Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

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General Tso
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby General Tso » Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:12 pm

romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study. Not that it will matter, cause there won't be any jobs either way.


yeah

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby OperaSoprano » Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:32 pm

Aqualibrium wrote:I really have to comend Opera on even sharing all of this with us. Rightly or wrongly and knowingly or unknowingly, Opera's law school experience has become a sort of case study for people on legal forums across the internet. I'm sure there is already a "lol told you so" thread somewhere on xoxo or the like. Says a lot about the person you are to share your story with us despite your very real lack of anonymity.



:oops: Thank you. I promised a while back that I would share my OCI experience, though I'm a bit shocked that this thread has attracted so much attention. 4,700+ views? The response has been overwhelmingly positive, which speaks very highly of people here on TLS, and I am incredibly grateful that so many bright people have shared their own advice and stories with me. I am going to keep working as hard as I can, and try to maintain or improve my grades this year. My advice to people in my situation is to find an internship during the school year. It's given me something wonderful to build on, and I feel truly lucky that such a cool company gave me a spot. I would love to work for them after graduation, though of course I know it's a long shot. I encourage anyone reading this not to give up.

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Kohinoor
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:32 pm

romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say

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romothesavior
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby romothesavior » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:00 pm

Kohinoor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say


I wasn't directing that at OS (or anyone in particular). I'm just saying that the horror stories of OCI are a reminder of how terrible things are, and I should stay focused on school.

Really not sure how anything I said was offensive or dickish.

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby OperaSoprano » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:20 pm

romothesavior wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say


I wasn't directing that at OS (or anyone in particular). I'm just saying that the horror stories of OCI are a reminder of how terrible things are, and I should stay focused on school.

Really not sure how anything I said was offensive or dickish.


It wasn't offensive-- I know you didn't mean it that way. I've never posted my grades here, for obvious reasons, but they are fine. I feel lucky and grateful, given how smart my classmates are.

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General Tso
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby General Tso » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:21 pm

Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:24 pm

General Tso wrote:Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


... lol. Jesus, you're an idiot.

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KMaine
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby KMaine » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:45 pm

romothesavior wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say


I wasn't directing that at OS (or anyone in particular). I'm just saying that the horror stories of OCI are a reminder of how terrible things are, and I should stay focused on school.

Really not sure how anything I said was offensive or dickish.


I can understand how you did not intend this as dickish, but have a hard time understanding how you cannot see how somebody who did work very hard and still struck out at OCI would see it differently. The implication is that if others would have studied hard, they would not be in the position they are in now. May not really be a big deal, and people should have a thicker skin than that, but you really can't see how anybody would be offended?

solidsnake
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby solidsnake » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:48 pm

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
General Tso wrote:Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


... lol. Jesus, you're an idiot.


TCR

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby OperaSoprano » Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:55 pm

Please keep comments here constructive. Thank you.

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby OperaSoprano » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:03 pm

KMaine wrote:
romothesavior wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say


I wasn't directing that at OS (or anyone in particular). I'm just saying that the horror stories of OCI are a reminder of how terrible things are, and I should stay focused on school.

Really not sure how anything I said was offensive or dickish.


I can understand how you did not intend this as dickish, but have a hard time understanding how you cannot see how somebody who did work very hard and still struck out at OCI would see it differently. The implication is that if others would have studied hard, they would not be in the position they are in now. May not really be a big deal, and people should have a thicker skin than that, but you really can't see how anybody would be offended?


To KMaine: I think some people may not realize the extent to which good grades are necessary but not sufficient for success at OCI. Even coupled with skill at interviewing, there are too many other factors: poor bidding, lack of "fit" with one's interview firms, lack of market ties, incompatible pre law school credentials, or simple bad luck. The point is not to assign blame, though. It's to learn from the experience and apply that knowledge to finding a job outside the OCI framework. Your advice has been very good and I thank you for it.

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romothesavior
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby romothesavior » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:06 pm

KMaine wrote:I can understand how you did not intend this as dickish, but have a hard time understanding how you cannot see how somebody who did work very hard and still struck out at OCI would see it differently. The implication is that if others would have studied hard, they would not be in the position they are in now. May not really be a big deal, and people should have a thicker skin than that, but you really can't see how anybody would be offended?


In no way, shape, or form was I implying that those who struck out didn't study hard. There are TONS of bright, hard-working people who got good grades and still struck out at OCI. Good grades are not a ticket to biglaw, and I've been on TLS long enough to know that.

However, it is obviously easier to land a good job with good grades. Therefore, I want to get good grades in order to optimize my odds at a good job. My off-the-cuff line was simply to say that I will use the sobering reality of ITE as a tool to light a fire under my ass in order to study hard throughout the semester. If people are offended by that... then wow. Either there was a huge communication failure on my part or people are reading WAY too far into what I was saying.

Mal
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby Mal » Mon Sep 27, 2010 6:14 pm

General Tso wrote:Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


This is one of the most offensive things I have ever seen on this site.

Not only are you deriding people who were successful in one of the most competitive academic programs, but you did it in a thread that is about people who struck out (and thus are unlikely to be as successful).

People should be proud of their grades, regardless of whether they ended median or top10%.

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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:01 pm

rayiner wrote:Talking about being used to research, writing, etc, is way non-specific. You're at Harvard Law, everyone can do those things. And barking up the internet/technology tree with no background in the area is futile. There isn't really much internet/technology law that isn't patent law, and for that clients demand technical backgrounds.


And yet, I personally know at least three people at a CCN who are going to be 2L SA's essentially doing patent lit, and I met lots of first and second-year associates doing patent lit at large firms without technical backgrounds (in addition to people I've met doing tech-related corporate, again with no technical degree). Of course, all these people have good grades...

I also have an additional comment re: the "my resume screams academia" issue. My resume jumps up on the table and yells academia. That said, this has never been a problem. When they do bring it up I maybe mention that I want to perhaps get involved in adjunct teaching some day, but my biggest thing to do is to re-pivot the question to what interests me about legal practice.

The way I approach it is that the answers to all my questions are based on taking what I've done before and relating it to what makes me interested in litigation. You've got to show that you just love to win (in the case of litigation) or to work with business or financial people and be involved in big deals that make everyone lots of money. I don't know if it makes sense, but you have to be crass -- your intellectual side is a given, so you've sort of got to overcompensate in the other direction.

Based on what I've seen this, IF you have work experience, any T6 student should have been able to get a job through OCI if they wanted it regardless of grades. Work experience is huge -- without it, people really needed grades. If you come to any law school without work experience, well, good luck. But, I do think a lot of people who struck out did so because they didn't really want a big firm job after graduation and didn't have either the skills or desire to sell themselves well in interviews. And, that's fine -- if ITE makes people really evaluate what they want to do after graduation, then that's a good thing, and in the era of LRAP, those other options are doable.

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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby MrAnon » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:11 pm

General Tso wrote:
Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


This is one of the most offensive things I have ever seen on this site.

Not only are you deriding people who were successful in one of the most competitive academic programs, but you did it in a thread that is about people who struck out (and thus are unlikely to be as successful).

People should be proud of their grades, regardless of whether they ended median or top10%.


Law school is not quantum physics. It is rules that you memorize and apply to everyday scenarios. Anyone of above average intelligence can grasp it.

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OperaSoprano
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby OperaSoprano » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:22 pm

MrAnon wrote:
General Tso wrote:
Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


This is one of the most offensive things I have ever seen on this site.

Not only are you deriding people who were successful in one of the most competitive academic programs, but you did it in a thread that is about people who struck out (and thus are unlikely to be as successful).

People should be proud of their grades, regardless of whether they ended median or top10%.


Law school is not quantum physics. It is rules that you memorize and apply to everyday scenarios. Anyone of above average intelligence can grasp it.


I don't think there is anything wrong with being proud of one's accomplishments, but I do think bragging is unwarranted, given that most students at good schools are intelligent and hard working.

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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:36 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Hi thread. Harvard below-median 2L here, struck out at EIP, no interviews yet from the extra-EIP job search (CA, NY, WA).

I've talked to career services, I've read Guerrilla Tactics cover-to-cover, I know I shouldn't "horribilize" my situation. But when all my friends are complaining about how they had too many callbacks, or talking about how it's all good now that we all have jobs, it's hard not to feel some sense of alienation.

Like a lot of law students, I just kind of went to law school by default. I was a sociology major, what else was I going to do? (The recruiter in the Quinn Emanuel lounge had an idea--she looked at my resume and commented offhand that it really looked like that of an academic. I was just about crushed. At any rate, I don't have the grades for academia.) Basically the main driving factor in my choice of school was fear of being that-guy-who-passed-up-Harvard. (On their side, I suspect they only took me because of my LSAT.)

Now contrary to some perceptions, I never had any intention of partying it up and leaning on the Harvard name for a job. I wouldn't call myself a gunner, but from day one, I took classes seriously, stayed caught up on the readings, never let myself get caught off-guard in Socratic, etc. When that didn't work, I saw my professors for exam feedback, outlined early, swore up and down I'd turn things around second semester. Didn't happen. I actually had to triple-check my second-semester transcript to make sure I wasn't looking at first semester's.

So it's hard not to think that maybe my professors know something I don't. Maybe those 70+ firms know something I don't. Maybe Harvard made a mistake on me, maybe I made a mistake on Harvard, maybe I made a mistake on law school in general.

Of course, none of this is to say I should lie down and die. I'm still in the game. I just wanted to get all this out of my system so it doesn't find its way, subliminally, into a cover letter.

If you haven't yet, I would definitely target smaller cities with which you have any kind of connection.

All this talk about focus doesn't just mean practice area. Your focus can be location. I was targeting a small city near where I grew up, and was concerned that because I'm at a T14 (whereas their SAs usually come from the local T2s and T3s) they would think I was using them as backup to my NYC job search. So I made it clear in every single cover letter and interview that my main goal was to get a job in that city, that location was my main priority. At callbacks I was honest about not having any particular practice area of interest, but constantly reinforced that I wanted to be in that city and was in it for the long haul, while pointing out the specific things about the firm that interested and impressed me. It definitely worked.

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KMaine
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby KMaine » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:49 pm

Romo - Actually not offended at all by what you said, but prob. would not have said it myself just b/c I know some people are sensitive. O.S. - Good thread and good advice as usual. I think you will actually do amazing things in the law (as many who struck out at OCI will).

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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby stonepeep » Mon Sep 27, 2010 7:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rayiner wrote:There isn't really much internet/technology law that isn't patent law, and for that clients demand technical backgrounds.


And yet, I personally know at least three people at a CCN who are going to be 2L SA's essentially doing patent lit, and I met lots of first and second-year associates doing patent lit at large firms without technical backgrounds (in addition to people I've met doing tech-related corporate, again with no technical degree). Of course, all these people have good grades...


I think one of the worst pieces of advice I've ever gotten from TLS is that you can't do IP work without a technical degree. It just isn't true. You can't do patent prosecution without a technical degree, but you can certainly get a job doing general IP litigation without one. That most definitely includes work for internet and technology companies. Through OCI I have met tons of people who do IP lit without a technical background.

Maybe the problem is one of semantics, I don't know. But it is just not true that you cannot do work for internet and technology companies without a technical background.

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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby JJDancer » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:10 pm

KMaine wrote:
romothesavior wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:
romothesavior wrote:Tagged to serve as a motivator to study.

kind of a dick thing to say


I wasn't directing that at OS (or anyone in particular). I'm just saying that the horror stories of OCI are a reminder of how terrible things are, and I should stay focused on school.

Really not sure how anything I said was offensive or dickish.


I can understand how you did not intend this as dickish, but have a hard time understanding how you cannot see how somebody who did work very hard and still struck out at OCI would see it differently. The implication is that if others would have studied hard, they would not be in the position they are in now. May not really be a big deal, and people should have a thicker skin than that, but you really can't see how anybody would be offended?


I don't think romo meant "if I study, then I won't have this problem at OCI." I think he was just saying grades are one thing he can control/work on to try to avoid going through this. (along with networking, bidding well etc etc) But he just mentioned the grades part.

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General Tso
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby General Tso » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:18 pm

Mal wrote:
General Tso wrote:Grades shouldn't be a source of pride for anyone these days, IMO. If you aren't top 10% then there isn't anything to brag about anyway. Kinda like bragging about getting straight A's in the 2nd grade.


This is one of the most offensive things I have ever seen on this site.

Not only are you deriding people who were successful in one of the most competitive academic programs, but you did it in a thread that is about people who struck out (and thus are unlikely to be as successful).

People should be proud of their grades, regardless of whether they ended median or top10%.


Not sure if this is serious...if so you haven't been around TLS for long. I didn't mean this in an offensive way, I only meant to say that grades should not be a source of pride nor should they be a reason to brag. If you ace school and land a prestigious job, then maybe. But I am the kind of person who prides himself on having no pride whatsoever. :D (pun intended)

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KMaine
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby KMaine » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:22 pm

This is the last thing I will say on this, b/c I have no problem with Romo and O.S. is running a great and helpful thread. Romo has said what his intention was. I believe him. To me it is a philosophical point, not a matter of hurt feelings or anything. Just saying, some people may not take it great when another person says "I will use your stories to motivate me so that I can try to avoid ending up like you." The fact that people cannot see that the comment would be taken that way (no matter how it was intended) is strange to me.

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wiseowl
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby wiseowl » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:29 pm

sometimes I feel like we would all benefit from just shutting down this section of the site for a few weeks.

every single well-intentioned thread turns into a bitchfight by the 5th or 6th page without failure. everyone's just too strung out right now to be reasonable.

rynabrius
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby rynabrius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:35 pm

To people who have been successful @ OCI -- to what do you attribute your success?

To people who have been less successful -- to what do you attribute your relative lack of success?

Please be as specific as possible.

Anonymous User
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Re: Striking out at OCI- a frank discussion

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:51 pm

rynabrius wrote:To people who have been successful @ OCI -- to what do you attribute your success?

To people who have been less successful -- to what do you attribute your relative lack of success?

Please be as specific as possible.


If you are a 1L what you need to do is focus on grades 100%. There is nothing you have more control over at this point than your grades after 1L year. You can't get any more WE at this point and your 1L summer really isn't too important so long as it is something. Maybe a CoA type gig your 1L year would give a boost but I would not worry about getting the most prestigious 1L job and just focus on grades 100%. If you sacrifice studying to do job apps or internships during the semester etc. you are doing yourself a disservice. I wouldn't say that my 1 offer makes me an oci success so much as an oci lucky winner. But I can tell you with a great deal of confidence that the reason I got my one offer was because of grades. Of course, as was mentioned above, even with 10% grades you may strike out - but if you are looking for the best way to give yourself the best chance then its practice tests, practice tests, practice tests until you are blue in the face.
The only other piece of advice I would offer is to go all out on the law review write-on competition. Do not do what I did and drink away the first two-three days of the competition because you are so excited to be done with finals. You can make LR with median grades if you stand out, and the boost you get from LR is very significant. It seems like most people on LR with my grades are looking at 3+ offers, so its a big deal if you can make it.




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