1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

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Anonymous User
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1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:47 pm

*I am posting anonymously even though I don't post that often because my screenname + my post history would out me and I would rather not have people at my school reading this post*

Finished my first year, I go to a T30-T40. I'm still waiting for official ranks but know that I will be in the Top 15-20% range. No relevant WE, working public interest this summer, no real target market for me, but my school "dominates" its state (not on a coast) and I would be fine working in a city in that state. Interviewing skills are average (I think), and I am not URM. Waiting to hear back for Law Review.

Certainly rising 3Ls and students that have just graduated at my school could probably be a better source for this conversation, but I don't really know too many of them.

I want to know what my chances might be at at private sector employment of some kind. Do I have a shot at getting something from OCI? Mass Mailing? Not the strongest networker, but yes I am trying. I would be interested in biglaw, or the mythical midlaw, even in-house. How can I give myself a shot? What can I do to improve my chances (if there is any) at this point?

What is the best route for someone like me who just wants a job out of school that can train me well, and leave some doors open?

ZyzzBrah
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby ZyzzBrah » Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:58 pm

Im at a school in the same range (dominates the local market), my friends in that class rank range did quite well during OCI (a lot of NLJ250s, some v100s), but I am in a state with a good amount of biglaw firms.

Apply to everything, srs.

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:05 pm

Shameless Bump. Anyone?

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chuckbass
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby chuckbass » Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:09 pm

Well since you're posting anonymously why don't you post your school, then people from your school can help you out. Anonymous plus not identifying your school is redundant.

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:04 pm

OP here - CU Boulder.

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stillwater
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby stillwater » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:16 pm

probably dead in the water for biglaw

Hutz_and_Goodman
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Hutz_and_Goodman » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:31 pm

stillwater wrote:probably dead in the water for biglaw


I don't see how this could be right. Assuming Colorado is ~10% big law it seems like you're in the running assuming you interview okay.

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:36 pm

I was in a very similar position and struck out. Other people in the same position did not strike out. You have a chance, but its far from guaranteed.

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stillwater
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby stillwater » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:37 pm

CU is more like ~5% biglaw.

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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:54 pm

Well, one thing to keep in mind is that the legal market in Denver just isn't very big, and there are few biglaw firms. You will probably get some interviews through OCI - top 10% does better, but top 15-20% should get something. It may not be that easy to convert interviews into callbacks/offers, though. The big firms - the branch offices of actual biglaw - tend to hire either the very top CU/DU students, or T14 students from Colorado looking to come back home.

Midlaw and small law exist, but probably won't hire through OCI - they're more likely to hire through CDOnline throughout the year, and they're not going to do the SA --> permanent offer thing. However, if you can get the mid- or small law gig, and work throughout the year, not just summer, you'll have a better chance of converting that to a permanent position; that's how people I know did it.

Almost all OCI firms will be Denver - possibly a couple of Boulder firms, and maybe the occasional Albuquerque/Cheyenne/Boise gig. If you want somewhere besides Denver, you'd be better off mass-mailing and networking. (I can't comment beyond that, I didn't do those things.) That would also probably work better for the small/midlaw firms.

Honestly, I would say that it's maybe 10% of the class that gets the traditional 2L SA -> permanent offer kind of job (and even those will not all be what is traditionally seen as biglaw - some of those jobs will be the local big firms, which are really good firms but not big by NYC/DC/Chicago/LA standards). Many more people *do* end up in firms, both for 2L and after graduation, but by far the biggest number of firms in the market are mid and small, so they don't offer permanent positions until much later. That might be well after graduation. In fact, I think Law School Transparency slightly underestimates the employment outcomes out of CU, because (at least for my class) I think everyone has ended up with jobs, but it took a bunch of people longer than the 9-month-post-grad statistic. (I mean, I realize that's not going to make CU look *much* better than LST suggests, but I think it's worth keeping in mind.)

(Also, I graduated 2011, so my class was really screwed for firm hiring. We had something like half the number of firms come to OCI than had shown up the previous year; things may have improved somewhat since then.)

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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:00 pm

OP here. Thanks for the detailed run down, thats what I was looking for.

Lord Randolph McDuff
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Lord Randolph McDuff » Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:14 pm

Rising 3L at CU here. Do mass mail. Do OCI cuz top 20% can get interviews, so why not. Learn to network. Your grades will give you a shot but you gotta network. I know a guy in my class who is top 5 students and couldn't get big law, and several people who had your grades and got 2L SAs. People skills and networking matter. Also luck is nice. Keep in mind there will also be people with better grades than you who don't want big law. Your grades might be better than you think.

If you keep your grades up and you network persistently, you chances of private sector employment are great. May not be at a big law firm though. The fifth biggest law firm in Colorado has 90 local attorneys. http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/blog/ ... st-63.html. There are a bunch of firms in the 10-25 attorney category that pay well (80-90k) and offer great training and growth. Email a few of them and see if you can meet up for coffee. Lawyers like to talk to younger people and give advice. Especially litigators. They really love to talk.

Good luck you're in good shape. When you network and meet with attorneys be likable and slip in this line/topic, its a good one.

Anonymous User wrote:
What is the best route for someone like me who just wants a job out of school that can train me well, and leave some doors open?

Anonymous User
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 15, 2013 1:38 am

what do those in the other 90% of the class do? join the air force?

shock259
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Re: 1L, Top 15-20% at a T30-T40, Tell it to me Straight.

Postby shock259 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 10:29 am

Biglaw is really, really elusive in Colorado. There's only a few national firms with offices in Denver, and they have really small summer classes. As others have said, you'll be in good shape (with networking/mailing/etc) for placement at a mid-size or smaller firm. But I wouldn't get your hopes up for OCI. Still do it, though.

I transferred to Columbia from CU Boulder. Was top ~8%, maybe slightly above average interviewer, strong ties to CO (grew up there, all of my family is there), and Columbia on the resume. And I still wasn't able to convert any callbacks into offers with big firms in CO. So I'll be camping out in NYC biglaw for a while until I can find a way back.

Try and knock next semester out of the park. It's actually easier to improve second semester rank-wise because a lot of people will drop down. My GPA was lower second semester, but other ppl dropped a lot more than me so I ended up keeping my class rank. But if I could have done a little better than I did first semester, I would have gained a lot on the class rank.

Also, if you do even better next semester and you want biglaw more than you want to work in Colorado (at least initially), consider transferring. I won't go into all that here, and you'll definitely want to proceed with caution, as many schools will not be worth it. Won't get into it here, but PM me if you want details.




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