9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

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Anonymous User
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9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:28 pm

Just got my first semester grades - 4.2. I'm at a school between 15-18. I sent out applications for externships before Xmas and got no bites. E-mailed grades to a judge who asked for them on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and got an immediate request for an interview. I didn't apply to any firms, and I've just started the application process because I think I have a shot with these grades. I'd prefer a Biglaw SA, but the chance to work for a 9th Circuit judge doesn't come up all the time.

What do you guys think? A bird in the hand? Or a shot in the dark at biglaw?

Aqualibrium
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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Aqualibrium » Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Just got my first semester grades - 4.2. I'm at a school between 15-18. I sent out applications for externships before Xmas and got no bites. E-mailed grades to a judge who asked for them on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and got an immediate request for an interview. I didn't apply to any firms, and I've just started the application process because I think I have a shot with these grades. I'd prefer a Biglaw SA, but the chance to work for a 9th Circuit judge doesn't come up all the time.

What do you guys think? A bird in the hand? Or a shot in the dark at biglaw?



Take the interview, but also start apply to any biglaw firm you can find that takes 1L's. Also apply to the larger firms back home (if that is an option for you). In this situation, that judge could very well be in a position to hire you as a clerk in the future. If you like him a lot after the interview, I'd take the job if offered.

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 12, 2011 12:35 am

Aqualibrium wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just got my first semester grades - 4.2. I'm at a school between 15-18. I sent out applications for externships before Xmas and got no bites. E-mailed grades to a judge who asked for them on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and got an immediate request for an interview. I didn't apply to any firms, and I've just started the application process because I think I have a shot with these grades. I'd prefer a Biglaw SA, but the chance to work for a 9th Circuit judge doesn't come up all the time.

What do you guys think? A bird in the hand? Or a shot in the dark at biglaw?



Take the interview, but also start apply to any biglaw firm you can find that takes 1L's. Also apply to the larger firms back home (if that is an option for you). In this situation, that judge could very well be in a position to hire you as a clerk in the future. If you like him a lot after the interview, I'd take the job if offered.


The problem is, I thought if a judge offers you a job, you have to take it? Is there a kosher way to tell a judge, "Thanks for the offer, I'll get back to you after I test the market further"?

Aqualibrium
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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Aqualibrium » Wed Jan 12, 2011 1:03 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just got my first semester grades - 4.2. I'm at a school between 15-18. I sent out applications for externships before Xmas and got no bites. E-mailed grades to a judge who asked for them on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, and got an immediate request for an interview. I didn't apply to any firms, and I've just started the application process because I think I have a shot with these grades. I'd prefer a Biglaw SA, but the chance to work for a 9th Circuit judge doesn't come up all the time.

What do you guys think? A bird in the hand? Or a shot in the dark at biglaw?



Take the interview, but also start apply to any biglaw firm you can find that takes 1L's. Also apply to the larger firms back home (if that is an option for you). In this situation, that judge could very well be in a position to hire you as a clerk in the future. If you like him a lot after the interview, I'd take the job if offered.


The problem is, I thought if a judge offers you a job, you have to take it? Is there a kosher way to tell a judge, "Thanks for the offer, I'll get back to you after I test the market further"?


Yeah, I considered that too. TBH, I don't have enough experience with it. My understanding is that applied more with clerkships, which this is not. It may just be taboo period though. If it is, which someone here will certainly tell you (GTL Review where are you?), weigh your desire to make some cash this summer against your desire to clerk in the future. With your grades, you'll be fine at OCI either way so long as you arent a douche bag.

Anonymous User
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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 12, 2011 2:07 am

I'm clerking on the 9th Circuit next year. If you want to PM me the name of the judge, I can provide clearer advice.

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 12, 2011 4:00 am

Do the interview, accept the job if offered. Afterward request permission to continue hunting for a firm job for half the summer. There's no downside: You either get a yes, and you hunt for a cool firm job, or a no, and you have a cool internship lined up that many would die to get.

If you're applying to Texas firms or have a VERY strong firm connection (prior work with a firm, prior work experience directly related to a practice, family connection, are an under represented minority applying for diversity programs with those creds) then consider going exclusively for a firm job.

I was in a very similar position last year, and I wound up doing half a summer with the judge and half with the firm. It was great. But you'd be amazed at how far having perfect academic credentials doesn't get you in the 1L firm job hunt. It's really much more about X factors listed above, and strong academic creds can push you over the line. You could be the exception to the rule, but these days JUST having perfect grades from a great school still makes 1L firm work a crapshoot.

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Do the interview, accept the job if offered. Afterward request permission to continue hunting for a firm job for half the summer. There's no downside: You either get a yes, and you hunt for a cool firm job, or a no, and you have a cool internship lined up that many would die to get.

If you're applying to Texas firms or have a VERY strong firm connection (prior work with a firm, prior work experience directly related to a practice, family connection, are an under represented minority applying for diversity programs with those creds) then consider going exclusively for a firm job.

I was in a very similar position last year, and I wound up doing half a summer with the judge and half with the firm. It was great. But you'd be amazed at how far having perfect academic credentials doesn't get you in the 1L firm job hunt. It's really much more about X factors listed above, and strong academic creds can push you over the line. You could be the exception to the rule, but these days JUST having perfect grades from a great school still makes 1L firm work a crapshoot.


OP here. Thank you so much for your advice.

Do you know if it's common for circuit court judges to allow split summers?

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dood
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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby dood » Wed Jan 12, 2011 10:33 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:Also, if the judge in question is Kozinski, Reinhardt, O'Scannlain, or W. Fletcher, you should schedule the interview tomorrow and accept for the whole summer at the first opening. Those guys a bullet point on your resume that says "United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit" can will open serious doors for you down the road--far moreso than any 1L SA job ever would.


the above edits reflect my experience.

also, 2 more points to think about:

- if you dont plan on clerking, this can be the experience of a lifetime - working in the chambers of a CoA judge isnt something a lot of law students get to do.

- even though a lot of judges won't hire previous interns as clerks, having that line on your resume will help your clerkship applications.

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Shaggier1
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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Shaggier1 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 2:22 pm

Split.

PS: Congrats on a steller start.

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 13, 2011 9:39 pm

OP here. How should I approach the topic of splitting? Should I call the clerk tomorrow and ask ahead of my interview early next week, or should I mention it at the start of the interview?

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:28 am

Re: splitting, you mention it after they offer you the internship. Your interview isn't the time to be setting limits. The only, sole, single goal of the interview is to get the offer. When you get the offer, that's the time to talk limitations.

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Re: 9th Circuit CoA Externship, or possible firm job?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:32 pm

I think you need to get a feel for the judge in the interview. You will probably be offered the job if they are going through the trouble of having you in for an interview, these are people that do not have a lot of time on their hands. If the judge is a laid back type, you are probably golden with trying to split. I think that conversation should be had with the main clerk, however, and not the judge himself/herself.

im not working on the coa this summer but i am working for a fed district ct judge in sdny and was offered on the spot. she was very low key and her clerk mentioned at the end that if i found a paid gig, i could split my summer. judge's chambers can be really laid back or uptight, it just depends solely on the judge and you will get a better feel for that in the interview.




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