Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

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Anonymous User
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Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:22 pm

I know these get repetitive, but I could really use some advice on how to gameplan my employment search. I'm a rising 3L at a MVP without a SA. I transferred from another school, and for whatever reason couldn't lock down a SA gig in the major market I was going for. It wasn't that surprising though, considering the fact that my grades from my 1L year didnt make me an extremely competitive candidate. They were good, but not great. I was able however to land a very competitive government internship.

After a surprisingly good performance at my new school, I will likely be anywhere from top 8-12% of the class. So what's my next move? I've started the process of getting all my clerkship materials in order. Besides that, is there anything else I could do. Is it worth it to mass mail every firm? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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prezidentv8
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby prezidentv8 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I know these get repetitive, but I could really use some advice on how to gameplan my employment search. I'm a rising 3L at a MVP D without a SA. I transferred from another school, and for whatever reason couldn't lock down a SA gig in the major market I was going for. It wasn't that surprising though, considering the fact that my grades from my 1L year didnt make me an extremely competitive candidate. They were good, but not great. I was able however to land a very competitive government internship.

After a surprisingly good performance at my new school, I will likely be anywhere from top 8-12% of the class. So what's my next move? I've started the process of getting all my clerkship materials in order. Besides that, is there anything else I could do.? Is it worth it to mass mail every firm? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.


QFTaggingPurposes and modified for vaguely similar situation.

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Cavalier
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Cavalier » Thu Jun 02, 2011 11:43 pm

Clerkship hiring is occurring now. With your grades, you might be able to land at a less competitive circuit, and you shouldn't have trouble finding a federal district clerkship somewhere (if you are not geographically constrained). Once you land a district court clerkship, you will then be a better position to get to a circuit if you keep your grades up (and especially if you can find a way onto your school's law review). Basically this will (a) keep you employed for a year or two after law school, and more importantly (b) make big law a strong possibility. But you can't simply wait until "the plan" to go for clerkships. Get your application materials ready ASAP, figure out who's hiring when (talk to everyone you know), and start applying.

You're unlikely to get big law directly after 3L. Yes, you should mass mail every employer if you don't have anything lined up, but with the potential for a federal clerkship, that should be your preferred route.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby gwuorbust » Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:13 am

I think you could mass mail your way to employment, but almost assuredly not biglaw employment.

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Fri Jun 03, 2011 8:35 am

Cavalier wrote:Clerkship hiring is occurring now. With your grades, you might be able to land at a less competitive circuit, and you shouldn't have trouble finding a federal district clerkship somewhere (if you are not geographically constrained). Once you land a district court clerkship, you will then be a better position to get to a circuit if you keep your grades up (and especially if you can find a way onto your school's law review). Basically this will (a) keep you employed for a year or two after law school, and more importantly (b) make big law a strong possibility. But you can't simply wait until "the plan" to go for clerkships. Get your application materials ready ASAP, figure out who's hiring when (talk to everyone you know), and start applying.

You're unlikely to get big law directly after 3L. Yes, you should mass mail every employer if you don't have anything lined up, but with the potential for a federal clerkship, that should be your preferred route.


I hate to be the bringer of bad news, but 8-12% as a transfer student - even at HS, much less MVP - is not going to make you competitive for circuit court clerkships. Probably not for district courts, either. There were plenty of top 10% LR editorial board folks at Chicago who struck out on the clerkship search last year; and, make no mistake, being a transfer student is a serious liability in the clerkship hunt (even if you managed to get LR - which you don't indicate you did).

Edit to add: Keep in mind that about half of all district courts are off the table because you are not an alumni candidate. To the extent your school has an application limit (many do): (i) I wouldn't waste applications on circuit clerkships; (ii) you need to find out which district judges have a preference for alumni applicants; (iii) you need to send applications to the off-the-beaten track judges (they are still very competitive, though, and will question your lack of ties to the area).

That said, at this point, the marginal cost of sending applications out to *everything* - government gigs, clerkships, mass-mailing every firm in existence - is probably the way to go (though I would wait until you are somewhat closer to firms' traditional hiring seasons). More than one person here got a biglaw gig (and I'm talking New York V5, not just "a firm") as a rising 3L via mass-mailing; though they are certainly the exception, not the rule. Good luck.

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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:54 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
Cavalier wrote:
I hate to be the bringer of bad news, but 8-12% as a transfer student - even at HS, much less MVP - is not going to make you competitive for circuit court clerkships. Probably not for district courts, either. There were plenty of top 10% LR editorial board folks at Chicago who struck out on the clerkship search last year; and, make no mistake, being a transfer student is a serious liability in the clerkship hunt (even if you managed to get LR - which you don't indicate you did)..


As someone who went through the clerkship hiring process in the fall, I don't think this is a fair assessment. This student is almost certainly "competitive" for at least district court clerkships, and probably many circuit clerkships as well. Obviously, this doesn't guarantee landing one, because the process is not as predictable as things like law firm hiring or law school admissions. Judges tend to be looking for more personal characteristics. The fact that top students at Chicago struck out is probably due to the randomness of the process (and, I hate to say it, but perhaps due to poor interviewing skills), not because their academic credentials were inadequate for many judges to seriously consider their application.

If this person applies broadly, I'd be surprised if he/she came out with no interviews at all. MVP still places 3L's in clerkships, even in this economy, and this person's grades are quite good (including this person's grades at his/her new school).

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Cavalier
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Cavalier » Fri Jun 03, 2011 8:13 pm

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
Cavalier wrote:Clerkship hiring is occurring now. With your grades, you might be able to land at a less competitive circuit, and you shouldn't have trouble finding a federal district clerkship somewhere (if you are not geographically constrained). Once you land a district court clerkship, you will then be a better position to get to a circuit if you keep your grades up (and especially if you can find a way onto your school's law review). Basically this will (a) keep you employed for a year or two after law school, and more importantly (b) make big law a strong possibility. But you can't simply wait until "the plan" to go for clerkships. Get your application materials ready ASAP, figure out who's hiring when (talk to everyone you know), and start applying.

You're unlikely to get big law directly after 3L. Yes, you should mass mail every employer if you don't have anything lined up, but with the potential for a federal clerkship, that should be your preferred route.


I hate to be the bringer of bad news, but 8-12% as a transfer student - even at HS, much less MVP - is not going to make you competitive for circuit court clerkships. Probably not for district courts, either. There were plenty of top 10% LR editorial board folks at Chicago who struck out on the clerkship search last year; and, make no mistake, being a transfer student is a serious liability in the clerkship hunt (even if you managed to get LR - which you don't indicate you did).

Edit to add: Keep in mind that about half of all district courts are off the table because you are not an alumni candidate. To the extent your school has an application limit (many do): (i) I wouldn't waste applications on circuit clerkships; (ii) you need to find out which district judges have a preference for alumni applicants; (iii) you need to send applications to the off-the-beaten track judges (they are still very competitive, though, and will question your lack of ties to the area).

That said, at this point, the marginal cost of sending applications out to *everything* - government gigs, clerkships, mass-mailing every firm in existence - is probably the way to go (though I would wait until you are somewhat closer to firms' traditional hiring seasons). More than one person here got a biglaw gig (and I'm talking New York V5, not just "a firm") as a rising 3L via mass-mailing; though they are certainly the exception, not the rule. Good luck.

Obviously that's not "competitive" for the court of appeals, but a clerkship there is still a significant possibility, and one of the only feasible avenues to land at a good firm eventually. With regard to district courts, I'd say the odds of getting a district court clerkship are much stronger than of getting big law through mass mailing.

Dman
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Dman » Fri Jun 03, 2011 9:30 pm

I am also someone who is also going to give this whole 3L thing a try. Maybe a naive question, but what are post 3L positions called? Are they still summer associate gigs? Or would I be basically applying for a permanent position post BAR exam? If lightning strikes, do 3L hires generally start with the returning prior 2L class?

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Cavalier
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby Cavalier » Fri Jun 03, 2011 9:35 pm

Dman wrote:I am also someone who is also going to give this whole 3L thing a try. Maybe a naive question, but what are post 3L positions called? Are they still summer associate gigs? Or would I be basically applying for a permanent position post BAR exam? If lightning strikes, do 3L hires generally start with the returning prior 2L class?

You'd be applying to be a first year associate--to start at the same time as the firm's summer associates from before.

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sanpiero
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby sanpiero » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:17 pm

i like where this is headed

2LLLL
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Re: Another 3L Employment Gameplan Thread

Postby 2LLLL » Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:40 am

Query-- How much will the current budget situation reduce federal 3L Honors hiring?




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