0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

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oyezoyez2015
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0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby oyezoyez2015 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:25 am

Forgive me, but I seem to be a little confused as to the process of finding a 1L summer internship. It seems that the main time for submitting applications is Dec 1st into January. But from what I gather, most 1L 1st semester grades haven't been released, so on what basis do firms, gov't agencies etc base their hiring decisions? Writing samples from 1st semester classes? Previous work experience? Personal connections?

Would love to get any insight.

Thanks in advance.

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98234872348
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby 98234872348 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:31 am

oyezoyez2015 wrote:Forgive me, but I seem to be a little confused as to the process of finding a 1L summer internship. It seems that the main time for submitting applications is Dec 1st into January. But from what I gather, most 1L 1st semester grades haven't been released, so on what basis do firms, gov't agencies etc base their hiring decisions? Writing samples from 1st semester classes? Previous work experience? Personal connections?

Would love to get any insight.

Thanks in advance.

You submit your application, grades or not, update resume/send transcripts when they come in.

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Cupidity
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Cupidity » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:34 am

1L firm work is essentially impossible, unless you go to a T14 and have significant work experience or a solid connection.

PI work is often less centered on grades, so you can apply early and get an offer with a solid cover letter, some relevant community service, or a good interview.

Government work is a little harder, especially the prestigious stuff like DOJ, FBI, this is the only place where this conflict exists and honestly, I haven't figured it out.

Judges will hire from Dec 1st through early February, you can apply earlier and possibly get an interview based on resume/writing sample, though many judges wait until grades are published and interview in late January.

Schools generally advise profs to hold off on RA positions until around march, so that in some sense they can act as a safety net.

Your best bet is to apply as soon as you have your grades to as many places as possible. Hope this helps some.

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Richie Tenenbaum
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Richie Tenenbaum » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:37 am

Just to add a correction to what other people have said--you can apply without grades, or just whenever you get you first grade back (if they release them one by one, instead of all at once). I got an judicial internship interview that I recieved an offer on the spot for when I had just one grade at the time.

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oyezoyez2015
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby oyezoyez2015 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:39 am

Cupidity wrote:1L firm work is essentially impossible, unless you go to a T14 and have significant work experience or a solid connection.

PI work is often less centered on grades, so you can apply early and get an offer with a solid cover letter, some relevant community service, or a good interview.

Government work is a little harder, especially the prestigious stuff like DOJ, FBI, this is the only place where this conflict exists and honestly, I haven't figured it out.

Judges will hire from Dec 1st through early February, you can apply earlier and possibly get an interview based on resume/writing sample, though many judges wait until grades are published and interview in late January.

Schools generally advise profs to hold off on RA positions until around march, so that in some sense they can act as a safety net.

Your best bet is to apply as soon as you have your grades to as many places as possible. Hope this helps some.


Thanks! That definitely helps. Yeah, my area of interest lies closer to the DOJ, FBI, DA, USAO side, and it seems hard to figure out how one can position themselves best as a 1L for those types of gigs. Any of your friends obtain a gov't gig for their 1L summer? If so, any ideas on what led them so be successful?

Thanks again.

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oyezoyez2015
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby oyezoyez2015 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 11:40 am

Richie Tenenbaum wrote:Just to add a correction to what other people have said--you can apply without grades, or just whenever you get you first grade back (if they release them one by one, instead of all at once). I got an judicial internship interview that I recieved an offer on the spot for when I had just one grade at the time.


Congrats! Hope you enjoy it!

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HarlandBassett
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby HarlandBassett » Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:47 pm

Cupidity wrote:1L firm work is essentially impossible, unless you go to a T14 and have significant work experience or a solid connection.


What would count as "significant" experience? Say I have 4-5 years in tax advisory at a Big4, would that give me an edge to apply to BigLaw tax 1L SA?

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vanwinkle
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:54 pm

If you want info about the general process, see this:

viewtopic.php?f=22&t=107596#p2552351

If you want info about what requirements you need for a specific job... it depends on the job and your school. A lot of 1L interns are accepted just on the basis of your school (if you're at a top law school) before grades even come out, because 1) it's assumed you're competent if you're at a school like that and 2) as a 1L you're not going to have very advanced legal knowledge anyway.

Stuff that pays will require grades, but 1L firm jobs are very rare and only tend to go to the top students at top schools (or URMs who have gotten into minority outreach programs) at this point.

What different employers look for depends largely on the employer. Criminal defenders or prosecutors will look for criminal law interest or experience on your resume. Public interest orgs will look for signs that you're dedicated to public interest. Government positions will depend on a number of factors, including what ties you have to the industry/field, what ties you have to the state/region you're applying to, and so on and so forth.

Applying before grades come out and then following up with grades when you have them is a great thing to do. You've gotten in touch with them early and you're able to remind them of your interest while you're giving them your grades.

One last thing to keep in mind is that it doesn't matter too much where you work after 1L. As long as you get some kind of real legal experience that summer, that's sufficient. If you're focused on a specific field or market then that can be a plus, but it's not at all necessary.

dakatz
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby dakatz » Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:57 pm

It seems to me (at least from what I have experienced so far) that the 1L summer job search is far less merit-based than the OCI process will be later this year. I heard of many people getting jobs without even knowing their grades yet, whereas I know many people with great grades who are having trouble getting the jobs they want.

r6_philly
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby r6_philly » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:34 pm

I will add in a couple question of my own:

If 1L SA is essentially impossible, are the other positions that people usually get paid or unpaid?

Is it necessary to do anything at all? If no firm job can be had, I would be much inclined to take a 2-3 months contract position that can make me $30-40k, but it wouldn't be legal related work. I really rather get paid firm work of course, but it seems impossible?

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vanwinkle
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:44 pm

r6_philly wrote:I will add in a couple question of my own:

If 1L SA is essentially impossible, are the other positions that people usually get paid or unpaid?

Is it necessary to do anything at all? If no firm job can be had, I would be much inclined to take a 2-3 months contract position that can make me $30-40k, but it wouldn't be legal related work. I really rather get paid firm work of course, but it seems impossible?

1) Most 1Ls will either get a job as a Research Assistant (RA) for a professor at their school, which typically does pay minimally, or take an unpaid internship. Internships for PI orgs are often eligible for grant funds from a sponsoring PI fund or a school's own PI fund.

2) Anything legal-related is good, but yes, it's necessary to get some legal experience over the summer, if you want hope of finding a paying job down the line.

Kretzy
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Kretzy » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:47 pm

r6_philly wrote:I will add in a couple question of my own:

If 1L SA is essentially impossible, are the other positions that people usually get paid or unpaid?

Is it necessary to do anything at all? If no firm job can be had, I would be much inclined to take a 2-3 months contract position that can make me $30-40k, but it wouldn't be legal related work. I really rather get paid firm work of course, but it seems impossible?


Some are paid, but a VAST majority are unpaid. Many of the T14 have grants that cover summer expenses (SLS gives you $5,000 for the summer, as long as you work for 10 weeks for a broadly-defined "public interest" organization, for example).

I don't know anyone here who did nothing legal related their first summer. It seems like that would make firms or other legal organizations wary (I guess if you come to LS thinking, "hey, I just want to do consulting/go into politics/etc." then maybe, but I still wouldn't want to risk not having a legal job.

I will say that firm jobs are difficult to get, though not impossible at a top school. Here, about 30% worked in firms last summer as a 1L, and of my group of friends I'd say at least the same percentage either (1) has a big firm job already, or (2) has had at least one callback that may turn into a job soon.

Lots of folks don't want to work for a firm 1L summer, and many of them already have gigs.

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The Stig
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby The Stig » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:57 pm

thanks for the insight!

r6_philly
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby r6_philly » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:01 pm

Thanks for the replies. I guess I will make sure I do something legal related. I guess I will hope my WE and background can help me with finding a firm job. PI/Gov work is not bad, I was just hoping to make some money.

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Grizz
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Grizz » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:36 pm

About 1L SAs:

Without being a URM, the best way to get one is to know someone in a small market, like where you're from. So far, out of my friends (at my UCLA/Tex/Vandy), I know two people who've got them in Arkansas, one in Louisiana, one in Nebraska, one in Michigan, and one in FL. Alabama and Tex hire 1Ls too.

So yeah, not great odds, but you may be lucky enough to be blessed with connections as well as geographically.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Stanford4Me » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:43 pm

If you're coming to TX from a T14 (and I realize that's a big if) many firms will give offers w/o grades. I received two offers before I even received my grades. My friend, who is not a URM, received an offer w/o grades. Definitely varies market to market. Larger markets will require grades.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:50 pm

Stanford4Me wrote:If you're coming to TX from a T14 (and I realize that's a big if) many firms will give offers w/o grades. I received two offers before I even received my grades. My friend, who is not a URM, received an offer w/o grades. Definitely varies market to market. Larger markets will require grades.


+1, same here. and like standford4me's friend, im not URM.

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Lawl Shcool » Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:57 am

Small firms will pay as well but are tougher to find. I found a 3 person shop through a family connection, I got paid and got some great hands on experience.

Eco
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Eco » Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:17 pm

So what's the advice on finding smaller law firm internships?

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vanwinkle
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:32 pm

Eco wrote:So what's the advice on finding smaller law firm internships?

Know people who work in such firms? They're so small that I think job positions there very often go to people with personal connections. Ties to the market/region (as in, something indicating you might at least consider working there after graduation, or at least aren't just going there to collect a paycheck all summer) probably also matter. Otherwise, mass mailing like hell, because you're going to have to put yourself out there a lot in order to get any responses at all.

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: 0L confused about 1L summer jobs process

Postby Lawl Shcool » Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:53 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
Eco wrote:So what's the advice on finding smaller law firm internships?

Know people who work in such firms? They're so small that I think job positions there very often go to people with personal connections. Ties to the market/region (as in, something indicating you might at least consider working there after graduation, or at least aren't just going there to collect a paycheck all summer) probably also matter. Otherwise, mass mailing like hell, because you're going to have to put yourself out there a lot in order to get any responses at all.


As usual this is credited. Smaller firms often don't plan on having an intern but would be willing to do so if the right candidate came across their desk.




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