1L Summer Internship Tips?

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Anonymous User
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1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:23 am

I'm looking for any tips you guys have regarding securing a decent 1L summer internship.
I'd love to have a paid one, but I know that is a pipe-dream, so I'd certainly be happy with something unpaid from which I can get some good legal experience.
I'm preferably looking for something that isn't in the criminal law sector, as I spent the last year and a half working as an intern to a local district attorney and while I enjoyed that type of work, I am not sure I can handle the overall thanklessness of ADA/defense jobs right out of law school. I do have this internship available to me again next summer if I want it back, however, so I'm probably more lucky than most 1Ls in that regard.
I have some interest in corporate legal work, perhaps civil litigation, and perhaps real estate. I'm really not too picky, though. I'd love to have something in a midlaw firm, as it would give me a taste of firm life versus life working for the government. Additionally, I know of the utter rarity of biglaw 1L internships, so I'm not planning on getting one.

I'm wondering what the time frame is for applying to 1L summer jobs, and what others have done/have had success with in the past.

When is it the right time to mass mail firms as a 1L? Is it even acceptable to mass mail firms as a 1L?
Is it acceptable to mass mail non-NALP firms earlier than December 1st?
How early is too early?
There are some alumni from my undergraduate school and some from my law school at all of the non-NALP firms I'm considering mass mailing, and some of the NALP firms. Is now the right time to contact them?
What do I do regarding the fact that I don't have grades to give to the firms yet?

Any tips are appreciated!
Perhaps I'm a bit ahead of the game here, but I'd rather be early and get a good internship versus waiting too long and missing out on a good internship.

duckmoney
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby duckmoney » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:37 am

Search the forum brah.

kahechsof
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby kahechsof » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:00 am

I think in house counsel jobs are pretty accessible, and mine paid like 25 an hour/ 40 hrs a week.
Not what you'll make at biglaw, but more than you'll make for your professor or interning for scalia.

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Bronte
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Bronte » Tue Oct 04, 2011 12:06 pm

Apply widely and apply early.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Oct 04, 2011 12:18 pm

kahechsof wrote:I think in house counsel jobs are pretty accessible, and mine paid like 25 an hour/ 40 hrs a week.
Not what you'll make at biglaw, but more than you'll make for your professor or interning for scalia.

With Biglaw, you'll make the $160,000 on a prorated basis, so $3,333.33 a week.

If you want Biglaw here are a few tips:

1) It's very competitive, only 8% of 1Ls at my T6 school got a 1L summer gig
2) It helps if you're a minority/"diverse"
3) It helps if you have ties to some non-NYC market that has "satellite" offices (i.e. Texas, ATL, LA, etc.)
4) Compile a list of firms you're interested in and find contact information for the recruiting directors via http://www.nalpdirectory.com
4a) This same website publishes NALP forms which generally let you know: a) If they hire 1Ls, b) compensation, c) the number of 1Ls hired the previous number, d) when you should apply
4b) No matter what the NALP forms say, IT IS BEST TO APPLY ON DECEMBER 1.
5) Ignore the people who say you're wasting your time: If you apply and don't get anything, you just don't get anything. If you don't apply you miss out on the opportunity for a great experience and lots of money. Also, it doesn't take a competent person long to construct a decent Cover letter/Resume.
6) Don't get your hopes up, again see 1.

In-House jobs are easier to come by, but as I didn't apply for any of those positions I don't know what to say about them.

I'm sure I've left out stuff, others can fill in or you can ask questions if you like. Also, there are a ridiculous amount of threads on 1L gigs, browse around the Employment forum and see if anything catches your eye.

azntwice
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby azntwice » Tue Oct 04, 2011 12:22 pm

small firms may be willing to offer you paid positions although they certainly won't pay as much. best bet is to ask career services for a list of small firms that alums are at and mass mail.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 04, 2011 12:36 pm

OP here:

Thank you everyone for the tips.

I have done some searches and I can't find anything specifically related to 1L internship tips, just a whole lot about, "Well I did ____ internship."
That's fine and dandy, but some posters don't even say how they landed their internship, and that is what I am really interested in.

I'm really looking for the mechanics of it all, when people mass mail as 1Ls, when people have had success in getting in touch with firms, etc.

I'd consider in-house work or biglaw work where payment for an internship would be more likely, but I don't go to a T20 and therefore I realize that my chances are pretty slim of getting in to any type of biglaw internship, and still pretty unlikely to nab an in-house gig.

I think I'm going to email a couple of the attorneys who are alums from my undergrad and work at midlaw firms and see what they have to say regarding possible internship opportunities. If it made me a more viable candidate for a paid 2L summer gig at the same or a different (perhaps bigger) firm, I'd do the 1L summer for free, as I have another job I could work on the weekends to supplement my (lack of) income.

Thanks again for the tips, keep them coming.
I'm sure I'm not the only 1L out there who is thinking about this...

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 04, 2011 3:20 pm

Stop worrying about this right now and worry about your grades. Once you take your exams, you can use winter break to worry about jobs. Do NOT let people tell you that 12/1 is a significant date. Unless you are looking at externships, ignore this date entirely.

Grades are everything.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Oct 04, 2011 3:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Stop worrying about this right now and worry about your grades. Once you take your exams, you can use winter break to worry about jobs. Do NOT let people tell you that 12/1 is a significant date. Unless you are looking at externships, ignore this date entirely.

Grades are everything.

It's not impossible to multi-task, unless your incompetent...in which case I'd wonder why you're in law school.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 05, 2011 8:37 am

OP here:
Anonymous User wrote:Stop worrying about this right now and worry about your grades. Once you take your exams, you can use winter break to worry about jobs. Do NOT let people tell you that 12/1 is a significant date. Unless you are looking at externships, ignore this date entirely.

Grades are everything.


Yes, grades are very important, but I think there is something to be said for trying just a bit to help get myself ahead of the game.

Stanford4Me wrote:It's not impossible to multi-task, unless your incompetent...in which case I'd wonder why you're in law school.


Yep, exactly, I'm simply multitasking, using the little free time I do have to do things like draft a solid resume, draft a solid cover letter, and do some networking... I don't go to a T14, so it can't hurt...

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 05, 2011 8:45 am

You're not getting a biglaw 1L gig unless you are a T6 minority or have previous connections. Same likely goes for paid jobs generally, other than working for a professor.

Pre-Dec, look into any gov't jobs that might be interesting to you--people who did SEC 1L cleaned up at OCI, and there are other bigfirm relevant agencies. You'll still aplly 12/1 or later but some have early deadlines (12/7, etc). Go through the Arizona guide.

Then, over christmas break, look into public interest jobs that offer hands-on experience, preferably at somewhere non-controversial. pslawnet, your school's database, idealist.org.

Expect to potentially have a job in Dec but more likely in Feb. If you are unemployed in Feb, start looking for a professor to RA for.

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:44 am

I noticed that people who did District Court Judicial Internships did very, very well at OCI as well.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:07 pm

OP back again after taking more time to study ;) :

So far, I've emailed some alums of my UG and my law school at some midlaw/a few biglaw firms. So far just radio silence on that end, but I'm going to a networking event for my UG next Wednesday, so maybe that will lead to something.

I'm also now thinking that I'd consider judicial externships, but I think I'd also like to work in the Attorney General's office.
Anybody have any tips on getting one of those?
I don't know if I should just mail-bomb the judges after December 1st, or where/how I can apply to the AG's office to pursue that type of work.

Also, someone mentioned in-house work. I guess my only question regarding in-house work is, how does one find in-house positions other than straight-up networking? Its not like there are usually job listings for 1L summer work in-house.

Again, any tips are hugely appreciated!

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Stanford4Me
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:23 pm

Just so you know, legal employers can't e-mail you about summer jobs until November 1. Alums may not be responding because of this rule. Only speculation, though. Also, networking with alums is good for long terms stuff, you're likely not going to get anything by making a 1 month relationship with an alum.

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:43 pm

Stanford4Me wrote:Just so you know, legal employers can't e-mail you about summer jobs until November 1. Alums may not be responding because of this rule. Only speculation, though. Also, networking with alums is good for long terms stuff, you're likely not going to get anything by making a 1 month relationship with an alum.


OP again:

I was under the impression that the non-NALP firms could email me at any time?
Most of the emails have just been in the form of asking advice and if they know if their firms have any 1L positions available this year, so it could very well be true that they're waiting, but I figured to some extent they might be willing to at least give me a tip or two on doing something for my summer.
One guy at a bigger Boston firm told me that his firm was "very bureaucratic" and that I'd be better off "grabbing a smaller gig for my 1L summer" and if I don't find anything "be a bartender, its great money and you make tons of connections!"
Grand, I came to law school to be a bartender. :lol:
And yeah, I know it most likely won't lead to anything, but hey, it can't hurt. Maybe if someone has a need for someone to carry their papers around for the summer, they'll hook me up. :p

Perhaps it wasn't worth sending them out, but it didn't take too long, so like I said, can't hurt.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Stanford4Me » Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
OP again:

I was under the impression that the non-NALP firms could email me at any time?
Most of the emails have just been in the form of asking advice and if they know if their firms have any 1L positions available this year, so it could very well be true that they're waiting.
And yeah, I know it most likely won't lead to anything, but hey, it can't hurt. Maybe if someone has a need for someone to carry their papers around for the summer, they'll hook me up. :p

Perhaps it wasn't worth sending them out, but it didn't take too long, so like I said, can't hurt.


I'm not attacking your strategy, just giving reasons why you may not have gotten a response. I can't speak for non-NALP firms, but it seems like the NALP rules are pretty strict. I remember not even being able to talk to CSO until Oct. 1. If our CSO rules are that strict, I can imagine that attorneys at NALP firms don't want to talk at all about employment opportunities for 1Ls, especially through their firm's email.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:17 pm

Thanks for the replies and information, I appreciate it.
My school has pretty strict CSO rules as well (I'm not allowed to enter the CSO office until November 1 as a 1L).

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Grizz
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Grizz » Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:25 pm

Some markets are big on 1L firm hiring (TX, AL come to mind). A lot of Southern markets. Ties are very impt. though.

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DallasCowboy
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby DallasCowboy » Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:35 pm

Look on Symplicity. One firm posted only on my school's site and hired one from our school.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 19, 2011 12:34 am

Definitely firms in the south (Texas, Tennessee, Alabama) seem to hire in the south. If you're Christian/Catholic, the Blackstone program through Alliance Defense Fund is pretty good and pays.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:51 am

I applied to regional/state firms that were in my hometown, and I don't live in a big city or anything. Got a paid 1L gig doing that.

I will say that it's nice being paid and all over the summer, but there can be a bit more pressure to "secure an offer" for the second summer. The topic definitely came up during the 2L search with in a lot of screeners and some of the CBs. Problem was, the firm I worked for doesn't really do that, so I had to awkwardly try to explain. Also, if you do a gig like this in your hometown, you may find yourself having to convince people during 2L that you want to work in their city and not your hometown and it could make it harder.

People who did Gov/PI or interned with a Judge over the summer did fine in the 2L search, so it's not like having a 1L SA gig is vital. If I could do it again, I'd have split it with a judicial internship or something. Having a judge as a reference is usually a good thing, especially if you can get one in a target market.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 19, 2011 2:19 am

Check with your career services office to see if they have any alumni networking events planned early spring. My school had one in February where alumni from different fields had tables set up at school (it was organized by practice area and had food, drinks, etc.). I met an attorney who was looking for a law clerk, and I've been clerking with that firm ever since. It's a small firm, but getting paid $20/hr is definitely better than working for free. Of course this is no guarantee you'll find a job this way, but definitely don't overlook these opportunities.

071816
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby 071816 » Wed Oct 19, 2011 2:47 am

Excellent thread.

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omninode
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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby omninode » Wed Oct 19, 2011 3:07 am

chimp wrote:Excellent thread.



Yes indeed. This is filling a lot of gaps in my knowledge.

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Re: 1L Summer Internship Tips?

Postby traydeuce » Wed Oct 19, 2011 4:14 am

Judicial externships are (a) useful, educational and fun experience, (b) helpful with getting a clerkship, (c) not really that helpful with firm hiring. But of all the legal jobs you could get as a 1L, I think an externship with a COA judge is, if you actually like law, the most fun.




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