the bar simply does not care. Is this true? How careful should I be about this?

I lied, one more question. I have a DUI on my record.... government agencies do background checks before hiring. Do you think a DUI would necessarily preclude me from these positions? Two years ago when it happened, my lawyer told me the legal community has a high tolerance for drug and alcohol abuse, and that it wouldn't matter as far as getting into law school or being admitted to the bar. I don't think it had any effect whatsoever on my admissions cycle, but I don't know how employers, specifically those with the state of FL, would react to this. Any thoughts?

Thanks :)


Posts: 73
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2009 12:31 am

Re: Finding a Job this Summer (1L)

Postby NYU2011 » Mon Apr 05, 2010 12:24 am

Start sending stuff out now, you are behind the game and you should have something with substantive legal work on your resume. Be aware that firms generally cannot take students without pay because of laws and NALP rules. Do you just need a reference from a professor or an actual letter of recommendation? Either way I would apply to that internship and any others you can find ASAP. The 20 hours a week rule does not apply during the summer.

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