Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

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Lawstudent807
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Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Lawstudent807 » Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:12 pm

I am currently a 2L and I did not get a job through OCI, so I am applying to mid-sized firms. I am trying to figure out my schedule, last semester I took two "serious" classes, one skills class, and a judicial externship. This semester I have two "serious" classes (evidence and Professional responsibility) and thinking about taking a third but might not. I am just worried about what employers might think about in interviews. I probably want to do something in corporate law and the third class I was thinking about taking was corporate finance, but I have a finance degree, so it would be a repetition. Thoughts? Do employers care what classes you take?

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bjsesq
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby bjsesq » Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:14 pm

It can make a decent conversation piece during OCI if you get an interviewer that likes the topic, but generally they don't give a shit.

Anonymous User
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:19 pm

Biglaw definitely doesn't care. Specialized midlaw firms might care, depending. It's probably important to have taken some health law related class if you're applying to a firm that only does healthcare litigation, e.g.

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LeDique
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby LeDique » Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:22 pm

I mean not a ton, but if you're interested in smaller firms it can help demonstrate that you can hit the ground a bit quicker or smaller areas it can help to demonstrate an interest in that practice area. But the impact of those classes pales in comparison to internships/work/etc & your post sounds like it won't make a difference

Lawstudent807
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Lawstudent807 » Thu Jan 22, 2015 1:35 am

I think my option at this point would hopefully be mid-sized firms, so do they care about specialized classes per say?

Just a side note I am interested in corporate law but open minded. I am on the corporate journal too, so I would try to bring that up as a plus side for having some more corporate related background.

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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:Biglaw definitely doesn't care.


Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.

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bjsesq
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby bjsesq » Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:41 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Biglaw definitely doesn't care.


Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.

This is more exception than the rule, dude.

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logdog
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby logdog » Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:55 am

LeDique wrote:I mean not a ton, but if you're interested in smaller firms it can help demonstrate that you can hit the ground a bit quicker or smaller areas it can help to demonstrate an interest in that practice area. But the impact of those classes pales in comparison to internships/work/etc & your post sounds like it won't make a difference


This. If the firm is full service, then they probably don't care. If it's a boutique, then yeah, it would help to take classes related to the practice. I'm at a boutique lit firm and got the gig partially because I took related courses.

kaiser
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby kaiser » Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:00 pm

If you are shooting for a particular specialty, it can't hurt to show the firm that you are genuinely serious about it via your coursework, clinics, etc.

Lawstudent807
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Lawstudent807 » Thu Jan 22, 2015 1:57 pm

logdog wrote:
LeDique wrote:I mean not a ton, but if you're interested in smaller firms it can help demonstrate that you can hit the ground a bit quicker or smaller areas it can help to demonstrate an interest in that practice area. But the impact of those classes pales in comparison to internships/work/etc & your post sounds like it won't make a difference


This. If the firm is full service, then they probably don't care. If it's a boutique, then yeah, it would help to take classes related to the practice. I'm at a boutique lit firm and got the gig partially because I took related courses.



What classes would you recommend for someone who is interested in litigation? Maybe corporate related litigation? Would legal writing classes be of any use?

Hutz_and_Goodman
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Hutz_and_Goodman » Thu Jan 22, 2015 2:02 pm

They don't care
The people making the decision often won't even be looking at your transcript (it will be based on cv and interviews)
Someone I know screwed himself taking Remedies as a 3L bc he thought it was an important subject and he got a C
Don't be like him

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LeDique
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby LeDique » Thu Jan 22, 2015 2:21 pm

Lawstudent807 wrote:
logdog wrote:
LeDique wrote:I mean not a ton, but if you're interested in smaller firms it can help demonstrate that you can hit the ground a bit quicker or smaller areas it can help to demonstrate an interest in that practice area. But the impact of those classes pales in comparison to internships/work/etc & your post sounds like it won't make a difference


This. If the firm is full service, then they probably don't care. If it's a boutique, then yeah, it would help to take classes related to the practice. I'm at a boutique lit firm and got the gig partially because I took related courses.



What classes would you recommend for someone who is interested in litigation? Maybe corporate related litigation? Would legal writing classes be of any use?

If it's just lit generally, just take whatever. My advice is applicable if you're interested in a particular area. Commonplace here in CO is 3 to 5 attorney firms that do exclusively water law work. If I got a resume of someone who never took water law and had no experience in water law w/a 3.8 vs someone who took water law w/a 3.4, I'm probably taking the latter, right? But I'm taking someone who interned in water court, clerked at a similar firm, etc. over both of them. But if I'm hiring for a 50 attorney firm for litigation in general, I'm probably taking the one with the higher gpa and not looking at what classes they took.

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jbagelboy
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby jbagelboy » Thu Jan 22, 2015 2:51 pm

Professional responsibility qualifies as a "serious" class?

Lawstudent807
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Lawstudent807 » Thu Jan 22, 2015 3:08 pm

jbagelboy wrote:Professional responsibility qualifies as a "serious" class?



Serious/Required*

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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 22, 2015 4:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Biglaw definitely doesn't care.


Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.


Yes, sampled every firm. They all said they don't care. :roll:

"Recommended classes" are not the same as the firm actually caring which classes you took.

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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 22, 2015 5:19 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Biglaw definitely doesn't care.


Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.


Yes, sampled every firm. They all said they don't care. :roll:

"Recommended classes" are not the same as the firm actually caring which classes you took.



So firms don't care?

KM2016
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby KM2016 » Thu Jan 22, 2015 5:36 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Biglaw definitely doesn't care.


Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.


Yes, sampled every firm. They all said they don't care. :roll:

"Recommended classes" are not the same as the firm actually caring which classes you took.



So firms don't care?


Correct. TCR is that Biglaw firms don't care at all.

Anonymous User
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 22, 2015 7:39 pm

KM2016 wrote:
Wow, did you really sample every firm? I know of someone going to work at one of the largest firms who was told to take a class covering mutual funds because she was going to work in the funds group.


Yes, sampled every firm. They all said they don't care. :roll:

"Recommended classes" are not the same as the firm actually caring which classes you took.[/quote]


So firms don't care?[/quote]

Correct. TCR is that Biglaw firms don't care at all.[/quote]


But most mid-sized firms and smaller firms care what classes you take then?

Anonymous User
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 22, 2015 7:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
But most mid-sized firms and smaller firms care what classes you take then?



No. They may care if they are a specialty firm; e.g., you should take Trusts and Estates before working for a small T&E firm. They probably do not care if they are a full-service firm or are generalist within a broad area (such as a firm that does general commercial litigation). Biglaw firms are all full-service or at least generalist, so the first point is irrelevant to them.

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LeDique
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby LeDique » Thu Jan 22, 2015 7:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
But most mid-sized firms and smaller firms care what classes you take then?



No. They may care if they are a specialty firm; e.g., you should take Trusts and Estates before working for a small T&E firm. They probably do not care if they are a full-service firm or are generalist within a broad area (such as a firm that does general commercial litigation). Biglaw firms are all full-service or at least generalist, so the first point is irrelevant to them.


Exactly. Firms tend to be less full-service/generalist as they get smaller tho, so maybe it's true that "most" care, but that's not really the point.

Lawstudent807
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Re: Do Law Firms care what classes you took?

Postby Lawstudent807 » Thu Jan 22, 2015 8:52 pm

Thank You to everyone who replied, it has been very helpful and I will be making my decision soon. Hopefully it will be the right decision. :)




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