Top of class 3L needs some help...

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Anonymous User
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Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:07 pm

Hey guys...I need some advice. My job search is extremely discouraging right now. I have applied to everything I can find...and haven't gotten many bites. I applied for a TON of clerkships at absolutely every level - nothing. I applied for every legal honors program - got an interview with one, but am pretty sure I am going to be dinged (some offers have already gone out, I've heard nothing). I've applied for every open fellowship and public interest position I can find a listing for, and even cold-mailed a ton of public interest offices in my desired areas. I don't know where else to look for open positions, or if I'm going about applying in the wrong way. I know it's a tough market, but I feel like I've done everything right (great grades, journal, targeted work experience). I'd like to get a job in government or public interest work.

Here is my info run down:
I'm in the top 10% of my class at a medium T2. I am a top editor on the main law review, and worked part time during my 2L and 3L year as a student assistant at a public interest law office (doing intake interviews, research, community outreach, etc.). My first summer I worked at the office I still work part time at now, and my second summer I worked at a public interest law office in Philadelphia. I am an officer in several clubs, have worked with the admissions office as a school ambassador, and have great letters of recommendation/references from professors and my employer.

Where can I look for job postings? Should I reapply to places I haven't heard from? I'd like to end up in the northeast (my school is in the midatlantic, I'm from the northeast) - ideally Boston for personal reasons (I know - insanely tough and saturated market, especially for someone who didn't go to school in Boston). Any advice? Any ideas? Any encouragement? Or am I screwed?

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thesealocust
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Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby thesealocust » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Should I reapply to places I haven't heard from? I'd like to end up in the northeast (my school is in the midatlantic, I'm from the northeast) - ideally Boston for personal reasons (I know - insanely tough and saturated market, especially for someone who didn't go to school in Boston).


Based on what you posted, this is your problem, and it is a HUGE problem. Your school simply doesn't have national pull. Getting employment in Boston won't be impossible, but all of your impressive credentials can't really be leveraged outside of your school's home market.

The kinds of places you want to work in the Northeast are probably actively hiring and interviewing people with your credentials... who attended (a) schools in the northeast or (b) top-tier law schools.

It sucks, but the conventional wisdom of "go to a national law school or one in a market you want to work in" exists for reasons exactly like this.

In your shoes, I would immediately turn my job search to the home market. That doesn't mean STOP looking in the northeast, but you need food on the table, neh? And even if you have to work in an unideal location for a bit, moving later will be easier with a resume than with a hat in your hand.

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suralin
better than you
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Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby suralin » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:40 pm

thesealocust wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Should I reapply to places I haven't heard from? I'd like to end up in the northeast (my school is in the midatlantic, I'm from the northeast) - ideally Boston for personal reasons (I know - insanely tough and saturated market, especially for someone who didn't go to school in Boston).


Based on what you posted, this is your problem, and it is a HUGE problem. Your school simply doesn't have national pull. Getting employment in Boston won't be impossible, but all of your impressive credentials can't really be leveraged outside of your school's home market.

The kinds of places you want to work in the Northeast are probably actively hiring and interviewing people with your credentials... who attended (a) schools in the northeast or (b) top-tier law schools.

It sucks, but the conventional wisdom of "go to a national law school or one in a market you want to work in" exists for reasons exactly like this.

In your shoes, I would immediately turn my job search to the home market. That doesn't mean STOP looking in the northeast, but you need food on the table, neh? And even if you have to work in an unideal location for a bit, moving later will be easier with a resume than with a hat in your hand.


This. Lack of sufficient ties, coupled with school rank, is your issue.

Anonymous User
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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:48 pm

Have you had someone look over your resume? If you can, have more than one person at your career services office look it over. Sometimes it's hard to get a feel for how you're coming off and a little outside perspective can help, and a lot of people with otherwise great credentials ding themselves on first impression.

On a related note, tailor the shit out of your resume and cover letters. Change your resume for nearly every employer to best match their needs. I've been pretty lucky with less-than-ideal stats because I put waaaaaaaaay too much time into every application. For example, as corny as it sounds, I'll sometimes add "relevant courses" to my experience section when it's clear that an employer is looking for a regulatory law junky or a financial services associate.

Anonymous User
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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:33 pm

Nm... :oops:

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IAFG
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Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby IAFG » Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:39 pm

What guidance have to gotten from the attorneys you worked for as an intern? Are all of them promising to keep their eyes open for something that opens up?

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studebaker07
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Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby studebaker07 » Sat Dec 22, 2012 7:24 pm

I am in almost the same shoes as you position wise (T30 school, Law Review (non-board position), top-10%), but I graduated this past May. I am having a hard time finding a position as well. Only I am having trouble even in the market I am in now (which is also where I graduated from). I apply to everything I can find, but no one wants to take me. Maybe I am just unemployable? I feel like giving up, like all of my friends have jobs and I don't. Maybe law school was just a waste for me, who knows. I have attorneys who are supposedly keeping their eyes out for positions, but nothing has come through that route. I am thinking that all the attorney spots in my market are filled and I am the one left without a chair after the music has stopped.

Didn't mean to hijack your thread; I just wanted to say I know how you feel and hopefully get some more feedback from other peoPle based on my situation that we could both maybe benefit from.

Agent
Posts: 340
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Re: Top of class 3L needs some help...

Postby Agent » Sun Dec 23, 2012 4:06 am

When I hear something like this, I tend to suspect undetected networking issues. PM if you want to kick some ideas around.

studebaker07 wrote:I am in almost the same shoes as you position wise (T30 school, Law Review (non-board position), top-10%), but I graduated this past May. I am having a hard time finding a position as well. Only I am having trouble even in the market I am in now (which is also where I graduated from). I apply to everything I can find, but no one wants to take me. Maybe I am just unemployable? I feel like giving up, like all of my friends have jobs and I don't. Maybe law school was just a waste for me, who knows. I have attorneys who are supposedly keeping their eyes out for positions, but nothing has come through that route. I am thinking that all the attorney spots in my market are filled and I am the one left without a chair after the music has stopped.

Didn't mean to hijack your thread; I just wanted to say I know how you feel and hopefully get some more feedback from other peoPle based on my situation that we could both maybe benefit from.




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