Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

(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.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:14 am

My grades have discouraged me from applying to jobs. I'm sitting at the top of the bell curve, and I'm not doing patent law. Obviously, big law and competitive government jobs are out of the question. But it'd still be swell to have a legal position lined up this summer. Which legal employment options, if any, are realistically obtainable for a median student at a non-T14 right now?

User avatar
Dr. Van Nostrand
Posts: 109
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:42 pm

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Dr. Van Nostrand » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:04 am

Anonymous User wrote:My grades have discouraged me from applying to jobs. I'm sitting at the top of the bell curve, and I'm not doing patent law. Obviously, big law and competitive government jobs are out of the question. But it'd still be swell to have a legal position lined up this summer. Which legal employment options, if any, are realistically obtainable for a median student at a non-T14 right now?


Well, to be blunt, you are not going to know until you start applying ... and the later you go before you apply, the slimmer your options are going to be. You really need to get on this now, the longer you wait the more of an uphill battle you are going to face. Apply to PI fellowships, small firms in your area, etc. But do it NOW.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:09 am

(Not OP)
Anyone know what the salary breakdown is for small firms that might be hiring now or start hiring soon? Martindale doesn't seem to give that information. My hazy best guess based on comments is that most are 50-60K for BigLaw hours, with a few more like 80K. But are there near-market firms that will start hiring soon?
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
XxSpyKEx
Posts: 1741
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2006 5:48 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby XxSpyKEx » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Anyone know what the salary breakdown is for small firms that might be hiring now or start hiring soon? Martindale doesn't seem to give that information. My hazy best guess based on comments is that most are 50-60K for BigLaw hours, with a few more like 80K. But are there near-market firms that will start hiring soon?


Your goal should just be to find some type of legal employment this summer, as oppose to worrying about what they pay associates. Small firm salaries vary greatly, and a lot of them aren't going to make you an offer as an associate by the end of the summer anyways (because most small firms can't predict their demand that far out, and even if they can, they simply might not need anyone else new -- there are plenty of small firms that hire people just for a summer). There's small firms that pay $160k+ /year. There's also small firms that pay $10 /hr to new associates. There's no way to generalize a "salary breakdown" for all small firms in all markets simply based on the fact that it is a small firm. Unfortunetely, there is really no way to figure out what a firm pays their new associates until you actually get an offer either. You can speculate, but that's really the best you can do.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:34 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone know what the salary breakdown is for small firms that might be hiring now or start hiring soon? Martindale doesn't seem to give that information. My hazy best guess based on comments is that most are 50-60K for BigLaw hours, with a few more like 80K. But are there near-market firms that will start hiring soon?


Your goal should just be to find some type of legal employment this summer, as oppose to worrying about what they pay associates. Small firm salaries vary greatly, and a lot of them aren't going to make you an offer as an associate by the end of the summer anyways (because most small firms can't predict their demand that far out, and even if they can, they simply might not need anyone else new -- there are plenty of small firms that hire people just for a summer). There's small firms that pay $160k+ /year. There's also small firms that pay $10 /hr to new associates. There's no way to generalize a "salary breakdown" for all small firms in all markets simply based on the fact that it is a small firm. Unfortunetely, there is really no way to figure out what a firm pays their new associates until you actually get an offer either. You can speculate, but that's really the best you can do.


(Not OP)
I appreciate the info. To be honest, though, if these jobs don't promise post-graduate employment (or even give a very good chance of it), I might just swallow my pride and go straight for the kind of work I want to do. My school's LRAP seems pretty good. Although I feel like not having that little "associate, blahblah awesomefirm" tag on my resume will brand me as sketchy even outside of BigLaw. If nothing else, because no one would believe that someone with my grades and my school ended up missing the BigLaw boat (or if they are willing to believe that, they'll assume it's explained by me being some kind of incredible one-in-a-thousand jerk).

In other words, it seems (based on your post) that if you aren't getting biglaw, you should go for some kind of government position: neither guarantees a job, but each pay something, and at least the government position will maybe help you sell yourself to a good post-grad government employer (big question mark?).
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Unshake
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 3:00 pm

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Unshake » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:50 pm

To OP:

Could you PM me about your school? I'm considering similar schools (MN, WI, IA, IL, etc..) and wondering what general career prospects are.

User avatar
rayiner
Posts: 6184
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby rayiner » Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:57 pm

If nothing else, because no one would believe that someone with my grades and my school ended up missing the BigLaw boat (or if they are willing to believe that, they'll assume it's explained by me being some kind of incredible one-in-a-thousand jerk).


What on earth are you talking about? People ITE are completely unfazed by reports of top 1/4 people at T14s striking out at OCI. Median at a T30... people would be very surprised if you *did* get a biglaw job.

User avatar
XxSpyKEx
Posts: 1741
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2006 5:48 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby XxSpyKEx » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
XxSpyKEx wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone know what the salary breakdown is for small firms that might be hiring now or start hiring soon? Martindale doesn't seem to give that information. My hazy best guess based on comments is that most are 50-60K for BigLaw hours, with a few more like 80K. But are there near-market firms that will start hiring soon?


Your goal should just be to find some type of legal employment this summer, as oppose to worrying about what they pay associates. Small firm salaries vary greatly, and a lot of them aren't going to make you an offer as an associate by the end of the summer anyways (because most small firms can't predict their demand that far out, and even if they can, they simply might not need anyone else new -- there are plenty of small firms that hire people just for a summer). There's small firms that pay $160k+ /year. There's also small firms that pay $10 /hr to new associates. There's no way to generalize a "salary breakdown" for all small firms in all markets simply based on the fact that it is a small firm. Unfortunetely, there is really no way to figure out what a firm pays their new associates until you actually get an offer either. You can speculate, but that's really the best you can do.


I appreciate the info. To be honest, though, if these jobs don't promise post-graduate employment (or even give a very good chance of it), I might just swallow my pride and go straight for the kind of work I want to do. My school's LRAP seems pretty good. Although I feel like not having that little "associate, blahblah awesomefirm" tag on my resume will brand me as sketchy even outside of BigLaw. If nothing else, because no one would believe that someone with my grades and my school ended up missing the BigLaw boat (or if they are willing to believe that, they'll assume it's explained by me being some kind of incredible one-in-a-thousand jerk).

In other words, it seems (based on your post) that if you aren't getting biglaw, you should go for some kind of government position: neither guarantees a job, but each pay something, and at least the government position will maybe help you sell yourself to a good post-grad government employer (big question mark?).


It’s a tough call. I would guess most small firms won’t be able to offer you something just after one summer. However, there will be some small firms that will hire you for the summer and want you to stay on during your 3rd year and beyond (as a “law clerk”). Those firms might hire you as an associate when they need someone. But there’s really no guarantees there.

Also, it depends on what you mean by “government position.” If you mean federal government, then those jobs are WAY more competitive than biglaw, and most of the application deadlines have already passed. If you mean something like working at the local DA’s office, then that’s another thing (but I don’t think that’s what you meant since most DA’s offices don’t pay – actually a lot of the federal government summer positions don’t pay either). In all honestly, though, if you are serious about doing something PI related for you career, you are better off just going straight into it. Because of the economy and hiring freezes, PI is becoming really competitive nowadays, and by volunteering a summer it will at least demonstrate a genuine interest in that kind of work to employers that you will be applying to for post-graduate employment during your 3rd year. Also, a number of PI employers are more likely to hire someone who has volunteered there over someone who hasn’t (e.g. the Orange Country PD’s office does this).

User avatar
wiseowl
Posts: 1071
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 4:38 pm

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby wiseowl » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:54 pm

rayiner wrote:
If nothing else, because no one would believe that someone with my grades and my school ended up missing the BigLaw boat (or if they are willing to believe that, they'll assume it's explained by me being some kind of incredible one-in-a-thousand jerk).


What on earth are you talking about? People ITE are completely unfazed by reports of top 1/4 people at T14s striking out at OCI. Median at a T30... people would be very surprised if you *did* get a biglaw job.


Completely. I shudder to think what this school's OCS is telling their students if median students are feeling like people will look down on them for not getting Biglaw. Talk to the law review people at CCN who don't.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 5:02 pm

If a future interviewer questions you about why you don't have BigLaw, and doesn't buy your explanation that you couldn't get an ultra-competitive position in the worst economic period of your life, then examine whether you would want to work for someone that unreasonable

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 7:56 pm

wiseowl wrote:
rayiner wrote:What on earth are you talking about? People ITE are completely unfazed by reports of top 1/4 people at T14s striking out at OCI. Median at a T30... people would be very surprised if you *did* get a biglaw job.


Completely. I shudder to think what this school's OCS is telling their students if median students are feeling like people will look down on them for not getting Biglaw. Talk to the law review people at CCN who don't.


(Not OP)
Well, I guess I am in the T30, but also in the T14, and other such subdivisions. (I'm also definitely not median, although I fall short of the top 10%, and I think the top 20% as well.) But yeah, I am thinking seriously about going straight into PI, because that's what I want to do. My current plan is something like:

1. Follow up my last leads on a "good" firm job in the places I want to work.
2. Talk to the government jobs advisor (I know they suck, but it's all I have at present...I'll try talking to upperclassmen afterwards) and see if anything worth doing is still open.
3. Go check out the PI stuff that's available, and consider whether or not I can be okay with living at my parent's house and working for free my fucking 2L summer. I've turned into that obnoxious trust fund slacker kid from college.
4. Keep caring about grades (fuuuuuck) and try to spruce up my resume with a journal and garbage like that.
5. ???
6. Profit
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Aqualibrium
Posts: 2011
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 5:57 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Aqualibrium » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:My grades have discouraged me from applying to jobs. I'm sitting at the top of the bell curve, and I'm not doing patent law. Obviously, big law and competitive government jobs are out of the question. But it'd still be swell to have a legal position lined up this summer. Which legal employment options, if any, are realistically obtainable for a median student at a non-T14 right now?



So instead of applying you sat around be discouraged?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
wiseowl wrote:
rayiner wrote:What on earth are you talking about? People ITE are completely unfazed by reports of top 1/4 people at T14s striking out at OCI. Median at a T30... people would be very surprised if you *did* get a biglaw job.


Completely. I shudder to think what this school's OCS is telling their students if median students are feeling like people will look down on them for not getting Biglaw. Talk to the law review people at CCN who don't.


Well, I guess I am in the T30, but also in the T14, and other such subdivisions. (I'm also definitely not median, although I fall short of the top 10%, and I think the top 20% as well.) But yeah, I am thinking seriously about going straight into PI, because that's what I want to do. My current plan is something like:

1. Follow up my last leads on a "good" firm job in the places I want to work.
2. Talk to the government jobs advisor (I know they suck, but it's all I have at present...I'll try talking to upperclassmen afterwards) and see if anything worth doing is still open.
3. Go check out the PI stuff that's available, and consider whether or not I can be okay with living at my parent's house and working for free my fucking 2L summer. I've turned into that obnoxious trust fund slacker kid from college.
4. Keep caring about grades (fuuuuuck) and try to spruce up my resume with a journal and garbage like that.
5. ???
6. Profit


Pretty sure rayiner and I both thought you were the OP.

As to your list, all of the above.

sissyclark
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby sissyclark » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:32 pm

This thread confused me. I had to go back and read post by post to see who said what. It was like reading the legislative history of a statute.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273252
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Options for a Median 2L in Midwestern T30 (LOL, I know)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:48 pm

sissyclark wrote:This thread confused me. I had to go back and read post by post to see who said what. It was like reading the legislative history of a statute.


(T14 interloper here.) Haha, yeah, sorry about that. I've gone back and tagged my posts as (Not OP).

Actually, though, I think the OP and I should probably be doing about the same thing right now. My grades are a little better and a magazine that plays puppetmaster with the legal profession thinks my school is slightly more "prestigious", but I don't think most firms (outside of a select few) are going to care that much.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.