Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 01, 2014 11:27 pm

So I might have locked down an externship with a federal district court judge for my 1L summer. I go to UChi/NU and I my number one preference is to work in Chicago after I graduate. The only problem is that I'm from the west coast and the externship is out west.

Will this potentially impact my job search for 2L summer? I've heard that working in Chicago my 1L summer would probably be smartest since I don't have many ties to Chicago, although I do have family that live there. I'm still applying for jobs in Chicago and I don't have to officially accept the position yet, but I'm curious if anyone has any advice as to whether I should lean more heavily towards working in Chicago. I'm just hesitant of rejecting a bird in the hand if it wouldn't kill my chances for 2L summer.

Thanks for the help.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 02, 2014 1:56 am

It won't help establish ties and the Chi market really cares about them. If it was CoA, it might be a different story, but for a dct judge they'll likely question your ties. Just be prepared to have a good answer to "why chicago" or be ready to hear "so you grew up in cali... and then you worked in cali last summer...." Your summer is something that comes up in almost every interview. Make sure you work in your love for the city in any "why our firm" question.

Most everyone can get a job for 1L summer (at least at UChi), and lots of the time clinic jobs are the last to go and they are an amazing experience. A 1L job is a 1L job, so if you're not married to the idea of working for a judge it may be smarter to just get a job in Chicago.

...not to mention you could get a paid job (or at least PI funding at UChi)

I worked for a judge in Chicago last summer and I've had lots of friends tell me if they could re-do OCI in chicago they would sell ties harder.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 02, 2014 2:13 am

I'm a 2L at UChi/NU from the West Coast, and I agree with the previous poster that Chicago ties were more important than I anticipated. I was surprised at how many people who had legitimate ties to Chicago struck out or struggled during OCI with Chicago firms. I spent my 1L summer in Chicago and was still majorly grilled about my commitment to the region during OCI. I did end up getting one Chicago offer, but I think that was more luck than not. Point is: if you want Chicago at OCI, try to do 1L summer here. But know that even that may not be enough to establish sufficient ties with most firms.

crystalball
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 3:52 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby crystalball » Sat Jan 04, 2014 5:49 pm

If your ties to a city aren't obvious based on your resume, should you mention them in your cover letter or just be prepared to answer questions about it during an interview? (in other words, will firms not extend an interview to an applicant if their ties to the city aren't obvious from the application?)

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 04, 2014 6:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 2L at UChi/NU from the West Coast, and I agree with the previous poster that Chicago ties were more important than I anticipated. I was surprised at how many people who had legitimate ties to Chicago struck out or struggled during OCI with Chicago firms.


Alternatively, that just shows that ties are insufficient to get an offer in Chicago. It can be a tough market to crack. If you're in the bottom third of your class at Northwestern, then you shouldn't be surprised if you strike out in Chicago, even if you were born and raised here. If you don't have the grades, nobody cares about your ties.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22814
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:39 pm

crystalball wrote:If your ties to a city aren't obvious based on your resume, should you mention them in your cover letter or just be prepared to answer questions about it during an interview? (in other words, will firms not extend an interview to an applicant if their ties to the city aren't obvious from the application?)

I would definitely mention it in the cover letter.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:19 pm

Similar situation. I'm from a large Midwestern city and want to practice in Chicago eventually. However, I don't go to school in Chicago (lower T14) and I don't have any real ties to the city specifically. I've been offered a judicial internship (federal district court) in my hometown and have upcoming interviews for ones in Chicago. Same "bird in the hand" problem - if I should take the internship in my hometown or keep holding out for something in Chicago so I can try to establish ties there.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 2L at UChi/NU from the West Coast, and I agree with the previous poster that Chicago ties were more important than I anticipated. I was surprised at how many people who had legitimate ties to Chicago struck out or struggled during OCI with Chicago firms.


Alternatively, that just shows that ties are insufficient to get an offer in Chicago. It can be a tough market to crack. If you're in the bottom third of your class at Northwestern, then you shouldn't be surprised if you strike out in Chicago, even if you were born and raised here. If you don't have the grades, nobody cares about your ties.


I think that's rather dismissive of the issue. I'm a different NU 2L from the one above, and I know several people with above median grades and ties (although not born and raised) who struck out in the Chicago market while getting good offers from NY, CA, etc. Chicago firms care about your connections to the city. Sure, if you are a strong interviewer with good grades you have a chance at an offer with no ties whatsoever, but you also might not get one, and if there is a similarly situated candidate with ties going against you, I'd put my money on them every time.

whereskyle
Posts: 713
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:37 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby whereskyle » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:07 pm

Will be attending NU. No professional ties to Chi. I'm wondering about personal ties vs. professional ties. Will my saying "my wife is doing a PhD in Evanston and will be doing so for the next 3 years" at the time of OCI give my argument for wanting Chicago weight? It seems to me that personal considerations such as these are significant. Is that the consensus? Moreover, does presenting evidence of "settling down" in personal terms help?

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby rad lulz » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:17 pm

m
Last edited by rad lulz on Thu Sep 08, 2016 11:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
splitsplat
Posts: 607
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:25 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby splitsplat » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:25 pm

whereskyle wrote:Will be attending NU. No professional ties to Chi. I'm wondering about personal ties vs. professional ties. Will my saying "my wife is doing a PhD in Evanston and will be doing so for the next 3 years" at the time of OCI give my argument for wanting Chicago weight? It seems to me that personal considerations such as these are significant. Is that the consensus? Moreover, does presenting evidence of "settling down" in personal terms help?


I'll disagree with rad on this. I think moving out a significant other (read WIFE and not just a GF) is great for showing commitment to the area. I know it helped me get past the ties question for a lot of Chicago firms despite growing up and going to school in California.

Edit to add: I also did my summer in Chicago, which didn't hurt.

whereskyle
Posts: 713
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:37 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby whereskyle » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:34 pm

splitsplat wrote:
whereskyle wrote:Will be attending NU. No professional ties to Chi. I'm wondering about personal ties vs. professional ties. Will my saying "my wife is doing a PhD in Evanston and will be doing so for the next 3 years" at the time of OCI give my argument for wanting Chicago weight? It seems to me that personal considerations such as these are significant. Is that the consensus? Moreover, does presenting evidence of "settling down" in personal terms help?


I'll disagree with rad on this. I think moving out a significant other (read WIFE and not just a GF) is great for showing commitment to the area. I know it helped me get past the ties question for a lot of Chicago firms despite growing up and going to school in California.

Edit to add: I also did my summer in Chicago, which didn't hurt.


Awesome. I think rad is right that PhDs must be willing to move to Kansas if that's where the job is, so my answer will have to address our commitment to Chi post bacc. Thanks for the input.

whereskyle
Posts: 713
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:37 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby whereskyle » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:39 pm

whereskyle wrote:
splitsplat wrote:
whereskyle wrote:Will be attending NU. No professional ties to Chi. I'm wondering about personal ties vs. professional ties. Will my saying "my wife is doing a PhD in Evanston and will be doing so for the next 3 years" at the time of OCI give my argument for wanting Chicago weight? It seems to me that personal considerations such as these are significant. Is that the consensus? Moreover, does presenting evidence of "settling down" in personal terms help?


I'll disagree with rad on this. I think moving out a significant other (read WIFE and not just a GF) is great for showing commitment to the area. I know it helped me get past the ties question for a lot of Chicago firms despite growing up and going to school in California.

Edit to add: I also did my summer in Chicago, which didn't hurt.


Awesome. I think rad is right that PhDs must be willing to move to Kansas if that's where the job is, so my answer will have to address our commitment to Chi post bacc. Thanks for the input.


Sorry, Kansas.

User avatar
berndie90
Posts: 82
Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 1:37 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby berndie90 » Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:02 pm

I'm from Milwaukee and will be attending NU - are my close ties to the region enough to be considered with some ties? Or will the proximity of home be judged similarly to any other East Cost/West Coast city?

User avatar
jn7
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2013 3:33 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby jn7 » Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:06 pm

berndie90 wrote:I'm from Milwaukee and will be attending NU - are my close ties to the region enough to be considered with some ties? Or will the proximity of home be judged similarly to any other East Cost/West Coast city?


I'm wondering about this as well. A friend of mine (2L) said that it isn't difficult to sell Chicago ties if you are from one of the smaller cities/states in the midwest around Chicago like Indiana, Ohio etc. since they'll know it's pretty obvious you'd love to work there rather than the smaller market + same region.

DportIA
Posts: 242
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:18 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby DportIA » Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:20 pm

I attend a midwestern law school and grew up in the Quad Cities, which is two and a half hours away from Chicago. I have been to Chicago literally hundreds of times, and the firms I interviewed with in Chicago seemed skeptical that I was: (1) Knowledgeable about the city, and (2) that I was truly committed to living in Chicago. At the end of the day, I received and accepted an offer with a large firm in Chicago, but I had as many callbacks with San Francisco firms as Chicago firms, and I had been in the Bay Area once in my life for two days.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273171
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Mar 25, 2014 3:10 pm

berndie90 wrote:I'm from Milwaukee and will be attending NU - are my close ties to the region enough to be considered with some ties? Or will the proximity of home be judged similarly to any other East Cost/West Coast city?


I'm from Columbus, Ohio, and people seemed to buy the "stay in the midwest" sales pitch.

User avatar
BuckinghamB
Posts: 457
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:37 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby BuckinghamB » Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:41 pm

berndie90 wrote:I'm from Milwaukee and will be attending NU - are my close ties to the region enough to be considered with some ties? Or will the proximity of home be judged similarly to any other East Cost/West Coast city?


Your ties should be fine for Chicago from my experience.

User avatar
homestyle28
Posts: 2312
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 12:48 pm

Re: Establishing Chicago Ties and 1L jobs

Postby homestyle28 » Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:10 pm

I tend to think Chicago is hard to crack more because of factors other than ties. It's an attractive city, probably the most attractive to the most people in the Midwest, so lots of people want to work here, but it has a relatively smaller legal market (at least compared to NYC) and has been slower to recover, so class sizes remain small. If you want to work in Chicago presumably you have a good story as to why (beyond it's a cool city) if you're grades are where you need them to be at NU/Uchi (think upper 1/3 to upper 1/4 to be safe) you'll have a shot at a job in town. But given the nature of the market there are no guarantees even with outstanding ties and/or great grades.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.