CALI Award?

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273387
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

CALI Award?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 29, 2011 7:38 pm

Is it appropriate to list a CALI award on your resume? Do firms know what it means, or is it obscure? How much of a benefit is it?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273387
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 29, 2011 7:48 pm

Absolutely appropriate. I think enough schools have it that employers are probably familiar with it. But on my resume I put (highest grade in the class) next to it just in case.

lawgod
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 3:22 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby lawgod » Fri Jul 29, 2011 7:50 pm

Hmmmm. We didn't have those. Is that what it is? highest grade in the class?

User avatar
Heartford
Posts: 430
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 9:02 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Heartford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:11 pm

lawgod wrote:Hmmmm. We didn't have those. Is that what it is? highest grade in the class?


It's actually more like "best student in the class," because most classes have more than one A student (or A+, if that's how your school rolls) but every class has only one CALI winner.

And OP, I agree that it's acceptable. OCS 'round here suggests putting it in the "honors" section of our resumes. You could just put "CALI Award, Torts" or whatever, and then explain it if asked during an interview. I think most firms will be familiar with the awards because lots of schools have them.

User avatar
Glock
Posts: 395
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:48 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Glock » Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:21 pm

Heartford wrote:
lawgod wrote:Hmmmm. We didn't have those. Is that what it is? highest grade in the class?


It's actually more like "best student in the class," because most classes have more than one A student (or A+, if that's how your school rolls) but every class has only one CALI winner.

And OP, I agree that it's acceptable. OCS 'round here suggests putting it in the "honors" section of our resumes. You could just put "CALI Award, Torts" or whatever, and then explain it if asked during an interview. I think most firms will be familiar with the awards because lots of schools have them.



Put it on your resume as an honor, as suggested above. The award itself is not prestigious at all, but employers know it means you were the top student in a class. Winning things like that can help you create a narrative of yourself as a motivated person who can come out on top.

CALI awards are decided by the professor using any criteria they choose. All of the professors at my school will give it to the highest raw pre-curve grade in the class. There may be multiple A+ grades, but the person that actually did better will get the CALI award. I have heard of professors at other schools giving it to the A student who is the biggest kissass, but I think this is the exception.

traydeuce
Posts: 680
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2009 4:07 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby traydeuce » Sat Jul 30, 2011 5:16 pm

I actually just say, "Best Exam, Con Law." I suppose at some school where a CALI award doesn't necessarily mean that one wrote the best exam, one shouldn't say that, but every time I win one, it just says that I wrote the best exam or paper.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273387
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:15 pm

Not only is it appropriate, but you would be a fool not to put it on there. I go to Boalt, and we have the American Jurisprudence award, which is the same. I made sure it was the first line in my resume, as did a friend of mine who (heroically) collected three of them this year.

Also, FWIW, when I look at attorney bios, I often see people list them with their other education credentials (such as order of the coif, cum laude, etc).

lawgod
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 3:22 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby lawgod » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:25 pm

Well, can you write "Best exam, Whatever" if you did have the best one but your school doesn't have these awards?

goodolgil
Posts: 923
Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 6:01 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby goodolgil » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:27 pm

What if you just had the best exam in your opinion?

User avatar
fanmingrui
Posts: 194
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 3:59 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby fanmingrui » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:29 pm

traydeuce wrote:I actually just say, "Best Exam, Con Law." I suppose at some school where a CALI award doesn't necessarily mean that one wrote the best exam, one shouldn't say that, but every time I win one, it just says that I wrote the best exam or paper.

Subtle brag?

helfer snooterbagon
Posts: 203
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2007 10:04 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby helfer snooterbagon » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:42 pm

goodolgil wrote:What if you just had the best exam in your opinion?

:D definitely point this out. I added a couple of pages to my resume listing the best parts of my class participation, mostly direct quotes but some testimonials from professors, judges and world leaders.

traydeuce
Posts: 680
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2009 4:07 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby traydeuce » Sat Jul 30, 2011 11:23 pm

fanmingrui wrote:
traydeuce wrote:I actually just say, "Best Exam, Con Law." I suppose at some school where a CALI award doesn't necessarily mean that one wrote the best exam, one shouldn't say that, but every time I win one, it just says that I wrote the best exam or paper.

Subtle brag?


See the transfers forum for similarly subtle bragging on my part. Actually, I've only won two this year, though I guess in enormous classes the odds of winning three or four are kind of slim. Some of my professors, also, don't give them out.

User avatar
Glock
Posts: 395
Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:48 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Glock » Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:40 am

traydeuce wrote:I actually just say, "Best Exam, Con Law." I suppose at some school where a CALI award doesn't necessarily mean that one wrote the best exam, one shouldn't say that, but every time I win one, it just says that I wrote the best exam or paper.



I think "CALI Excellence Award" or something along those lines sounds better. Most employers know what it is, and many of them actually advertise it on their attorney bios. Saying "best exam" limits the perception to just exam taking while a CALI award in something makes it seem like you've mastered it. I just think it sounds worse.

traydeuce
Posts: 680
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2009 4:07 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby traydeuce » Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:48 am

Well, I guess I'm content to limit their perception to what it really is... a best exam in one case, a best paper in another. Besides which, I'm mostly using this resume, at the moment, for clerkship purposes, and to the extent that judges ultimately see my resume, I think that many of them will have no idea what a CALI award is, but do understand what a best exam is or what a best paper is. (The clerks should know, but even then, many of them will tend to come from Yale or other schools where these awards may well not be given out.) I can't honestly say, in any event, that I've mastered Criminal Procedure, and I don't really think that anyone's necessarily going to be fooled into thinking that I'm a Crim Pro 'master' because I got a CALI award. But certainly for purposes of firm employment, I guess it's wisest to hew to whatever terms the recruiters are most familiar with.

User avatar
Heartford
Posts: 430
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 9:02 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Heartford » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:22 am

traydeuce wrote:Well, I guess I'm content to limit their perception to what it really is... a best exam in one case, a best paper in another. Besides which, I'm mostly using this resume, at the moment, for clerkship purposes, and to the extent that judges ultimately see my resume, I think that many of them will have no idea what a CALI award is, but do understand what a best exam is or what a best paper is. (The clerks should know, but even then, many of them will tend to come from Yale or other schools where these awards may well not be given out.) I can't honestly say, in any event, that I've mastered Criminal Procedure, and I don't really think that anyone's necessarily going to be fooled into thinking that I'm a Crim Pro 'master' because I got a CALI award. But certainly for purposes of firm employment, I guess it's wisest to hew to whatever terms the recruiters are most familiar with.


You're probably right- judges, who have likely screened applications from thousands of law students from dozens of law schools over the years, and who interact with hundreds of attorneys with infinite backgrounds and who also have free and unrestricted access to google, probably don't have the faintest idea what a CALI award is. Probably best to just fabricate a name for the award yourself.

User avatar
KMaine
Posts: 862
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:57 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby KMaine » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:46 am

traydeuce wrote:
fanmingrui wrote:
traydeuce wrote:I actually just say, "Best Exam, Con Law." I suppose at some school where a CALI award doesn't necessarily mean that one wrote the best exam, one shouldn't say that, but every time I win one, it just says that I wrote the best exam or paper.

Subtle brag?


See the transfers forum for similarly subtle bragging on my part. Actually, I've only won two this year, though I guess in enormous classes the odds of winning three or four are kind of slim. Some of my professors, also, don't give them out.


Bragging gets less subtle as thread progresses.

traydeuce
Posts: 680
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2009 4:07 pm

Re: CALI Award?

Postby traydeuce » Sun Jul 31, 2011 12:03 pm

You know, I guess the truth is that I just have this weird snobbish thing against CALI awards, because at my old school they didn't give them, while they DID do these "cali" lessons (I believe in the cali lesson context, cali stands for computer-assisted legal instruction), so when I'd read about transfer applicants who got them, I thought it was this weird thing that t3 kids did where they'd sit on a computer and take some test proving their "mastery" of contracts. And then here I started winning them and I was like, oh... that's what they were talking about. But my completely irrational snobbish disdain for what they're actually called persists. Anyway, there is nothing confusing, you will admit, about "best exam" or "best paper."

Anonymous User
Posts: 273387
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:29 pm

weirdest thing happened to me. 1L year i got 0 cali awards... 2L year i got 2 cali awards but my GPA went from top 10% to top 20%. I somehow got a C- in a class it was baffling....

Anonymous User
Posts: 273387
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: CALI Award?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jul 31, 2011 5:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:weirdest thing happened to me. 1L year i got 0 cali awards... 2L year i got 2 cali awards but my GPA went from top 10% to top 20%. I somehow got a C- in a class it was baffling....


Same here- top 10%, no CALI awards. I got 6 A+'s during 1L but not a single CALI.

I also happen to have acquired a list of the rest of my class in the top 10% (it accidentally leaked at my school) and noticed that very few top 10 percenters had racked up many, if any, CALI awards... weird.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.