Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

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Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 14, 2010 6:32 pm

Will it hurt or help come offer time at the end of the summer? I have heard mixed feelings.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Oct 14, 2010 6:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Will it hurt or help come offer time at the end of the summer? I have heard mixed feelings.

On one extreme, you could intend to be a litigator, and be on a Supreme Court litigation clinic that's actually handling research and drafting for a case at the Supreme Court level, which would give you valuable experience and insight you could talk about while you're at the firm over the summer.

On the other extreme, you could tell everyone on callbacks you're sure you want to be a litigator, and then go take a year-long transactional clinic. That would probably raise more than a few eyebrows.

In the middle is a big huge sea of stuff you can do where firms won't greatly care either way because they know they'll have to teach you everything you need to know once you get there.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 15, 2010 8:54 am

Taking a PI clinic now and had multiple people ask me about it during interviews, especially because I have a lot of relevant PI on my resume. I had a good explanation for why I didn't want PI, but also said that I was doing the clinic because it's something I find meaningful, despite not wanting it upon graduation. Didn't preclude me from getting offers for SA positions, don't expect it to even come into consideration at the end of the summer.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:09 am

Anonymous User wrote:Taking a PI clinic now and had multiple people ask me about it during interviews, especially because I have a lot of relevant PI on my resume. I had a good explanation for why I didn't want PI, but also said that I was doing the clinic because it's something I find meaningful, despite not wanting it upon graduation. Didn't preclude me from getting offers for SA positions, don't expect it to even come into consideration at the end of the summer.


OP here. That is what I thought, I already have a good offer for an SA, but was told by Career Services that sometimes taking a clinic makes it look like you are trying to take a semester off and can be looked negatively on by the firm. I really thought it was kind of crazy, because I will be taking two rigorous classes with it that put me on the very heavy side of credits. In addition, I would think my summer work-product is a heck of a lot more important than whether or not I took a clinic spring semester. My school has a nationally ranked clinical program, and sometimes it takes multiple semesters to get in, so I just don't want to waste the semester's application and risk never getting a chance to participate.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:13 am

You have a summer associate offer, right? This is for 2L summer? You're taking a clinic 2L year? Assuming the answer is "yes," to all these questions, the firm won't care.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Ahhhnold » Fri Oct 15, 2010 2:41 pm

What about a 3L clinic in the fall after a full-time offer was given and accepted at the end of the summer? Would you have to run that by your firm before taking part in a clinic?

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby 2009 Prospective » Fri Oct 15, 2010 2:51 pm

Ahhhnold wrote:What about a 3L clinic in the fall after a full-time offer was given and accepted at the end of the summer? Would you have to run that by your firm before taking part in a clinic?


Why the hell would you need to ask your firm for permission to engage in a clinic 3L? I don't think the firm really gives a shit for the most part what you do your 3L year as long as you come out with a law degree and eventually pass the bar. This whole thread doesn't make any sense. If the topic even ever came up, it's pretty easy to spin clinic participation as a means for developing actual practical skills which you will take with you to the firm as an associate.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby vamedic03 » Fri Oct 15, 2010 4:10 pm

Ahhhnold wrote:What about a 3L clinic in the fall after a full-time offer was given and accepted at the end of the summer? Would you have to run that by your firm before taking part in a clinic?


Not unless you have to run by the rest of your schedule with them . . . If your firm is offended that you spent 3 credits on a clinic versus Law and Russian Literature . . .

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 15, 2010 4:40 pm

Clinics during 3L don't matter, but you'll probably have to go through a conflicts check again before starting full-time.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Ahhhnold » Sat Oct 16, 2010 8:05 am

Anonymous User wrote:Clinics during 3L don't matter, but you'll probably have to go through a conflicts check again before starting full-time.


What is the "conflicts check" procedure? I know what it means, but what do you have to do to when it comes time to see if you have any conflicts?

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby rando » Sat Oct 16, 2010 9:15 am

Ahhhnold wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Clinics during 3L don't matter, but you'll probably have to go through a conflicts check again before starting full-time.


What is the "conflicts check" procedure? I know what it means, but what do you have to do to when it comes time to see if you have any conflicts?


Just tell them the matters that you worked on. They have a routine form they will give you. Write down the parties and the matter. They do the rest.

This thread is a bit paranoid. Law firms generally don't care about what classes you take your 2L/3L year so long as your grades don't drop precipitously (even then it probably won't affect you).

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Oct 16, 2010 9:48 am

rando wrote:
Ahhhnold wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Clinics during 3L don't matter, but you'll probably have to go through a conflicts check again before starting full-time.


What is the "conflicts check" procedure? I know what it means, but what do you have to do to when it comes time to see if you have any conflicts?


Just tell them the matters that you worked on. They have a routine form they will give you. Write down the parties and the matter. They do the rest.

This thread is a bit paranoid. Law firms generally don't care about what classes you take your 2L/3L year so long as your grades don't drop precipitously (even then it probably won't affect you).



Of course it it paranoid, but isn't a substantial chunk of these boards paranoid? I can affirmatively tell you I hadn't given a second thought to signing up for a clinic next semester, but was informed by career services some firms in "tougher markets" will hold this against you as "costing" per se come offer time. Needless to say, I thought long and hard about this, decided I really want the practical experience prior to my summer to warm up in my research and writing, and still decided to sign up.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Ahhhnold » Sat Oct 16, 2010 9:52 am

Anonymous User wrote:
rando wrote:
Ahhhnold wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Clinics during 3L don't matter, but you'll probably have to go through a conflicts check again before starting full-time.


What is the "conflicts check" procedure? I know what it means, but what do you have to do to when it comes time to see if you have any conflicts?


Just tell them the matters that you worked on. They have a routine form they will give you. Write down the parties and the matter. They do the rest.

This thread is a bit paranoid. Law firms generally don't care about what classes you take your 2L/3L year so long as your grades don't drop precipitously (even then it probably won't affect you).



Of course it it paranoid, but isn't a substantial chunk of these boards paranoid? I can affirmatively tell you I hadn't given a second thought to signing up for a clinic next semester, but was informed by career services some firms in "tougher markets" will hold this against you as "costing" per se come offer time. Needless to say, I thought long and hard about this, decided I really want the practical experience prior to my summer to warm up in my research and writing, and still decided to sign up.


I wish we had 2L clinics to prepare for the SA, only available for 3Ls unfortunately.

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Oct 16, 2010 9:57 am

This probably isn't the case for BigLaw, but I know that some clinic experience is an asset for at least some mid-sized firms.

At my school we are required to take a clinic before graduation. I'm planning on doing one 3L year and haven't even thought about which clinic I want to take, which definitely hurt me when a mid-sized firm interviewer asked about it

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Re: Law Firms' Perceptions of Taking a Clinic

Postby rando » Sat Oct 16, 2010 10:08 am

Anonymous User wrote:
rando wrote:
This thread is a bit paranoid. Law firms generally don't care about what classes you take your 2L/3L year so long as your grades don't drop precipitously (even then it probably won't affect you).



Of course it it paranoid, but isn't a substantial chunk of these boards paranoid? I can affirmatively tell you I hadn't given a second thought to signing up for a clinic next semester, but was informed by career services some firms in "tougher markets" will hold this against you as "costing" per se come offer time. Needless to say, I thought long and hard about this, decided I really want the practical experience prior to my summer to warm up in my research and writing, and still decided to sign up.


Just because a lot of stuff on TLS is paranoid doesn't justify baseless paranoia. I'm sure career services has some justification for saying that but it is nothing I have ever heard.

I don't know what tougher markets has to do with it if you mean Chi/DC etc. But if you mean "tougher markets" as in those that were hit harder than others and need to reduce offers, then I seriously doubt they would look at a clinic and think you were "coasting." Not to mention, those markets should have sorted out their hiring issues by now.

More importantly, biglaw firms just don't seem to care if you coast. It is a rare story to hear of someone getting no offered due to grades. Many firms don't even look at transcripts for 2L year. I would be absolutely shocked if firms don't generally care about you maintaining grades but care that you are getting practical experience in a clinic.

If we were talking about fed clerkships, then maybe consider the effect.




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