Feeling like a failure

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Anonymous User
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I interviewed for firms last year, and from what I saw, the effect of LR depended largely on your grades. If you had the grades to grade-on, you did extremely well. If you got on LR because of your writing abilities, you either struck out or had offers from firms not nearly as good as those who graded on. That was just what I observed.


This is exactly the case for me. I wrote on to LR and had a decent number of interviews with a great range of firms but I didn't get a single cb from a firm above V40. Meanwhile the top 10% with LR were getting interviews and cbs left and right, as well as offers to match.

BlueDiamond
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby BlueDiamond » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:32 pm

I'm a 0L and I'm sure that I'll get ripped on for posting here.

But, I also agree that the doomsday mentality is a little overplayed on these forums. Not everyone goes to law school for the purpose of making $160k a year; but the most active people on here usually do. There are definitely law schools outside the T14 that are worth attending and it certainly is possible to get a job. Whether or not you go to a T14 school or get hired at a V100 firm doesn't define who you are or who you can be with hard work. Reading posts about being unemployable are also ridiculous. Yes the market sucks right now but there are jobs out there. So, OP you can get a job just maybe not a V100 job right now. Why not clerk or do government work? Not only would it be good experience, but may open even more doors to firms you'd like to work at when the economy turns around. Just an opinion (I could do without nasty comments in response to this).

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MrKappus
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby MrKappus » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:37 pm

lol at clerking and government work as fallback positions....

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Objection
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Objection » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:38 pm

MrKappus wrote:lol at clerking and government work as fallback positions....


While 0L is a bit off the mark there, his general sentiment is spot on.

lawschoollll
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby lawschoollll » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:46 pm

BlueDiamond wrote:I'm a 0L and I'm sure that I'll get ripped on for posting here.

But, I also agree that the doomsday mentality is a little overplayed on these forums. Not everyone goes to law school for the purpose of making $160k a year; but the most active people on here usually do. There are definitely law schools outside the T14 that are worth attending and it certainly is possible to get a job. Whether or not you go to a T14 school or get hired at a V100 firm doesn't define who you are or who you can be with hard work. Reading posts about being unemployable are also ridiculous. Yes the market sucks right now but there are jobs out there. So, OP you can get a job just maybe not a V100 job right now. Why not clerk or do government work? Not only would it be good experience, but may open even more doors to firms you'd like to work at when the economy turns around. Just an opinion (I could do without nasty comments in response to this).

Yea bro just go do JAG or DOJ!!

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:49 pm

animalcrkrs wrote:Otherwise I agree with this post, OP you just have to keep a positive attitude and go balls to the wall with mass mailers, connections and other tactics. Maybe pick up that tome Guerrilla Tactics book? Something in that 3000 pages MUST be of some use lol.


I read it cover-to-cover over the summer. I liked it, but then I got 0 CBs. And I'm at HYS (below median, admittedly.) So yes, there are no guarantees.

Similarly--

MrKappus wrote:lol at clerking and government work as fallback positions....


Absolutely correct. There is no escape from under the shadow of the gunner, with the possible exceptions of DUI defense and slip-and-fall. (Running to other fields will not save you, because you'll be overqualified, of course.)

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:52 pm

BlueDiamond wrote:I'm a 0L and I'm sure that I'll get ripped on for posting here.

But, I also agree that the doomsday mentality is a little overplayed on these forums. Not everyone goes to law school for the purpose of making $160k a year; but the most active people on here usually do. There are definitely law schools outside the T14 that are worth attending and it certainly is possible to get a job. Whether or not you go to a T14 school or get hired at a V100 firm doesn't define who you are or who you can be with hard work. Reading posts about being unemployable are also ridiculous. Yes the market sucks right now but there are jobs out there. So, OP you can get a job just maybe not a V100 job right now. Why not clerk or do government work? Not only would it be good experience, but may open even more doors to firms you'd like to work at when the economy turns around. Just an opinion (I could do without nasty comments in response to this).


the mind-set of many people before entering law school (myself included) was "well i'll try for the $160k biglaw jobs and if i don't succeed i can always work for the government/clerk... there has to be SOME legal work i could to go gain experience." however, there simply are not jobs out there. federal government hires only a handful of law school grads through their honors programs, many state level DA/Public Defenders offices don't hire out of law school (and the ones that do are extremely competitive), and public interest groups are flooded right now with applications from deferred/laid off associates. additionally, smaller firms rarely hire entry-level law school grads, let alone have the resources to train someone, so although it may happen occasionally, transitioning from small firm to Biglaw is very, very rare. when you say "clerk" i assume you don't mean clerking with a judge, because those are practically impossible to get without top grades from a top school (people on law review at my T20 were getting 0 clerkship interviews out of 100+ applications).

if the biglaw door is closed, i think the most viable option now is mid-sized law firms in secondary markets (ideally secondary markets where there are no especially strong law schools in the region - so not in texas or california). OP - find midsize (anywhere from 70-300 attorney) firms in secondary markets you have any sort of ties to and start mass mailing them. you need to find firms that aren't too small that they don't have formal summer programs, but not too large that they're no everyone's radars. A lot of those firms in secondary markets would be THRILLED to have a t14 grad as they hire primarily from their local school. i don't know where you have ties to, but heres a few examples of the type of firms i'm talking about: ater wynn in oregon, cavanaugh firm in phoenix, baker sterchi/spencer fane in missouri, watley drake in alabam etc. etc. etc.

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Objection
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Objection » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:53 pm

OP, are you in a serious amount of debt? If not, there are so many options.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:57 pm

Objection wrote:OP, are you in a serious amount of debt? If not, there are so many options.


Absurd debt. Probably more than most people on here.

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Objection
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Objection » Fri Oct 01, 2010 2:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:OP, are you in a serious amount of debt? If not, there are so many options.


Absurd debt. Probably more than most people on here.


As someone who will be around $250k in debt, I can understand why it feels like the sky is falling.

Have you looked into taking a lower paying job and using IBR?

http://www.ibrinfo.org/

You can probably still find something paying $100k+ if you look hard enough.

Try going to NALP, searching by firms that hire 2Ls, with entry level salaries starting at $100k. There are tons of firms on there, and I bet quite a few would love to have a t14 grad.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 2:25 pm

^^^ Hitting up smaller firms is credited.

Try firms in secondary cities in the same state as whatever major market you're in.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 2:27 pm

Gawd, I get tired of this doomsday crap. What about the guy who chooses to go to a school ranked 50-70, does pretty well, doesn't even attempt to write-on to law review because he just isn't interested in it/has better things to do and makes no apologies for it, and ends up with multiple offers from a mix of large- and mid-sized firms in one of the biggest legal markets in the U.S. (Me, and I'm sure that I'm not the only one)?


Congrats, you're special and highly unusual.

lawschoollll
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby lawschoollll » Fri Oct 01, 2010 2:35 pm

Whateverdude wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you are a 0L considering law school- don't do it unless you can make it into the top half of the T14. Even if you are top x%, law review, etc... there are no guarantees.....


Gawd, I get tired of this doomsday crap. What about the guy who chooses to go to a school ranked 50-70, does pretty well, doesn't even attempt to write-on to law review because he just isn't interested in it/has better things to do and makes no apologies for it, and ends up with multiple offers from a mix of large- and mid-sized firms in one of the biggest legal markets in the U.S. (Me, and I'm sure that I'm not the only one)?

There are never guarantees. The problem is that people assume that there are. OP, you aren't a loser just because you didn't land a dream job your first time out. You should not waste your time pitying yourself and/or lamenting the fact that you went to law school. It's kind of ridiculous. Find out what hurt you (not enough Work/Life Experience, etc.), re-assess, and get after it again. It may be that you might have to (Gasp!) pay your dues in a non-V100 firm. So what? As my mom used to say: There are children in China who don't have enough food to eat.

So...What should you do? Keep Calm, Carry On. But whatever you do, for godsakes, stop boo-hoo'ing. It is a complete waste of time.

Congrats on your URM status.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby worldtraveler » Fri Oct 01, 2010 3:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
No that's the problem. I'm a good interviewer. Everyone I've done practice interviews with has said so, and it seemed like my callback went really really well. I just don't understand.

And as for school, I'd prefer not to specify beyond the general group.


To be fair, OCS doesn't know a damn thing.

At least here, OCS thinks the best interviewers are ones who never say "um" and have rehearsed every answer for every possible question, and ask the routine questions every other student asks.

I personally think there is something to being yourself and less plastic.

In my best interviews, we spent the entire time talking about football.


Yeah, I had interviews like that. Didn't seem to go anywhere.

My callback interviewers seemed to really like me. All of the interviews went over... I left an hour later than I was supposed to.

What do I have to show for it? Diddly squat. Apparently you can have decent grades at a good school, be personable and friendly, and nobody gives a flying f.


It actually rather amazes me that anyone thinks this entitles them to a job.

Good luck OP, but it sounds like you're going to have to suck it up and apply everywhere. OCIP is an anomaly. Most jobs don't just fall into your lap and then let you walk into an offer after one summer.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Whateverdude » Fri Oct 01, 2010 5:01 pm

lawschoollll wrote:Congrats on your URM status.


Sorry, Bud. I'm as white and as male as can be (though I bet it would do wonders for your fragile little ego if I weren't). I am also not disabled or generally piteous. I guess my success is just dumb luck! /sarcasm

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 01, 2010 6:07 pm

law review is just one more line item in the overall package, that's consistent with people w/ WE doing very well job-wise.

They stand out from the college->law school folks, who btw benefit by getting big law money at an early age

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:T14, just outside of top 1/3. Have only one firm left from OCI, with which I had CB two weeks ago. Heard the hiring committee was meeting on Wednesday, still haven't gotten a call, feeling depressed.

Strike out here I come...


T14, top 1/3ish, good to very good WE, 0 biglaw callbacks out of OCI. Zero. None. I have friends just above median who at least got one or two. I swear I'm not some kind of horrible antisocial freak.

I guess pleasant really doesn't cut it. Everyone was so obsessed with grades 1L year that, when mine turned out good, I thought I had lucked out and avoided the miserable consequences of my unwise decision to go to law school. I've scraped together a couple callbacks outside of biglaw, mock-interviewed with the career people to make sure I wasn't doing something horribly offensive, and even talked to interviewers that dinged me. I didn't actually ask whether it was my interviewing that dinged me or something else, but I have received principally "You do great, you're really enthusiastic, your answers tend to be kinda long". (I had done a mock interview before, right before a 1L summer interview, and received a similar comment, but in a "That was overall pretty good, though; just do that again and you'll be fine.") Is that enough for me to be subaverage in the stupid 1 to 5 evaluation form? I can't remember, but I don't think I was like ranting for 10 minutes straight. At most, I would respond to questions with little pitches. Like if it was, "So I see you worked at XYZ, how was that?", I might give a little three-point pitch on how that experience prepared me for corporate law. I've since changed it more to "Oh, it was great, I liked A and the chance to work on my B skills. (stop and let them respond)". If that improvement would have saved me, ... I am not sure I ever want to find out what caused my failure at OCI, because if it was THAT subtle, I am plunging straight into madness. Really? REALLY? Being nervous at a 20 minute interview trumps everything else? Who are these fuckers telling us to study hard? We should be doing interview workshops or something.

Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me, or maybe my classmates all studiously researched their firms or something. I'm just feeling /self all the time. I'm applying to secondary markets and such, and yeah, it'll probably be okay, but (and I hope this isn't too snobby) I had kind of looked forward to the magical biglaw high life callbacks thing where you get to feel all important and professional flying coast to coast in fancy clothes.

I wish I had mass-mailed BigLaw before OCI. My life could be so different right now. I wish I had applied to more markets. But I thought things were going to be okay.

Anyway, OP, you are not alone by any means. I think a lot of us had the material to be successful with OCI and through one mistake or another wasted it. We'll probably still be okay.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:56 pm

Protip: reading TLS is such a poor idea right now. I just numbly click through page after page of "about median at T14, 20 interviews in SF/Chi, 6 callbacks, 4 offers from V-Whatever firms" and come out of it two hours later with way too much work to do and feeling much worse.

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wiseowl
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby wiseowl » Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:58 pm

Whateverdude wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you are a 0L considering law school- don't do it unless you can make it into the top half of the T14. Even if you are top x%, law review, etc... there are no guarantees.....


Gawd, I get tired of this doomsday crap. What about the guy who chooses to go to a school ranked 50-70, does pretty well, doesn't even attempt to write-on to law review because he just isn't interested in it/has better things to do and makes no apologies for it, and ends up with multiple offers from a mix of large- and mid-sized firms in one of the biggest legal markets in the U.S. (Me, and I'm sure that I'm not the only one)?

There are never guarantees. The problem is that people assume that there are. OP, you aren't a loser just because you didn't land a dream job your first time out. You should not waste your time pitying yourself and/or lamenting the fact that you went to law school. It's kind of ridiculous. Find out what hurt you (not enough Work/Life Experience, etc.), re-assess, and get after it again. It may be that you might have to (Gasp!) pay your dues in a non-V100 firm. So what? As my mom used to say: There are children in China who don't have enough food to eat.

So...What should you do? Keep Calm, Carry On. But whatever you do, for godsakes, stop boo-hoo'ing. It is a complete waste of time.


I'm going to guess that "doing pretty well" means top 1 or 2 students at Georgia State = Atlanta midlaw to 190!!!

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 05, 2010 12:06 am

Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me


This killed you. Market choice was INCREDIBLY important this year. I have a V5 offer in NYC but couldn't even get a callback at Jones Day, Steptoe, and Sidley DC.

In DC you'll have all the people with good grades at HYS competing with you. "Pleasant" doesn't cut it. Top 1/3 at T14 can get a DC offer, but you need to have some hook (relevant WE) and kill the interview.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 05, 2010 12:10 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me

This killed you. Market choice was INCREDIBLY important this year. I have a V5 offer in NYC but couldn't even get a callback at Jones Day, Steptoe, and Sidley DC.

In DC you'll have all the people with good grades at HYS competing with you. "Pleasant" doesn't cut it. Top 1/3 at T14 can get a DC offer, but you need to have some hook (relevant WE) and kill the interview.

+1. I'm at HYS, got V10 in NYC but shut out of DC. DC is rough right now.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 05, 2010 12:30 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me

This killed you. Market choice was INCREDIBLY important this year. I have a V5 offer in NYC but couldn't even get a callback at Jones Day, Steptoe, and Sidley DC.

In DC you'll have all the people with good grades at HYS competing with you. "Pleasant" doesn't cut it. Top 1/3 at T14 can get a DC offer, but you need to have some hook (relevant WE) and kill the interview.

+1. I'm at HYS, got V10 in NYC but shut out of DC. DC is rough right now.


I've heard all kinds of people state with absolute conviction that one must never, ever "shotgun" markets, because it leaves you empty-handed. Is this true? If so, why? Is it just for the "so what other areas are you looking at?" questions? I've only been asked that a few times.

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180orbust
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby 180orbust » Tue Oct 05, 2010 12:33 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:T14, just outside of top 1/3. Have only one firm left from OCI, with which I had CB two weeks ago. Heard the hiring committee was meeting on Wednesday, still haven't gotten a call, feeling depressed.

Strike out here I come...


T14, top 1/3ish, good to very good WE, 0 biglaw callbacks out of OCI. Zero. None. I have friends just above median who at least got one or two. I swear I'm not some kind of horrible antisocial freak.

I guess pleasant really doesn't cut it. Everyone was so obsessed with grades 1L year that, when mine turned out good, I thought I had lucked out and avoided the miserable consequences of my unwise decision to go to law school. I've scraped together a couple callbacks outside of biglaw, mock-interviewed with the career people to make sure I wasn't doing something horribly offensive, and even talked to interviewers that dinged me. I didn't actually ask whether it was my interviewing that dinged me or something else, but I have received principally "You do great, you're really enthusiastic, your answers tend to be kinda long". (I had done a mock interview before, right before a 1L summer interview, and received a similar comment, but in a "That was overall pretty good, though; just do that again and you'll be fine.") Is that enough for me to be subaverage in the stupid 1 to 5 evaluation form? I can't remember, but I don't think I was like ranting for 10 minutes straight. At most, I would respond to questions with little pitches. Like if it was, "So I see you worked at XYZ, how was that?", I might give a little three-point pitch on how that experience prepared me for corporate law. I've since changed it more to "Oh, it was great, I liked A and the chance to work on my B skills. (stop and let them respond)". If that improvement would have saved me, ... I am not sure I ever want to find out what caused my failure at OCI, because if it was THAT subtle, I am plunging straight into madness. Really? REALLY? Being nervous at a 20 minute interview trumps everything else? Who are these fuckers telling us to study hard? We should be doing interview workshops or something.

Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me, or maybe my classmates all studiously researched their firms or something. I'm just feeling /self all the time. I'm applying to secondary markets and such, and yeah, it'll probably be okay, but (and I hope this isn't too snobby) I had kind of looked forward to the magical biglaw high life callbacks thing where you get to feel all important and professional flying coast to coast in fancy clothes.

I wish I had mass-mailed BigLaw before OCI. My life could be so different right now. I wish I had applied to more markets. But I thought things were going to be okay.

Anyway, OP, you are not alone by any means. I think a lot of us had the material to be successful with OCI and through one mistake or another wasted it. We'll probably still be okay.


Wow. I read a lot of self-righteous, sanctimonious crap on this website that makes me question whether I've completely lost my soul. But this is powerful; a rare moment of sincere humanity expressing itself behind "Anonymous User." I feel really moved. This Law School shit is a bitch. You're not a failure, and your day will come.

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rayiner
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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby rayiner » Tue Oct 05, 2010 1:57 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Maybe it was stupid luck + aiming for hard markets like DC that killed me

This killed you. Market choice was INCREDIBLY important this year. I have a V5 offer in NYC but couldn't even get a callback at Jones Day, Steptoe, and Sidley DC.

In DC you'll have all the people with good grades at HYS competing with you. "Pleasant" doesn't cut it. Top 1/3 at T14 can get a DC offer, but you need to have some hook (relevant WE) and kill the interview.

+1. I'm at HYS, got V10 in NYC but shut out of DC. DC is rough right now.


I've heard all kinds of people state with absolute conviction that one must never, ever "shotgun" markets, because it leaves you empty-handed. Is this true? If so, why? Is it just for the "so what other areas are you looking at?" questions? I've only been asked that a few times.


It's because it's difficult to fully cover your bases in multiple markets with only 10-15 bids.

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Re: Feeling like a failure

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 05, 2010 9:05 am

DC was a bloodbath this year....

I go to a school in DC, and I'm originally from the DC area with no ties to anywhere else, aka I'm screwed




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