Academic year internship/job - decision time

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Academic year internship/job - decision time

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 06, 2010 7:08 pm

I was told by a government agency that if my references check out (which they will), I've got a spring internship with them. I was also told basically the same thing thing by a small law firm. The problem is that the government will get back to me post-reference check in the next couple of days; the small law firm will take over a week, and I'm not sure that I'll be able to hold the internship offer open for that long. I don't want to turn down the internship in case the small firm decides they don't want me, but I also don't know if I want to commit myself to the internship when I could potentially get the other job. I realize that this is all speculative, but given the timing, I might have to make a decision before I have both offers in hand.

I'm torn. Here's the summary:

Pros: nice people, promise of client contact and very exciting (to me) issues, doing EXACTLY the kind of work that I want to be doing, and I can see myself working for that agency (or a similar one) in the future. In fact, that's kind of my dream.
Cons: Unpaid, for credit only (I don't have a 2L SA gig lined up, so money is a huge concern), and they don't hire students straight out of law school.

Small law firm
Pros: super duper nice people; paid very well for a part-time job, and they'd want to keep me until graduation, including my 2L summer.
Cons: a very specific practice area (I don't know if I want to be pigeonholed like that), a lot of work will be very mundane, they want a pretty significant time commitment during the school year, and there's no chance of post-graduation employment (though I wouldn't want to take a permanent position there anyway).

So it basically comes down to interest v. money. Ideas?

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

Re: Academic year internship/job - decision time

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 06, 2010 7:23 pm

That's a really hard choice. All of the government agencies I talked to (all federal) told me that they went by NALP standards, so they should let you hold it open. I guess the question is (a) how much do you need the money (don't know your specific financial situation), and (b) would you be able to line something else up for the summer?

Is it possible that you could work for the firm this spring/summer, and then take the internship in the fall? I think that most government agencies that take interns in the spring also have fall programs (and hey they've already offered you the job once...) Just tell them your situation and they'll understand if they are reasonable.

Really tough situation...

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