Externship Career Impact

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Externship Career Impact

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:10 am

May be overthinking this, but just thought I’d gauge responses. If you can identify any details about me, please just be content with your cleverness, and don’t post them. My school provides an externship program that lets you work at a nonprofit instead of take classes, and basically get a semester of credit. I really want to do this, in part because I haven’t been very happy in the place where my school is located, but will be very happy in the place where my externship is located. This is also important to me because I want to do public service work one day, and really need to beef up this aspect of my resume. Thing is, I also have a BigLaw SA coming up.

I know 3L is widely regarded as superfluous, but I’m just wondering whether there is a chance my firm would care, whether I should even bother telling them about it (if the topic of 3L comes up during the SA, it would seem difficult to avoid), whether other private employers would care if I want/need to go in-house or lateral before I try to move into public service, whether this could even help with getting a public service job in the future, etc.

I am just a little anxious because I don’t want this to put me in a place where both sets of employers are skeptical about me—public service employers because I already have an SA, and will work at a firm after graduation assuming I get an offer, and private employers because I chose to do this instead of traditional law school stuff. I mean the obvious case to make here is that this will actually probably be more useful in teaching me how to be a lawyer than law school. But I'm not sure if this is a common thing since I'd imagine (perhaps/hopefully wrongly) that not a lot of people with BigLaw do this. Thanks for any input.

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Re: Externship Career Impact

Postby thesealocust » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:45 am

You're over-thinking it.

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Re: Externship Career Impact

Postby LawIdiot86 » Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:04 am

You're over-thinking it. They won't care. With a little variation, employers care about, in order of priority:

1. What school you went to;
2. What your grades were;
3. What your personality is like;
4. If you were on journal (assuming #1-3 open jobs that care about this);
5. Pre-school work experience (IP, IM, etc.);
6. Clinic/Internships.

If I were you, my main concerns would be how this semester internship would impact my GPA for honors purposes and if the non-profit would give me as much substantive work to learn from as I would learn if I was in the classroom for the semester.

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