Clerkship chances

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Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:59 pm

Transfer from T30 to CCN. Top 3% 1L, 3.8+ fall semester GPA 2L. Accepted to 1L school Law Review, and on a secondary journal at new school. Very good chances at publication and high editorial board (based on discussion with current board). I'm not totally sure about recommenders yet, but I'll have my note supervisor (prof from last semester) for sure.

I don't want to apply broadly. I want to be in New York, and am willing to risk not getting a clerkship to stay here. What are my chances at SDNY, EDNY, or 2d Cir?

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 8:24 pm

For such selective courts, not being on LR hurts. I suspect that without a recommender who has ties to a particular judge and is willing to make a call for you, it will be next to impossible for 2d Cir. More likely for d ct, but I'd still say < 50%. I can think of multiple people at my CCN on LR who were shut out in NYC. The recommender call is what will get your app pulled from the pile.

Significant work experience before law school? That may help, as certain judges (Jacobs, Raggi) seem to prefer applicants who didn't just come straight from undergrad.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:39 pm

FWIW, between 80-90% of 2d Cir. clerks from the 2008, 09 graduating classes at CLS were on LR. Only one person w/o LR didn't have a D.Ct. clerkship first.

Was your 3.8+ in all lecture classes? Seminars? Clinic? It may matter since you don't have 1L grades at CLS/NYU.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:59 pm

OP Here. My 3.8+ is one seminar and 3 lectures (think Corporations, Antitrust, Tax, Evidence, etc). Similar classes this semester. I participate meaningfully in all my classes, and my professors seem to know who I am. I think I can get good recommendations (don't know about phone calls). Honestly, D.Ct. clerkships probably make more sense for me, since I hope to do litigation. I'm just very personally settled in New York, and might put off doing a clerkship if it meant leaving the city. Is SDNY a stretch?

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:04 pm

Sorry to hijack, but I'm also very curious about my clerkship chances. I'm a 2L at HLS. Using our new weird GPA calculation system, I'm sitting at a 3.708. No LR, but secondary journal. Will have at least one strong rec from a well-known prof, and I'm actively hustling this semester to make sure I have a lock on a second strong one.

Interested primarily in the 1/2/3 circuits (I know DC is basically out of the question) and district courts in SDNY, EDNY, D.NJ, D.Mass, D.D.C., and D.CT. Realistic?

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Using our new weird GPA calculation system, I'm sitting at a 3.708.


What approx. class rank is this?

Anonymous User wrote:OP Here. My 3.8+ is one seminar and 3 lectures (think Corporations, Antitrust, Tax, Evidence, etc). Similar classes this semester. I participate meaningfully in all my classes, and my professors seem to know who I am. I think I can get good recommendations (don't know about phone calls). Honestly, D.Ct. clerkships probably make more sense for me, since I hope to do litigation. I'm just very personally settled in New York, and might put off doing a clerkship if it meant leaving the city. Is SDNY a stretch?


If you are at CLS, apparently if you go to the clerkship website and you can download a pdf that has some info. A friend sent me the pdf, so I don't have a link. If not, I'm sure NYU has something similar.

SDNY seems like a stretch, but EDNY, perhaps. A don't rule out Jersey if you really want to clerk.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:54 pm

Ignore this one
Last edited by Anonymous User on Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 10, 2011 11:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Using our new weird GPA calculation system, I'm sitting at a 3.708.


What approx. class rank is this?


Hard to say, but at least top 20%, I'm guessing.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:13 am

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Using our new weird GPA calculation system, I'm sitting at a 3.708.


What approx. class rank is this?


Hard to say, but at least top 20%, I'm guessing.

About what ratio of Hs to Ps? Any DS?

My quick gut reaction is that 1 and 2 are more or less out of the question, with 3 still being a huge stretch. But it won't hurt to apply. Reasonable shot at D. Ct.s, although there I think DDC and SDNY are also very unlikely.


9 H's and 4 P's, with one of the H's being a DS.

Not to sound defensive, but is it really that unlikely to land a COA gig or SDNY/DDC w/ my stats? Even with the lack of LR, I would find it slightly pessimistic that top 15-20% at HLS couldn't land one of those spots.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:19 am

I'm an HLS 3L who just went through the clerkship process. I think the assessment above was way too pessimistic. You probably have a decent shot at all of those circuits, although you should apply broadly because things are unpredictable. (I received a clerkship on one of the 3 circuits you named with a worse GPA than that).

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:05 am

Yeah, I should probably have clarified this by saying that the COA clerkships actually located in Boston and NYC will be extremely competitive. Those ones probably require close to straight H's and law review. I think you'd have a good chance at district court clerkships in those places though and COA clerkships in those circuits outside of the hyper competitive locations. (and, to reiterate what I said before, a huge amount of the process is random and comes down to judges' very personal preferences, so you should definitely apply for whatever number of judges OCS tells you to apply to--I think that to its credit, OCS actually gives pretty good advice on where you should apply and the number of judges you should consider).

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:23 am

i only got three interviews for SDNY with better 2L grades and secondary journal from HLS. not even a sniff from circuit.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby twistedwrister » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:35 am

Anonymous User wrote:i only got three interviews for SDNY with better 2L grades and secondary journal from HLS. not even a sniff from circuit.


Three SDNY interviews is nothing to sneeze at. Did you get an offer? If so, congrats. SDNY is a tough gig to land.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:29 am

Anonymous User wrote:i only got three interviews for SDNY with better 2L grades and secondary journal from HLS. not even a sniff from circuit.


Does this mean no sniff from the 2d Cir. or any circuit? The former doesn't seem unreasonable, the latter is scary.

And congrats on the SDNY interviews, that's an accomplishment in and of itself.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:57 pm

i only tried DC Circuit, 1st in Boston, and 2nd. definitely wasn't surprised that merrick garland took a pass, and I think by the advent of the law clerk hiring plan there were maybe 2-3 spots left on the 1st circuit.

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby vamedic03 » Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:i only tried DC Circuit, 1st in Boston, and 2nd. definitely wasn't surprised that merrick garland took a pass, and I think by the advent of the law clerk hiring plan there were maybe 2-3 spots left on the 1st circuit.


That's a pretty narrow selection of places to apply. Were you only focusing on liberal judges?

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Re: Clerkship chances

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:03 pm

Search was geographically narrow for family reasons. I don't recommend my strategy. The process was pretty harrowing, and I was lucky it worked out.

My basic point for OP is that federal appellate clerkships in these three cities (and San Fran/LA in 9th, though I wouldn't know personally) are probably out based on his/her grades. District clerkships in these cities will also be hard to snag without some special in. Also for God's sake be next to your phone when the calls begin. You want the earliest possible interview. In SDNY, two judges canceled after they hired from among their first two candidates.




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