Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

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Sogui
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Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Sogui » Sun May 08, 2011 9:06 pm

I'm a 1L at CLS and been considering how 1L grades will affect my EIP prospects, etc...

According to our school 70% of our class accepted offers at EIP (which, in turn, was populated almost entirely by large firms) last year, I'd take that to mean that firms find roughly 70% of our class to be biglaw material... my concerns about employment began to evaporate, as well as my motivation to work hard on exams.

However this banks on the assumptions that "biglaw" is largely homogenous. I hadn't really considered what "real" differences might exist between tip-top firms (V10, V25) and the firms that don't get mentioned as much (V50, V100).

I am going to be a committed relationship and I always value free time, so I rationalized the prospect of slipping grades by saying "Oh I wouldn't want to work at a Skadden-type firm anyway, it would destroy me and ruin what will be the first few years of my marriage and what is supposed to be my happy care-free youth".

Yet this is based almost entirely on assumptions piled on assumptions. What distinguishes these top vault firms from lower ones in the "big picture"? Is it just bonuses, or are there other factors that I'm missing here?

Edit: And I suppose I should ask, are there advantages to working lower down the ladder, like greater flexibility with my time/less aggressive schedules/more use of vacation time?

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby viking138 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:25 pm

From what I've read and learned from associates, firms lower down in the vault rankings (not that they're the end-all be-all) are not any less rigorous in terms of hours and expectations. In fact, because they have to compete more for clients and such, they can tend to squeeze more out of associates. I wouldn't rely on a firm being less intense just because it's lower in the rankings.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Veyron » Sun May 08, 2011 9:26 pm

Well, basically, I'd expect a V25 to have more horsepower than a V10 and a V50 to have more horsepower than a V25.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby lawyerwannabe » Sun May 08, 2011 9:36 pm

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Last edited by lawyerwannabe on Sun May 08, 2011 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby viking138 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:39 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:This is a legitimate question, but there are two important points that should be made at the outset: "lower" down the Vault ladder doesn't necessarily connote (1) less interesting work or (2) lower billable hours requirements. In other words, it isn't like working at Proskauer is going to magically offer you a better work/life balance than, say, DPW.

Instead of focusing on the Vault rankings, you should define what you want out of a law firm and then find how the firms stack up according to those criteria.


This is a really great point that I think people forget a lot. If you really enjoy sports, for example, you might love being at Proskauer because they work on a lot of labor disputes involving sports. So, yes you'd be further down in the (ultimately meaningless) rankings, but you might enjoy your work a lot more.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Blindmelon » Sun May 08, 2011 9:40 pm

This confused the shit out of me too going into OCI. Almost all V100/NLJ 250 firms are going to be grinding hours-wise. If you're looking for a slightly more relaxed atmosphere, don't go to NYC/DC as most bigfirms will be the same hours-wise. Seconary market firms tend to be less crazy with hour requirements/facetime.

Be careful with the Vault "rankings." They're not that helpful because firms have different specialties and so a lower ranked firm may be better for certain things. E.g, Paul Weiss is baller for lit. but if you want to do more transactional you might want to look elsewhere. The better the firm, typically, the more "cutting edge work" you get, but more importantly, the more high level clients you'll meet and make contacts to lateral in-house later. FWIW, USAO offices from my experience also tend to take from only the top of the bigfirm list and the best known local firms (Boston USAO had people from Davis Polk, WilmerHale, Goodwin, Choate Hall).

This brings up another point, the Vault rankings are very New York Centric, and so using them as a guidepost for DC or Boston doesn't always work. E.g., If you're looking at Boston, Choate, IMO, is up there with Bingham, Proskaeur and Skadden Boston, but isn't a V100 or NLJ 250 firm. Also, WilmerHale trounces Goodwin in the rankings, but thats mostly because Wilmer DC is amazing, but in Boston, WilmerHale and GP and much more equal (although I still think WH > GP). My advise for OCI - bid often and everywhere, collect offers (hopefully) then research the nitty gritty from there.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby RVP11 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:42 pm

If you want lower billable hour expectations or better work/life balance you need to complete divorce yourself from Vault rankings, and should be more concerned with major market vs. secondary/tertiary market.

The difference between the best NY firms and the crappy NY firms isn't going to be that big in terms of hours. But the difference in hours between the best NY firms and the best, say, Portland firms, is going to be VAST.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby RVP11 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:42 pm

viking138 wrote:
G. T. L. Rev. wrote:This is a legitimate question, but there are two important points that should be made at the outset: "lower" down the Vault ladder doesn't necessarily connote (1) less interesting work or (2) lower billable hours requirements. In other words, it isn't like working at Proskauer is going to magically offer you a better work/life balance than, say, DPW.

Instead of focusing on the Vault rankings, you should define what you want out of a law firm and then find how the firms stack up according to those criteria.


This is a really great point that I think people forget a lot. If you really enjoy sports, for example, you might love being at Proskauer because they work on a lot of labor disputes involving sports. So, yes you'd be further down in the (ultimately meaningless) rankings, but you might enjoy your work a lot more.


ITT: we paint rosy pictures of mediocre firms in rapid decline

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby viking138 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:43 pm

RVP11 wrote:If you want lower billable hour expectations or better work/life balance you need to complete divorce yourself from Vault rankings, and should be more concerned with major market vs. secondary/tertiary market.

The difference between the best NY firms and the crappy NY firms isn't going to be that big in terms of hours. But the difference in hours between the best NY firms and the best, say, Portland firms, is going to be VAST.


This is certainly true, but from what I heard from a friend going in to the Seattle market, firms there still are expecting 60 hour weeks, on average (sometimes more, sometimes less). This is better than New York, for sure, but just want to be sure OP knows that "better hours" doesn't mean 40 hours a week.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby viking138 » Sun May 08, 2011 9:45 pm

RVP11 wrote:
viking138 wrote:
G. T. L. Rev. wrote:This is a legitimate question, but there are two important points that should be made at the outset: "lower" down the Vault ladder doesn't necessarily connote (1) less interesting work or (2) lower billable hours requirements. In other words, it isn't like working at Proskauer is going to magically offer you a better work/life balance than, say, DPW.

Instead of focusing on the Vault rankings, you should define what you want out of a law firm and then find how the firms stack up according to those criteria.


This is a really great point that I think people forget a lot. If you really enjoy sports, for example, you might love being at Proskauer because they work on a lot of labor disputes involving sports. So, yes you'd be further down in the (ultimately meaningless) rankings, but you might enjoy your work a lot more.


ITT: we paint rosy pictures of mediocre firms in rapid decline


I mean, clearly you should also research the firms you're considering and look into their business side as much as their culture/environment side.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Sogui » Sun May 08, 2011 10:10 pm

Thanks for all the prompt and detailed responses, so I guess lower rank = less hours was a silly thought.

So I may not be working any less at a lower ranked firm, but (aside from bonuses) what would I be missing out on? Less opportunities for going in-house? I am still operating on the assumption that something besides juicier bonuses and prestige drive people to top firms.

It's hard to say what kind of legal work I would "enjoy" doing, but I think that interesting/novel concerns would always be preferable to grunt labor. I love *thinking* about certain legal debates but even most of those are more of an academic/theoretical set of issues. Realistically I except to work in a corporate transactions area, Finance was my major and I expect to play that up in EIP and have transaction work be my focus for selecting interviews.

Work-life balance will be a big deal for me. Unless biglaw is something that I naturally enjoy working in, and I become entranced with my work... I will not be able to escape my natural love for free time. I'll be married and young, those two things would make me very likely to pick a more relaxed firm with more emphasis on W/L balance. Though I'm not sure what I'd be willing to give up for that benefit, or if that benefit really exists anywhere in biglaw. And dealing with markets, given my fiance's line of work we have pretty much agreed that NYC or DC is the destination. I favor NYC because I prefer the city, my background (and what I've heard so far) lends itself to transactions, and I will have more firms to choose from and a stronger network here. She prefers DC as a city, it lends itself to her desired line of work, and doesn't like the prospect of living in Manhattan.



As for the EIP data, I was bored one night and added it up myself. Our class size is ~400 students and there were 297 *accepted* offers. The list was almost entirely large firms and the hearsay and chatter from 2L's on hiring has been generally positive, 1L's generally get exposed to the most successful 2L's so that could be bias... but even a 2L I met at orientation said he was right at median and had secured an offer that he was happy with. In all likelihood I have about a 50/50 chance of either ending up with a "Stone Scholar" golden-ticket (top ~30%) or a barren resume with a slightly above-median GPA.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby markymark » Sun May 08, 2011 10:30 pm

Just remember that vault isn't the best metric for non-NYC firms. For example, Mayer NYC is nothing special. However Mayer in Chicago operates in the same way that a Debevoise or Cleary in NYC operates. Not the tiptop, but the next best thing. Focus on city and practice area, slavishly following vault us dumb.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby BruceWayne » Sun May 08, 2011 10:57 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:To the extent you really want your job to regularly involve serious thinking about legal problems, a large law firm might not be the best fit. Junior associates -- particularly at large NYC firms -- generally don't do a lot of that. And, before people jump in and mention anecdotes to the contrary, let me be clear: I am not suggesting that junior associates never get involved in difficult or interesting work. Clearly, they do. Rather, my point is that the mainstay of junior associate work at the largest firms in NYC and DC consists largely of due diligence; doc review; witness/deposition prep; preparing relatively mundane memos/proofreading the same; summarizing large documents or data sets; and so on. OP should seriouly that as s/he chooses what to do going forward. Ignoring that reality merely delays the inevitable clash between what s/he really wants to do and what life as a law firm associate is like.

The same goes w/r/t OP's professed "natural love for free time." To the extent OP wants high-end transactional work in NYC, my gut instinct is that the two interests just are not compatible. One will have to give.


Generally when someone highlights this reality (and, outside of this website, pretty well known reality) they get lit up for it. I'm curious to see if they'll try it with one of the popular high posters.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun May 08, 2011 11:00 pm

Sogui wrote:Thanks for all the prompt and detailed responses, so I guess lower rank = less hours was a silly thought.

So I may not be working any less at a lower ranked firm, but (aside from bonuses) what would I be missing out on? Less opportunities for going in-house? I am still operating on the assumption that something besides juicier bonuses and prestige drive people to top firms.


Ok, I am going to generalize. Several people are going to complain I am generalizing and point out exceptions. I acknowledge I am generalizing, that there are several exceptions, and that you should pick firms according to your own ranking criteria, but there are two big general trends:

-Generally, if you go to a higher ranked firm, you have better exit options. Higher paying/better company if you're interested in going in house, more consideration for top government jobs, easier to go to a "lesser" firm and make partner. For the last one, think of it this way: It is much more common for an associate to find out that he is not making partner at S&C (PPP > 3,000,000) because S&C does not think he can bring in enough business to justify making him a partner, and lateral to Dewey and LeBoeuf (PPP =~ 1.5 million) on the partner track. The opposite happens much more rarely. Obviously Vault isn't a perfect rank order of PPP, but there's a definite trend there. Similarly, if you look at the USAOs in SDNY and EDNY, they are disproportionately populated with former V20 associates.

-Generally, assuming you don't have a specific practice area interest, higher ranked firms will work on more interesting and high profile matters. A company involved in a multi-billion dollar competitive bid generally hires Cravath, S&C, Watchtell, etc. They do not hire (or will rarely hire) DLA Piper, Proskauer, Kramer Levin, etc. Note this doesn't mean your individual work will necessarily be more interesting, but the cases/deals you work on generally will.

This works much better within markets (i.e., hard to compare DC vs. NY firms using vault). It also tends to hold true much more for NY firms, and for corporate departments, since that's mostly what vault reflects. But it's not a bad way to get a general sense before doing your own research.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun May 08, 2011 11:08 pm

BruceWayne wrote:
G. T. L. Rev. wrote:To the extent you really want your job to regularly involve serious thinking about legal problems, a large law firm might not be the best fit. Junior associates -- particularly at large NYC firms -- generally don't do a lot of that. And, before people jump in and mention anecdotes to the contrary, let me be clear: I am not suggesting that junior associates never get involved in difficult or interesting work. Clearly, they do. Rather, my point is that the mainstay of junior associate work at the largest firms in NYC and DC consists largely of due diligence; doc review; witness/deposition prep; preparing relatively mundane memos/proofreading the same; summarizing large documents or data sets; and so on. OP should seriouly that as s/he chooses what to do going forward. Ignoring that reality merely delays the inevitable clash between what s/he really wants to do and what life as a law firm associate is like.

The same goes w/r/t OP's professed "natural love for free time." To the extent OP wants high-end transactional work in NYC, my gut instinct is that the two interests just are not compatible. One will have to give.


Generally when someone highlights this reality (and, outside of this website, pretty well known reality) they get lit up for it. I'm curious to see if they'll try it with one of the popular high posters.


I won't take issue with it because I think it's largely true, but it's also a bit myopic.

The next step is to ask what jobs will allow you to do serious thinking about legal problems. Some people might say the USAO, or a boutique where you get more responsibility, or whatever. The thing is, many of these jobs hire heavily out of big firms because they provide good (if sometimes boring) training and experience, and doing a stint in a big firm helps you land those jobs.

Obviously not always true, and there are other routes, but many people go to big firms as a stepping stone to something else. Just because you think a job will not be super-stimulating for 3-4 years isn't necessarily a reason not to do it if it allows you to get a job that is super-stimulating and that you wouldn't get otherwise (not saying this is always the case, but it can be for individual situations/goals).

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun May 08, 2011 11:18 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:+1 to chuckbass's post, and in particular this line: "Note this doesn't mean your individual work will necessarily be more interesting, but the cases/deals you work on generally will." Reviewing docs or drafting interrogatories for a case that is on the front page of the WSJ is, in most respects, no more or less interesting than doing the same tasks for a case that nobody other than the parties has ever heard of.


Agreed.

I really think many people need to ask themselves whether they get excited by work because (1) the issues involved are inherently interesting, (2) they get to interact closely with clients and really feel like their work is personally appreciated, or (3) because it is very big and impactful in terms of real world effect.

To take an extreme example, would you rather handle an extremely intricate issue of first impression in the context of an otherwise run-of-the-mill drug case that few people care about except for your client (who cares a lot)? Or would you rather handle a case that involves pretty standard issues, but if you win it could change the face of an industry/have a big effect on the way your client, with tens of thousands of employees, does business?

Different things make different people tick (no value judgments intended about which of the three is most worthy). If you're interested in (3), probably better to go to a big firm. If not, the value proposition of big firms offer gets more iffy.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Sogui » Sun May 08, 2011 11:42 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:To the extent you really want your job to regularly involve serious thinking about legal problems, a large law firm might not be the best fit. Junior associates -- particularly at large NYC firms -- generally don't do a lot of that. And, before people jump in and mention anecdotes to the contrary, let me be clear: I am not suggesting that junior associates never get involved in difficult or interesting work. Clearly, they do. Rather, my point is that the mainstay of junior associate work at the largest firms in NYC and DC consists largely of due diligence; doc review; witness/deposition prep; preparing relatively mundane memos/proofreading the same; summarizing large documents or data sets; and so on. OP should seriouly that as s/he chooses what to do going forward. Ignoring that reality merely delays the inevitable clash between what s/he really wants to do and what life as a law firm associate is like.

The same goes w/r/t OP's professed "natural love for free time." To the extent OP wants high-end transactional work in NYC, my gut instinct is that the two interests just are not compatible. One will have to give.


I've accepted the realities you put down here. I didn't target biglaw for the flexible hours or the cutting edge issues, but if I'm going to do it, it couldn't hurt to find work with a firm that's marginally less punishing to these categories.

As to what someone said about exit-options, that's what I suppose matters the most when I think about it. I don't see myself as trying for partner at any biglaw firm, but I do see in-house as a realistic possibility and I would certainly consider it a disadvantage if my 1L grades led to a lower ranked firm which in turn leads to less options for in-house.

As for the *type* of legal issue I generally enjoy, I'd enjoy both but I would probably have far more fun dealing with a "case of first instance" than a big-impact case. Still, knowing my work could have that impact would still be a strong motivator.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun May 08, 2011 11:54 pm

Sogui wrote:As to what someone said about exit-options, that's what I suppose matters the most when I think about it. I don't see myself as trying for partner at any biglaw firm, but I do see in-house as a realistic possibility and I would certainly consider it a disadvantage if my 1L grades led to a lower ranked firm which in turn leads to less options for in-house.


Yeah, that was my thinking also when I was going through the process. The vault rankings are a decent proxy, but as everyone's been saying, there are lots of exceptions. You have all summer to do research on different firms - this is not only so you can perform better at EIP, but also so you don't miss lower ranked firms that offer what you're looking for.

I ended up going to a V20. But if I didn't, there's a good chance I would have gone to Patterson Belknap, which I still think is one of the best firms in new york if you're interested in what they do (soft IP, hard IP, and advertising/media litigation, mostly). They're ranked in the 90s or something on vault, but have a great rep in new york - send lots of associates to the USAO, good boutiques, and top in-house positions with companies that have a heavy IP or media focus. They also have great work/life.

But, keep in mind the following: Just because a firm is ranked lower on vault, doesn't mean it's less selective. PBWT is arguably more selective than Skadden or Weil, both of which are V10. Irell (#37) is definitely more selective than most V10s (save perhaps wachtell, W&C and maybe Covington). The way it generally works out is the firms with the best exit options get the best applicants, and are thus the most selective - regardless of where they fall in vault.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Sogui » Mon May 09, 2011 12:08 am

imchuckbass58 wrote:
Sogui wrote:As to what someone said about exit-options, that's what I suppose matters the most when I think about it. I don't see myself as trying for partner at any biglaw firm, but I do see in-house as a realistic possibility and I would certainly consider it a disadvantage if my 1L grades led to a lower ranked firm which in turn leads to less options for in-house.


Yeah, that was my thinking also when I was going through the process. The vault rankings are a decent proxy, but as everyone's been saying, there are lots of exceptions. You have all summer to do research on different firms - this is not only so you can perform better at EIP, but also so you don't miss lower ranked firms that offer what you're looking for.

I ended up going to a V20. But if I didn't, there's a good chance I would have gone to Patterson Belknap, which I still think is one of the best firms in new york if you're interested in what they do (soft IP, hard IP, and advertising/media litigation, mostly). They're ranked in the 90s or something on vault, but have a great rep in new york - send lots of associates to the USAO, good boutiques, and top in-house positions with companies that have a heavy IP or media focus. They also have great work/life.

But, keep in mind the following: Just because a firm is ranked lower on vault, doesn't mean it's less selective. PBWT is arguably more selective than Skadden or Weil, both of which are V10. Irell (#37) is definitely more selective than most V10s (save perhaps wachtell, W&C and maybe Covington). The way it generally works out is the firms with the best exit options get the best applicants, and are thus the most selective - regardless of where they fall in vault.


Thank you & everyone else who gave such thoughtful responses. I definitely had not been think about the nuances since biglaw for me (and I'm sure many others) was just presented as a homogenous entity and the most subtle distinction made was between transaction and litigation work. Upon reflection, exit options are definitely a big concern that I will have an eye towards when bidding rolls around. I know about the Vault guides, but are there any other sources for background research on a firm?

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon May 09, 2011 12:16 am

Sogui wrote:Thank you & everyone else who gave such thoughtful responses. I definitely had not been think about the nuances since biglaw for me (and I'm sure many others) was just presented as a homogenous entity and the most subtle distinction made was between transaction and litigation work. Upon reflection, exit options are definitely a big concern that I will have an eye towards when bidding rolls around. I know about the Vault guides, but are there any other sources for background research on a firm?


Chambers (which CLS career services should give to you in book form, but if not you can access it for free online) can give you a good idea of strong practice areas for different firms. Chambers Associate has the same info, but geared more towards students. It also provides some narrative on culture, assignment systems, etc. I found Chambers Associate in particular more helpful than vault.

Links:
http://www.chambersandpartners.com/USA
http://www.chambers-associate.com/

But more importantly, talk to practicing (biglaw or former biglaw) lawyers if you know any. Even if you don't know exactly what you want, you may know the broad contours of what practice areas you're interested in, what your goals may be and what you value, and they can help. Next best is rising 3Ls who don't have any direct experience, but at least theoretically did the same sort of research you did a year ago.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby timbs4339 » Mon May 09, 2011 3:42 am

Sogui wrote:Thanks for all the prompt and detailed responses, so I guess lower rank = less hours was a silly thought.

So I may not be working any less at a lower ranked firm, but (aside from bonuses) what would I be missing out on? Less opportunities for going in-house? I am still operating on the assumption that something besides juicier bonuses and prestige drive people to top firms.

It's hard to say what kind of legal work I would "enjoy" doing, but I think that interesting/novel concerns would always be preferable to grunt labor. I love *thinking* about certain legal debates but even most of those are more of an academic/theoretical set of issues. Realistically I except to work in a corporate transactions area, Finance was my major and I expect to play that up in EIP and have transaction work be my focus for selecting interviews.

Work-life balance will be a big deal for me. Unless biglaw is something that I naturally enjoy working in, and I become entranced with my work... I will not be able to escape my natural love for free time. I'll be married and young, those two things would make me very likely to pick a more relaxed firm with more emphasis on W/L balance. Though I'm not sure what I'd be willing to give up for that benefit, or if that benefit really exists anywhere in biglaw. And dealing with markets, given my fiance's line of work we have pretty much agreed that NYC or DC is the destination. I favor NYC because I prefer the city, my background (and what I've heard so far) lends itself to transactions, and I will have more firms to choose from and a stronger network here. She prefers DC as a city, it lends itself to her desired line of work, and doesn't like the prospect of living in Manhattan.



As for the EIP data, I was bored one night and added it up myself. Our class size is ~400 students and there were 297 *accepted* offers. The list was almost entirely large firms and the hearsay and chatter from 2L's on hiring has been generally positive, 1L's generally get exposed to the most successful 2L's so that could be bias... but even a 2L I met at orientation said he was right at median and had secured an offer that he was happy with. In all likelihood I have about a 50/50 chance of either ending up with a "Stone Scholar" golden-ticket (top ~30%) or a barren resume with a slightly above-median GPA.


I struck out at EIP with median grades and no work experience. That number 297/400 is very misleading. It includes transfers, who generally do very well at EIP relative to the student body generally, and does not give you the Scholar/non-scholar breakdown, how people with work experience fared over people without work experience, how IP folks did, etc.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby UnitarySpace » Mon May 09, 2011 4:22 am

you should recount sogui. also your denominator is slightly off - career services quoted a participation rate of 85 percent. i'll let you fill in the blanks.

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Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Sogui » Mon May 09, 2011 8:16 am

UnitarySpace wrote:you should recount sogui. also your denominator is slightly off - career services quoted a participation rate of 85 percent. i'll let you fill in the blanks.


I don't have the numbers with me, 297 got offers. If only 85% of the class participated then we're talking about maybe the bottom 20% of OCI participants not getting job offers.

My primary concern was about the long-term influences of my apathy this semester. Like what a drop from Stone scholar territory to near-median would mean for career prospects. Part of me was convinced that it just wouldn't matter.

2LLLL
Posts: 249
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 12:38 pm

Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby 2LLLL » Mon May 09, 2011 10:38 am

If only 85% of the class participated then we're talking about maybe the bottom 20% of OCI participants not getting job offers.



Not necessarily. It has been well covered on this board that X% of a class getting offers does not equal the top X% getting offers. Once you get lower in the class, things like personality and WE become more important, such that a bottom whatever percent student could get an offer where a median student (like the poster 3 above) could strike out.

Renzo
Posts: 4265
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:23 am

Re: Differences between a V10 and say, a V25-50 firm?

Postby Renzo » Mon May 09, 2011 10:51 am

2LLLL wrote:
If only 85% of the class participated then we're talking about maybe the bottom 20% of OCI participants not getting job offers.



Not necessarily. It has been well covered on this board that X% of a class getting offers does not equal the top X% getting offers. Once you get lower in the class, things like personality and WE become more important, such that a bottom whatever percent student could get an offer where a median student (like the poster 3 above) could strike out.


Right. There are firms that have strict, no-exceptions grade cutoffs. Then there are firms that consider the whole package; such that being slightly above median may not put you in a better spot than someone who has bottom-of-the-curve grades, but has charisma and real work experience. Grades are one of many independent factors for most firms, but pretty much the only one you have control over between now and OCI (you're not going to get funnier or more worldly in 4 months, after all).




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