rayiner wrote:Anonymous User wrote:I was faced with a *similar* decision, and I had the benefit of speaking to a lot of partners with whom I'd worked in my pre-LS job. The consensus was that the S&C/DPW/CSM grouping was a little higher on the preftige scale. Granted, these were old guys--the same types that think NYU is second-rate to CLS (I consulted them during the LS selection process, too--ended up at NYU, heh), but it's worth noting. I imagine their opinion is rooted only in the fact that the other three have been around longer.
That was the CW in the 1990s, when nobody would've put Cleary in the top-tier of NYC corporate firms. In the last 15-20 years, however, Cleary has developed top-notch capital markets and M&A practices. Meanwhile, Cravath became "just another V5," moving the whole V2-V7 grouping close together with only WLRK being in a really different league in prestige and selectivity.
DPW and S&C are still slightly better firms in that they have a somewhat wider range top-tier practice areas, but I can't imagine that having a measurable impact on exit options. Remember, when you start looking for another job, you'll be interacting with recruiters. Recruiters know the lay of the land, and they know that Cleary by and large hires from exactly the same pool of people as CSM/S&C/DPW/STB.
That's what I was driving at. The Old Guard is probably the only group that thinks there is a difference between the two, and although you deal with recruiters from the start, sometimes it's the Old Guard that has the final say-so. But again, I'm not arguing that there is any meaningful difference to persuade OP to choose against the firm with which he found a better fit.