What is helpful work experience?

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professork
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What is helpful work experience?

Postby professork » Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:40 pm

Everyone speaks of experience being crucial for those that are not top of the class - perhaps the distinguishing characteristic that separates those with jobs and those without, at least during OCI/OGI/EIP. I know for my school, the top third is considered safe, above median decently safe, and below median shaky. The middle and more crucially the latter category is where work experience after undergrad seems to matter the most.

My question: When TLS speaks of helpful work experience, what do they mean. Is it limited to those who used to be in finance (as ibankers, consultants, accountants, etc.) and those who were paralegals at firms? Is it limited to something that would be relevant to the position you are seeking or can it be unrelated? For example, would a year as a manager of a store or restaurant waitress be helpful at all if only to distinguish those with life experiences and responsibility from those who came straight from UG?

Once again, thanks.

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thesealocust
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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby thesealocust » Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:42 pm

1-3 years of full time employment in a field that requires or strongly prefers a college education between graduation from college and beginning law school.

More than that could get iffy (though my guess is most firms wouldn't balk at an older applicant, and I know several who did very well), and deviation from that (i.e. did you graduate from college and work at a lunch truck for 5 years?) could get iffy. Really it's referring to straight up work experience, not any particular professional or substantive setting.

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Shaggier1
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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Shaggier1 » Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:13 am

My impression is that tech backgrounds (those relevant to IP) stand out, as does experience in finance and accounting. Additionally, if you got to know an industry that is heavily regulated (airlines, for example), this could be attractive to certain firms. I would also think that particular subsets of government work (EEOC for future employment litigators) would be useful.

Beyond that, I think everything starts to look the same.

Anonymous User
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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:01 am

For someone who went straight through how much would having a 1L SA help mitigate the disadvantage, or at least separate oneself from those that don't have WE?

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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:45 am

Anonymous User wrote:For someone who went straight through how much would having a 1L SA help mitigate the disadvantage, or at least separate oneself from those that don't have WE?


The people without WE who suffer due to it are those who are marginal for biglaw anyway (e.g., bottom third at CCN, median at DCNG, top 25% at a T30). If you have a 1L SA, you probably aren't marginal for biglaw to begin with.

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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:14 pm

Relevant to my interests. I have top 10% grades, but my post college work experience is thoroughly unimpressive. I don't expect it to be a big plus in my favor, but will it actively hurt me?

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traehekat
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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby traehekat » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:41 pm

This thread is related to my interests, please continue.

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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:06 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:For someone who went straight through how much would having a 1L SA help mitigate the disadvantage, or at least separate oneself from those that don't have WE?


The people without WE who suffer due to it are those who are marginal for biglaw anyway (e.g., bottom third at CCN, median at DCNG, top 25% at a T30). If you have a 1L SA, you probably aren't marginal for biglaw to begin with.


But say that you are marginal for big law, yet had a 1L SA anyways. Nevermind how that happened. Thoughts?

Anonymous User
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Re: What is helpful work experience?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:17 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:For someone who went straight through how much would having a 1L SA help mitigate the disadvantage, or at least separate oneself from those that don't have WE?


The people without WE who suffer due to it are those who are marginal for biglaw anyway (e.g., bottom third at CCN, median at DCNG, top 25% at a T30). If you have a 1L SA, you probably aren't marginal for biglaw to begin with.


But say that you are marginal for big law, yet had a 1L SA anyways. Nevermind how that happened. Thoughts?


Also, how does return-offer status affect the utility of the 1L SA in interview: 1) offer to return for 2L summer? 2) Offer to return for 2L summer as split with another firm? 3) Offer to return as an associate after law school? 4) Offer status unclear? 5) Definite no offer?

thanks




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