3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

(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.
Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:11 pm

Good call. Although I again point out that several of the avenues I explored did not require a top school of any type... they did require a ton of preparation and research.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273366
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:30 pm

First off, thanks so much for all this helpful advice. Secondly (if I missed this, I apologize), could you speak about the PMF interviewing stage and what sort of qualities you think they were trying to look for in candidates? Also, PMF never asks for transcripts, correct?

koeni082
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 2:09 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby koeni082 » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:31 pm

What did you do the summer after 1L year and how did it play into the big picture?

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:First off, thanks so much for all this helpful advice. Secondly (if I missed this, I apologize), could you speak about the PMF interviewing stage and what sort of qualities you think they were trying to look for in candidates? Also, PMF never asks for transcripts, correct?

PMF does not ask for transcripts.

They have a different take on finding candidates than they did in 2010. Now they are focused on leadership and team work skills.

Here is how to handle ALL interviews you will ever have in your life:

1) Write down all of the traits that you think the organization sees in itself.
Example: PMF sees itself as an elite leadership fast track program.

2) Next, extrapolate out the traits/skills they are looking for in a candidate.
PMF: Takes the initiative, is creative, can work well on a team, understands how to lead a group, can explain how to set goals, build consensus based solutions and implement those solutions, etc...

3) Finally, brain storm stories that will allow you to demonstrate those traits. I recommend at least 4. They should cover the following (at minimum):
a. time you lead a team through a change
b. time you had a big success (yeah, you want 2 "I won" stories here as a and b)
c. Biggest weakness/time you failed
d. time you convinced someone who disagreed with you/hated your guts to do it your way.

Each story should be 5-6 min long max. Each story should demonstrate that you have the above traits.


By the way, the PMF test is now focused on leadership issues. Should be easy for a former military officer. For the rest of you... well, you should probably read up on how the U.S. Government thinks about leadership.

MOre questions? Does that help?
Last edited by Voyager on Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:42 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:42 pm

koeni082 wrote:What did you do the summer after 1L year and how did it play into the big picture?


Summer intern at the SDNY USAO. It gave me an inside track on the ADA applications and would have given me a shot at becoming an AUSA down the road if my 1L grades had been good enough for a clerkship (but they weren't).

Highly recommned the USAO experience.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273366
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:46 pm

Yes, helps a lot. Thank you.

Do you know how tough it is to snag a PMF legal job? I got the impression that they are few and far between, and I worry that doing PMF might prevent me from ever getting into a legal career.

Voyager wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:First off, thanks so much for all this helpful advice. Secondly (if I missed this, I apologize), could you speak about the PMF interviewing stage and what sort of qualities you think they were trying to look for in candidates? Also, PMF never asks for transcripts, correct?

PMF does not ask for transcripts.

They have a different take on finding candidates than they did in 2010. Now they are focused on leadership and team work skills.

Here is how to handle ALL interviews you will ever have in your life:

1) Write down all of the traits that you think the organization sees in itself.
Example: PMF sees itself as an elite leadership fast track program.

2) Next, extrapolate out the traits/skills they are looking for in a candidate.
PMF: Takes the initiative, is creative, can work well on a team, understands how to lead a group, can explain how to set goals, build consensus based solutions and implement those solutions, etc...

3) Finally, brain storm stories that will allow you to demonstrate those traits. I recommend at least 4. They should cover the following (at minimum):
a. time you lead a team through a change
b. time you had a big success (yeah, you want 2 "I won" stories here as a and b)
c. Biggest weakness/time you failed
d. time you convinced someone who disagreed with you/hated your guts to do it your way.

Each story should be 5-6 min long max. Each story should demonstrate that you have the above traits.


By the way, the PMF test is now focused on leadership issues. Should be easy for a former military officer. For the rest of you... well, you should probably read up on how the U.S. Government thinks about leadership.

MOre questions? Does that help?

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Sun Dec 26, 2010 10:49 pm

PMF legal job? No such thing. Sorry, man. Someone lied to you.

You are interviewing to become a leader in the U.S. Civil Service. Yay you. No legal career, though.

That said I know of ONE person who went DOJ (did non-legal work there) and then somehow managed to get sent over to become an AUSA. VERY RARE.

As for how difficult it is to get... there were something like 8000 applicants last year which is a ton. Pretty difficult to get. IF you become a finalist you need to reach out to agencies you are interested in immediately... do NOT wait for the career fair. They want people who take the initiative and want to be in their department, yeah? So show that.

User avatar
newyorker88
Posts: 614
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2009 7:32 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby newyorker88 » Sun Dec 26, 2010 11:54 pm

how did you go about securing a job 1l year? Which strategies do you think are most effective i.e. mass mailing? Is it imperative to start right after Dec 1st?

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Sun Dec 26, 2010 11:58 pm

newyorker88 wrote:how did you go about securing a job 1l year? Which strategies do you think are most effective i.e. mass mailing? Is it imperative to start right after Dec 1st?


Well, first I tried the resume carpet bomb approach. That ended in abject failure.

So I then went to OCI and landed the USAO gig.

Other routes to consider: approach professors you did well with and try to have them introduce you to practicing attorneys/judges they know. The crim guys are great for this. If I had done better than a B/B+ average 1st semester, I might have tried it.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273366
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:27 am

As a 2L without a job for this summer, what do you recommend I do to secure employment? Is there anything you wish you had done or that you look back on with regret?

Thanks in advance.

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:30 am

Anonymous User wrote:As a 2L without a job for this summer, what do you recommend I do to secure employment? Is there anything you wish you had done or that you look back on with regret?

Thanks in advance.


See my old posts at the beginning of the thread. Think beyond your career services office. Talk to professors. Talk to alums.

User avatar
newyorker88
Posts: 614
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2009 7:32 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby newyorker88 » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:55 am

Voyager wrote:
newyorker88 wrote:how did you go about securing a job 1l year? Which strategies do you think are most effective i.e. mass mailing? Is it imperative to start right after Dec 1st?


Well, first I tried the resume carpet bomb approach. That ended in abject failure.

So I then went to OCI and landed the USAO gig.

Other routes to consider: approach professors you did well with and try to have them introduce you to practicing attorneys/judges they know. The crim guys are great for this. If I had done better than a B/B+ average 1st semester, I might have tried it.


Thanks!

uci2013
Posts: 226
Joined: Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby uci2013 » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:20 am

Awesome thread - thank you Voyager! You mentioned the Fed Defender's were critical of your having worked for a DA office. Do you think DA offices would be critical of past PD experience as well?

User avatar
NU_Jet55
Posts: 977
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2009 6:54 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby NU_Jet55 » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:32 am

Wow-great stuff Voyager, as always

Anonymous User
Posts: 273366
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 27, 2010 3:13 am

I'm a 1L (at a second tier law school in a major legal market) and just finished my first semester. I fall into the category "I've always been a good student because I'm smart, but LS exams threw me for a loop." I NEED to get a relevant job this summer and also get straight As next semester. I have a month free now with no obligations. What should I be doing right NOW?

Thanks for all your insights. I enjoy this thread.

User avatar
prezidentv8
Posts: 2821
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2008 5:33 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby prezidentv8 » Mon Dec 27, 2010 3:18 am

In for the advice due to current job search failing.

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 9:24 am

uci2013 wrote:Awesome thread - thank you Voyager! You mentioned the Fed Defender's were critical of your having worked for a DA office. Do you think DA offices would be critical of past PD experience as well?


Much less so. Most DA offices are going to just appreciate the interest in criminal law. Also, most ADAs see themselves as dispensers of justice... they want a fair result and realize that PD are integral to that process. As a result, they probably will not hold it against you.

PD offices tend to be staffed by fanatics, in my limited experience... at least in NY.

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 9:29 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 1L (at a second tier law school in a major legal market) and just finished my first semester. I fall into the category "I've always been a good student because I'm smart, but LS exams threw me for a loop." I NEED to get a relevant job this summer and also get straight As next semester. I have a month free now with no obligations. What should I be doing right NOW?

Thanks for all your insights. I enjoy this thread.


Well, people may bash me for saying this, but I really think taking a course on how to take law school exams would really help you. Someone close to me BOMBED first semester, took a course like that and got mostly As in the second semester. Landed a job at a V10 for 2L summer. Yeah, yeah, just one anecdote is worthless, I know. But the point is that it is possible to radically improve your grades.

As for getting a relevant job this summer? Again, I think your best bet is to seek out alumni and professors who can put you in touch with practicing attorneys. It will take some work but is worth the effort.

The resume carpet bomb approach is probably going to be a waste. It is much better to try to find a job through connections. If you are like me, you have no connections. SO GO MAKE SOME. People like talking about themselves. When you track down alumni try to set up an informational interview. That is, you sell it to them as a chance for you to learn about what they do NOT as a job interview. They are much more likely to meet with you then. From there, you need to impress them enough to get them to tell you about opportunities they are aware of not necessaily at their firm.

User avatar
rowlf
Posts: 167
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:55 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby rowlf » Mon Dec 27, 2010 12:37 pm

Hey, thanks for the really informative post.

I was wondering, you said earlier that you shouldn't consider a job offer really solidly yours until you're sitting at the desk. If you get an offer from a firm after 2L, and then get a clerkship deferral, should you be applying to jobs during your clerkship, just in case?

Also, assume you want to do government or public interest work. Do they do deferrals for clerkships? Would a consulting company?

In effect, is doing a clerkship a huge risk of not ending up with a job after? I'm not saying this is a reason not to do a clerkship, I'd do one if I got the chance, but is this a reality?

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 1:07 pm

Well ITE is brutal. That said, I doubt a firm will rescind a post clerkship offer... after all, you are bringing something to the table they can sell to clients. On the other hand, I have certainly heard of people losing offers while on their clerkship. Hopefully, with business picking up, law firms won't be doing that any more.

A consulting company places no value in your clerkship. However, because the screening process is so brutal, if you can get through it some firms will let you start with a hefty break between acceptance and start date. Worth looking in to. I don't know about clerkship deferrals at ADA positions or DOJ honors, but your career services office would.

No a federal clerkship should not cause you to risk losing your job. It will be a career booster for you and will open a bunch of doors. 2009 and 2010 were awful. 2011 is looking better. I wrote most of the above having personally survived the dark times. Things should be getting better.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273366
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 27, 2010 1:56 pm

Thank you very much for making this thread. I'm a 2L, also at CLS, who struck out during OCI. I also had below median grades 1L year.

1) How did 3L OCI (I know the autoadmit people like to say LOLCI) go for your class this year? Did you do 3L OCI?

2) I'm doing a clinic next semester and also working a job at a small law firm. Obviously, I won't (nor do I really want to) have a ton of time to devote to classwork. Do you think I should quit the job to focus on school (I only need like 6 credits or 2 classes) and get my grades up? I still don't know how I did this semester.

3) Did you suffer any malaise or depression as a result of having to search, and how did you get through that?

4) What kinds of jobs 2L summer will set me up best for the 3L job search? I'm really flexible in what practice area and type of work I want to do.

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thank you very much for making this thread. I'm a 2L, also at CLS, who struck out during OCI. I also had below median grades 1L year.

1) How did 3L OCI (I know the autoadmit people like to say LOLCI) go for your class this year? Did you do 3L OCI? Also, I graduated in 2010. I did not do 3L OCI as I (rightly) decided it would be a waste of my time. That said, you SHOULD try it. At the very least, it is good interview training.

2) I'm doing a clinic next semester and also working a job at a small law firm. Obviously, I won't (nor do I really want to) have a ton of time to devote to classwork. Do you think I should quit the job to focus on school (I only need like 6 credits or 2 classes) and get my grades up? I still don't know how I did this semester.

3) Did you suffer any malaise or depression as a result of having to search, and how did you get through that?

4) What kinds of jobs 2L summer will set me up best for the 3L job search? I'm really flexible in what practice area and type of work I want to do.


1) Carnage. Absolute carnage. 3L LOLCI was ridiculous. I don't know if it was better this past fall, but I doubt it.

2) I can't answer this one. Only you can. Are you able to handle the work and stay afloat in your classes? I think if you can keep the job, you should. Not for the money, but for the experience and contacts.

3) Yes. Of coure. I was a complete stress case. Feelings of hoelessness, etc.. I got through it the same way Marines dealt with being outnumber 10 to 1 by Chinese at Chosin: I attacked immediately with everything I had. You need to be focused on the SEARCH not on unemployment. To do that you need to be searching. Figure out options. Apply! Set up interview! Focus on interview prep. BUt yeah. those 6 months were awful.

4) I can't answer this without knowing what you want to do. Generally, I would say the best bet is to get a biglaw offer. Barring that? Do you want to be a prosecutor?

User avatar
johnnyutah
Posts: 1709
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:00 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby johnnyutah » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:08 pm

Thanks for the informative post. As a 3L graduating in May that still can't find a job, I appreciate hearing about other people's experiences with the struggle.

You mentioned you applied to a shit ton of jobs. Did you look outside of big urban areas like NYC, DC, etc? I'm at an east coast t-14, and I'm trying to expand my job search to some areas that t-14 grads don't generally feed in to. I've gotten a few questions so far about why I would want to end up in some of these markets (like Pittsburgh, Memphis and Baltimore). Got any advice on how to handle them?

Voyager
Posts: 640
Joined: Sun May 06, 2007 2:52 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby Voyager » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:11 pm

johnnyutah wrote:Thanks for the informative post. As a 3L graduating in May that still can't find a job, I appreciate hearing about other people's experiences with the struggle.

You mentioned you applied to a shit ton of jobs. Did you look outside of big urban areas like NYC, DC, etc? I'm at an east coast t-14, and I'm trying to expand my job search to some areas that t-14 grads don't generally feed in to. I've gotten a few questions so far about why I would want to end up in some of these markets (like Pittsburgh, Memphis and Baltimore). Got any advice on how to handle them?



My posts above describe the entirety of what I did. Yes, I looked at DC... but was only considering the PMF there.

As for why a specific market. Get creative. You have family there (cousins, 2nd cousins, a dude you know that your best friend's cousin considers to be "kind of a brother"). You always planned on moving there. Who knows ? That should be the easy part of the sale. The difficult part is why they should hire you at all.

You could also focus on how great their firm is. You could research the city and describe how AWESOME Pittsburgh is (the sight of rotting steel mills on the drive to work really makes me warm on the inside).

User avatar
johnnyutah
Posts: 1709
Joined: Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:00 pm

Re: 3L Taking Questions on Finding a Job (

Postby johnnyutah » Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:13 pm

Voyager wrote:
johnnyutah wrote:Thanks for the informative post. As a 3L graduating in May that still can't find a job, I appreciate hearing about other people's experiences with the struggle.

You mentioned you applied to a shit ton of jobs. Did you look outside of big urban areas like NYC, DC, etc? I'm at an east coast t-14, and I'm trying to expand my job search to some areas that t-14 grads don't generally feed in to. I've gotten a few questions so far about why I would want to end up in some of these markets (like Pittsburgh, Memphis and Baltimore). Got any advice on how to handle them?



My posts above describe the entirety of what I did. Yes, I looked at DC... but was only considering the PMF there.

As for why a specific market. Get creative. You have family there (cousins, 2nd cousins, a dude you know that your best friend's cousin considers to be "kind of a brother"). You always planned on moving there. Who knows ? That should be the easy part of the sale. The difficult part is why they should hire you at all.

Yeah, I've just been making up a girlfriend that is from the area. Hopefully that'll work out eventually.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.