What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

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What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:03 pm

I'm currently a 2L and I will be doing a SA this coming summer in a large regional firm focusing on mostly litigation work.

I was wondering what you all think is a good spring semester externship/clinic to prepare for this type of work. I am currently looking at a community legal clinic, prosecutor's office, and public defender's office. (And of course, I welcome any suggestions outside of this as well, these are just some recommendations from career services)

I have previously worked for a criminal law judge, at a law firm, and in house. My goal is to do legal writing, get some client interaction in, and get some practical skills for this summer.

Thanks in advance for your input/suggestions!

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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:51 pm

Prosecutors offices can (depending on the office) be really great and give you a lot of hands on experience early. Also, if there are any agencies that the firm deals with (SEC, NLRB, DOL, whatever), that'd be a good option too.

zomginternets
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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby zomginternets » Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:12 pm

extern at a state trial court (not kidding). It does not look glamorous on your resume, but you'll learn to churn out mid-high quality work at a fast pace, which is an important skill for regional firm (IMO).

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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Prosecutors offices can (depending on the office) be really great and give you a lot of hands on experience early. Also, if there are any agencies that the firm deals with (SEC, NLRB, DOL, whatever), that'd be a good option too.


Is there a reason that you're specifying prosecutors above public defenders?

=

zomginternets wrote:extern at a state trial court (not kidding). It does not look glamorous on your resume, but you'll learn to churn out mid-high quality work at a fast pace, which is an important skill for regional firm (IMO).


When you say state trial court, do you mean working for a judge?

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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 26, 2012 8:34 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Prosecutors offices can (depending on the office) be really great and give you a lot of hands on experience early. Also, if there are any agencies that the firm deals with (SEC, NLRB, DOL, whatever), that'd be a good option too.


Is there a reason that you're specifying prosecutors above public defenders?


Prosecutors end up at law firms and visa versa; public defenders don't really. At a prosecutor's office you might see cases that are more applicable--white collar, corruption--than at a public defenders office. and the type of work at a PD is more interviewing clients, negotiating pleas, standing up in court on a misdemeanor or arraignment. All those things are fine but nothing like being a summer associate. If you want to prepare for that, a prosecutors office tends to have more research and writing, bigger cases with discovery, etc.

It's a better fit for people who don't want to ultimately go into criminal law or legal services.

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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby RPK34 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 9:30 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Prosecutors offices can (depending on the office) be really great and give you a lot of hands on experience early. Also, if there are any agencies that the firm deals with (SEC, NLRB, DOL, whatever), that'd be a good option too.


Is there a reason that you're specifying prosecutors above public defenders?


Prosecutors end up at law firms and visa versa; public defenders don't really. At a prosecutor's office you might see cases that are more applicable--white collar, corruption--than at a public defenders office. and the type of work at a PD is more interviewing clients, negotiating pleas, standing up in court on a misdemeanor or arraignment. All those things are fine but nothing like being a summer associate. If you want to prepare for that, a prosecutors office tends to have more research and writing, bigger cases with discovery, etc.

It's a better fit for people who don't want to ultimately go into criminal law or legal services.


Yeah, from my time in a state trial court, PDs aren't usually the ones writing long briefs or doing much writing at all. I think most of them would rather just take a below average guilty plea than spend a bunch of extra time researching case law and writing a brief up for a judge. PDs do a lot of drug/low level crime stuff, which is usually pretty straight forward 4th amendment stuff. The judges know the standards, so it all just comes down to what they say at oral arguments. PD probably wouldn't be the way to go.

If you want to find a job that has a lot of writing, usually federal courts are pretty good. State trial courts tend to pump through trials, while a lot of the stuff at the federal courts involve a lot more pretrial stuff. Most state trial judges I worked with had the mentality of "don't waste everyone's time with motions and hearings, just get all the evidence out there, and go to trial." That said, I did get to do a decent amount of research with a state trial judge, just not nearly as much as some other people I know who did federal stuff.

Couple others that I heard were pretty good were USAOs and state attorney generals.

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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby anon168 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:55 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Prosecutors offices can (depending on the office) be really great and give you a lot of hands on experience early. Also, if there are any agencies that the firm deals with (SEC, NLRB, DOL, whatever), that'd be a good option too.


Is there a reason that you're specifying prosecutors above public defenders?


People may respect PDs, but no one really wants to hire them.

It's like the broccoli you get when you order a steak. Everyone goes to Morton's for the red meat. You sort of just order the steamed broccoli because you kind of feel like it balances things out. Same with PDs.

zomginternets
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Re: What is a good 2L spring externship to prep for a SA in lit?

Postby zomginternets » Fri Oct 26, 2012 2:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
zomginternets wrote:extern at a state trial court (not kidding). It does not look glamorous on your resume, but you'll learn to churn out mid-high quality work at a fast pace, which is an important skill for regional firm (IMO).


When you say state trial court, do you mean working for a judge?


Yes. In federal court, the judges tend to want memos that are well researched and well written. Although I have not externed in state court, I get the impression from talking with people who have that, because of the case load, judges are happy with just a decently researched and written memo. The trade-off is that you'll do twice as many as you would as a federal court extern.




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