Questions Regarding Summer Internship with a DA

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shumrima
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:56 pm

Questions Regarding Summer Internship with a DA

Postby shumrima » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:45 pm

I am a 1L, and naturally I have a lot of questions about school and jobs. I am considering pursuing a summer internship with a DA of a large city in the summer of 2012. I think it would be exciting to work in a DA's office considering I am interested in gaining trial experience, and not to mention criminal law is very interesting. However, I do not know if I want to fully pursue a criminal law related career in the future. I see this opportunity as a way to explore different fields. Another option would be to work with firms which practice commercial litigation. Personally, I think working at a DA's office would be much more exciting and interesting, at least for now. I have talked with an agent of our school's career office and she said that working with a DA will not necessarily restrict options to governmental agencies or criminal law in the future. I would like to ask fellow students/grads their thoughts on the situation!

I have a few questions:

Is it not wise for me to pursue a first summer job in an area of law which I may not pursue in the future?

Is working with a DA good experience regardless of whether I want to pursue criminal law?

Will working with a governmental agency my first summer restrict me from pursuing jobs with private firms in the future?

If you have any thoughts or advice, please respond! Thanks!

berkeleykel06
Posts: 292
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:39 am

Re: Questions Regarding Summer Internship with a DA

Postby berkeleykel06 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:52 pm

shumrima wrote:Is it not wise for me to pursue a first summer job in an area of law which I may not pursue in the future?

Many/most people I know had summer jobs in areas they won't work in in the future. But if you can get a job in an area you want to pursue in the future, I would think that is a better option.

shumrima wrote:Is working with a DA good experience regardless of whether I want to pursue criminal law?

It seems about as good of an experience as anything else. If you like it, I wouldn't worry too much about not doing criminal law in the future. But again, if you can get a job in what you think you'll actually pursue it would probably be better for you (both to demonstrate your interest, and because you may end up hating it and wanting to go a different direction)

shumrima wrote:Will working with a governmental agency my first summer restrict me from pursuing jobs with private firms in the future?
Absolutely not.

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vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Questions Regarding Summer Internship with a DA

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Feb 05, 2012 5:24 pm

shumrima wrote:I have a few questions:

Is it not wise for me to pursue a first summer job in an area of law which I may not pursue in the future?

You should use law school to explore as many different areas of the law that you can. Even if you don't pursue them later, you might learn something valuable from trying. Also, criminal law gives you exposure to litigation and courtroom procedure pretty quickly, if you're in the right place. The real-world courtroom perspective can be useful later if you go into other litigation fields.

shumrima wrote:Is working with a DA good experience regardless of whether I want to pursue criminal law?

It can be. Depends on how they put you to work. If you get to draft motions, observe courtroom appearances, etc., while you're there, it can be a huge plus.

shumrima wrote:Will working with a governmental agency my first summer restrict me from pursuing jobs with private firms in the future?

Certainly not. There are few 1L summer positions at private firms, so most people do gov't/PI work their 1L year, whether they want that kind of work or not. If you want to go into a litigation practice, then doing something that gives you litigation exposure (like a DA's office) can be valuable.




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