V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:02 am

Can you comment on the differences w/ respect to exit options for corporate associates in the v15 range v. the Non-WLRK v5?

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:29 am

itbdvorm wrote:
AntipodeanPhil wrote:Generally, what are your thoughts when you see a PhD on a CV?

And, more specifically, what about someone with a humanities PhD, a little time working in academia, and a Yale JD? I'm guessing that person would have to work to convince you he/she wasn't interested in returning to academia.

Yeah, that's probably right. I'd want to know why they made the switch. Frankly, that's one case where someone mentioning something about how they were frankly looking for something more lucrative wouldn't be a bad thing...

Thank you - good to know.

That is at least half of the reason, in my case.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:39 am

Thank you for doing this!

1) I have an S.O who will be applying to PhD programs my 3L year, so, after I'll have already committed to an office. S.O. will end up in most likely either Boston or NYC. How possible is it to ask to transfer from one office to another if a firm has an office in both places in 3L Spring? I plan to go into OCI targeting the market I want, but I'm wondering what to do if the market I end up in, and the places S.O. gets into don't end up aligning.

2) How does in-house counsel for 1L summer at a major corporation look?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:42 am

Anonymous User wrote:Can you comment on the differences w/ respect to exit options for corporate associates in the v15 range v. the Non-WLRK v5?


not huge material differences there, based upon what i've seen.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:42 am

AntipodeanPhil wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
AntipodeanPhil wrote:Generally, what are your thoughts when you see a PhD on a CV?

And, more specifically, what about someone with a humanities PhD, a little time working in academia, and a Yale JD? I'm guessing that person would have to work to convince you he/she wasn't interested in returning to academia.

Yeah, that's probably right. I'd want to know why they made the switch. Frankly, that's one case where someone mentioning something about how they were frankly looking for something more lucrative wouldn't be a bad thing...

Thank you - good to know.

That is at least half of the reason, in my case.


and the other half?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:44 am

Anonymous User wrote:Thank you for doing this!

1) I have an S.O who will be applying to PhD programs my 3L year, so, after I'll have already committed to an office. S.O. will end up in most likely either Boston or NYC. How possible is it to ask to transfer from one office to another if a firm has an office in both places in 3L Spring? I plan to go into OCI targeting the market I want, but I'm wondering what to do if the market I end up in, and the places S.O. gets into don't end up aligning.

2) How does in-house counsel for 1L summer at a major corporation look?


1) totally reasonable. but i'd make sure you're looking at a firm that is hiring for both (obviously) - much more doable if they're looking to expand in both places than if they're oversubscribed in one. also possible to move a year or two in...

2) pretty good, IMHO

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby dingbat » Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:54 am

itbdvorm wrote:
dingbat wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
dingbat wrote:In many law schools, it is possible to graduate in 2 1/2 years by taking summer classes both summers.
However, the student would not be able to take an SA position or an internship.

Is there any value to this strategy?

Is the lack of SA/internship a problem? (what if candidate already has relevant work experience)
Is the fact that student graduates in December a problem?


100% depends. For example, what do you want to do? Right now, since so many firms fill the bulk of their spots via 2L summer positions, it will severely disadvantage you in getting a big firm job. If you want to clerk, probably not a big issue (though you wouldn't start until later so you'd need to find something to do Dec-Sept). I'd say then the biggest "value" would be "time" and "money" but both could be counterbalanced (possibly) by decreased work opportunities.


I want a specific practice area of biglaw and have already got a lot of related work experience (structuring/product development for a niche firm)
As I'm coming to law late, I want to start as soon as possible.
(also - giving up a six figure job for it, so I'm very hung-ho)

Thanks, by the way


While you probably would be a great fit, it doesn't matter if you can't get hired. Why are you leaving your current gig? That sounds silly. You're going to blow 3 years of your career and lots of $ to try to get a job on the legal side in an industry you're already in?


I've got good reasons, but I can't actually go into them on a public message board.
Suffice to say, I have good reasons and I can explain them.

Part of it has to do with the fact that it's a very niche industry and on the financial/administrative side there just isn't much room for growth. Most of the work is legal (reviewing IRC, state & federal regulations, obtaining private letter rulings, formulating legal opinions, etc.).
Not only that, after having worked closely with various outside counsel, being told what the interpretations are, or why option X is better than option Y (when both options have issues), I realize I'd rather be the one doing the research, finding the precedents and trying to interpret what the ramifications are.
Less important, I prefer the stability of a law firm salary over the unpredictability of compensation that's predominantly based on firm performance (in 2010 I made less than 1/3rd what I made in 2008)

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby 3L Student » Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:17 am

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Can you elaborate on your bad experiences with transfers? Are you talking in terms of work product being a lower quality or something else? I'm a transfer going to a firm this summer (lower-ranked Vault firm) and I don't want to be a "bad experience".


Some bad work product, unprepared for "big-firm" life, etc.


Bad work product is self-explanatory, but I'm not quite sure what you mean by the latter. Is there a certain way to prepare for "big firm" life as a SA that you find that transfers don't do? And by "etc." what are some of the other things you find transfers do wrong as a SA that "native" students don't?


I think some of the really lower-tier law schools (don't want to name names, but I'm not talking about a Brooklyn to Columbia transfer - lower down than that) don't really prepare people for "big firm" life because that's not the route they anticipate sending people to. I'm talking about truly unprepared, no concept of appropriate dress code, etc.


Transfers from lower ranked schools are not prepared for Big Law life because they have "no concept of appropriate dress code"? Wow.

I guess that a student's 1L experience is a good indicator of how appropriate his or her dress style will be and two years at T10 can in no way change that. But I digress--I might have misinterpreted what you said

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:27 am

3L Student wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Bad work product is self-explanatory, but I'm not quite sure what you mean by the latter. Is there a certain way to prepare for "big firm" life as a SA that you find that transfers don't do? And by "etc." what are some of the other things you find transfers do wrong as a SA that "native" students don't?


I think some of the really lower-tier law schools (don't want to name names, but I'm not talking about a Brooklyn to Columbia transfer - lower down than that) don't really prepare people for "big firm" life because that's not the route they anticipate sending people to. I'm talking about truly unprepared, no concept of appropriate dress code, etc.


Transfers from lower ranked schools are not prepared for Big Law life because they have "no concept of appropriate dress code"? Wow.

I guess that a student's 1L experience is a good indicator of how appropriate his or her dress style will be and two years at T10 can in no way change that. But I digress--I might have misinterpreted what you said


You are a little bit. We've had specific, bad experiences with people - who while they may eventually learn how to be awesome, professional lawyers, simply were not that the day they stepped into our doors and turned enough people off by such poor behavior, dress code, work product, etc., that it tainted their entire prior school. We only recruit at a very few schools to begin with - if we wouldn't recruit at your school normally, having transferred to a "better" school doesn't replace the fact that all we have to go on is your 1L grades from an institution we don't look overly highly upon.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:16 am

itbdvorm wrote:
AntipodeanPhil wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
AntipodeanPhil wrote:Generally, what are your thoughts when you see a PhD on a CV?

And, more specifically, what about someone with a humanities PhD, a little time working in academia, and a Yale JD? I'm guessing that person would have to work to convince you he/she wasn't interested in returning to academia.

Yeah, that's probably right. I'd want to know why they made the switch. Frankly, that's one case where someone mentioning something about how they were frankly looking for something more lucrative wouldn't be a bad thing...

Thank you - good to know.

That is at least half of the reason, in my case.

and the other half?

Well, my research specialty left me teaching the same two courses again and again to students with no interest in my subject. I could engage some of them, but it was a lot of work for not much in terms of personal or financial reward.

Of course, I’m sure I’ll have to be very careful about how I spin that in interviews, since I imagine it’s best to avoid sounding overly negative. My plan is just to say that would have been teaching the same two courses for many years, and I decided I would like more variety and better remuneration, along a positive story to tell about how my interests led me to law.

Am I right to assume that even entry-level corporate big law involves a fair amount of variety?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby pferaso » Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:33 pm

Thanks for taking questions!!! I´m a foreign attorney and was accepted to Nortwestern´s 2 year JD for foreign lawyers.
How would you evaluate a candidate from this program? please bear in mind that people enrolled in it will interview without transcripts since they are not released by the time OCI begins.

Again thank you very much for your help, right now I have to decide between attending this program or the regular 3-year JD from Cornell. Northwestern´s 2 year would be much cheaper and would save me a year, but I want to have a clear view about its employability.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:19 pm

pferaso wrote:Thanks for taking questions!!! I´m a foreign attorney and was accepted to Nortwestern´s 2 year JD for foreign lawyers.
How would you evaluate a candidate from this program? please bear in mind that people enrolled in it will interview without transcripts since they are not released by the time OCI begins.

Again thank you very much for your help, right now I have to decide between attending this program or the regular 3-year JD from Cornell. Northwestern´s 2 year would be much cheaper and would save me a year, but I want to have a clear view about its employability.


At least for us, I don't think we'd hire a 2L summer clerk without grades...

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby boosk » Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:32 pm

What are examples of some of the more impressive 1L Summer WE's people have brought to OCI to talk about?

Thanks for taking time out of what must be a busy schedule to answer our questions, btw.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby dooood » Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:39 pm

You mentioned (some time ago) that it used to be more common for 3Ls to "transfer up" firms, but that may not be the case anymore. Is that because people are generally scared of jeopardizing a sure thing so don't even try to move up?

Also, I imagine that firms one targets in an effort to "transfer up" would care a lot about whether or not the 3L had an offer from his 2L summer firm. What if one's 2L firm drags its feet and doesn't officially extend offers until October or so? Would the student be at a disadvantage without the offer in hand?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:18 pm

boosk wrote:What are examples of some of the more impressive 1L Summer WE's people have brought to OCI to talk about?

Thanks for taking time out of what must be a busy schedule to answer our questions, btw.


Hmm. Not totally sure on that one. People have had some substantive experience with government agencies (DOJ, Senate Committees, etc.), large corporations / i-banks, 1L experiences at peer firms, research positions with prominent figures...but I think a lot of different things are more than acceptable.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:20 pm

dooood wrote:You mentioned (some time ago) that it used to be more common for 3Ls to "transfer up" firms, but that may not be the case anymore. Is that because people are generally scared of jeopardizing a sure thing so don't even try to move up?

Also, I imagine that firms one targets in an effort to "transfer up" would care a lot about whether or not the 3L had an offer from his 2L summer firm. What if one's 2L firm drags its feet and doesn't officially extend offers until October or so? Would the student be at a disadvantage without the offer in hand?


Less the case now because fewer firms are looking to expand their 3L entering classes more than anything else. I think firms understand that some 2L firms are slow in making decisions sometimes - you can just tell them that. Better that than no offer for sure.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 05, 2012 9:13 pm

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thank you for doing this!

1) I have an S.O who will be applying to PhD programs my 3L year, so, after I'll have already committed to an office. S.O. will end up in most likely either Boston or NYC. How possible is it to ask to transfer from one office to another if a firm has an office in both places in 3L Spring? I plan to go into OCI targeting the market I want, but I'm wondering what to do if the market I end up in, and the places S.O. gets into don't end up aligning.



1) totally reasonable. but i'd make sure you're looking at a firm that is hiring for both (obviously) - much more doable if they're looking to expand in both places than if they're oversubscribed in one. also possible to move a year or two in...


Thank you! As a follow up, would it be easier to start at Boston and transfer into NYC, or vice versa, or is it really dependent on the firm?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon Mar 05, 2012 10:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thank you for doing this!

1) I have an S.O who will be applying to PhD programs my 3L year, so, after I'll have already committed to an office. S.O. will end up in most likely either Boston or NYC. How possible is it to ask to transfer from one office to another if a firm has an office in both places in 3L Spring? I plan to go into OCI targeting the market I want, but I'm wondering what to do if the market I end up in, and the places S.O. gets into don't end up aligning.



1) totally reasonable. but i'd make sure you're looking at a firm that is hiring for both (obviously) - much more doable if they're looking to expand in both places than if they're oversubscribed in one. also possible to move a year or two in...


Thank you! As a follow up, would it be easier to start at Boston and transfer into NYC, or vice versa, or is it really dependent on the firm?


Really depends on firm, unfortunately. Hard to tell w/out getting into specifics which firms are in growth mode in which cities.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 05, 2012 11:04 pm

Not sure if this has been asked before, but do 2L Fall externships have any relevance to your hiring decision? Would it be wise to include it in your resume even if you had not started it yet? Does it just depend on what the position is (in my case it is a fed CoA judge)? Thanks.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 05, 2012 11:24 pm

Is a 1L internship with a state supreme court justice viewed favorably during OCI or is it more of a neutral thing?

Also, I'm more interested in corporate work, but would it make more sense to try and sell myself as a litigator during OCI and say I took the judicial internship because of my interest in litigation?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Mar 06, 2012 1:17 am

1. How do you perceive female appearance?
a. Must female interviewees wear skirt suits or are pant suits fine?
b. I do not generally wear makeup, and I understand I will have to for interviews - do you have a concept of how much? (I generally just use coverup and a tiny amount of other makeup - no eye makeup, and i wear glasses).

2. This thread addressed subjective views based on appearance. Do you think there's a different standard for women then for men? (specifically, is it more damaging to be an overweight female than an overweight male; will long hair that gets unrulier throughout the day be thought of as a killer, when men keep it short and don't have that issue).

3. Is there an advantage/disadvantage to a "friendly" demeanor, smiling and animated conversation, rather than a "professional" demeanor, more reserved and v. to the point. I'm not talking about extremes, just about your preference / trend in who you think gets hired within the spectrum of acceptable/professional.

4. What can a candidate with little impressive work experience and without impressive summer experience (reg. judicial internship or reg. public interest job) do to improve his/her impact in an interview? Focus on transferable skills? Reiterate interest in firm? Seem really nice? Seem really on-the-ball?

Sorry for the long questions. Thank you for answering them!

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Mce252 » Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:19 am

How do you look upon moot court/mock trial experience as compared to someone who dedicated themselves solely to law review?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby roranoa » Tue Mar 06, 2012 10:12 am

I'm not sure if I asked this on your post or another persons' post whose also helping out but I'll just give it a go.

I have a 1 year gap in my resume. I really didn't do anything for the first 6 months and I was looking for a job for the next 6 months and got one. (This is before I matriculated for law school)

How bad would this be for me? What kind of answer would be a decent response that would make you just shrug it off and move on.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Mar 06, 2012 12:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Not sure if this has been asked before, but do 2L Fall externships have any relevance to your hiring decision? Would it be wise to include it in your resume even if you had not started it yet? Does it just depend on what the position is (in my case it is a fed CoA judge)? Thanks.


Probably won't make a huge difference either way. I would include it on your resume (obviously making it clear that you won't be starting it yet) if for no other reasons than (a) it sounds good and (b) it's a decent conversation point. By callback time you will presumably have begun it anyway

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Mar 06, 2012 12:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Is a 1L internship with a state supreme court justice viewed favorably during OCI or is it more of a neutral thing?

Also, I'm more interested in corporate work, but would it make more sense to try and sell myself as a litigator during OCI and say I took the judicial internship because of my interest in litigation?


Positive, though the degree of positivity may have more to do with the firm/market and how often they go before that court. But definitely not a bad thing.

I'd say no on the second point. If you're truly more interested in corporate saying that you're open to both is the right call. You can speak about the internship and how it affected your opinion.




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