Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

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levinlaw1994
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:56 pm

Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby levinlaw1994 » Mon Apr 13, 2015 5:06 pm

Currently a 1L at UF Law:

*Now*
- ~3.0 GPA
- VP of Criminal Law Assoc.
- Enrolled in Criminal Justice Certificate

Summer: Try to write on to LR, Moot Court, Journals. Audition for Trial Team. Locked down a political internship in DC with some legal research involved + taking Federal Criminal Law online.

*2L/3L Years*
- Criminal Clinic: Prosecution
- Externship in State Attorney's Office
- Pro Bono and Community Service Hours Certifications
- Substantive leadership positions in 2-3 additional legal organizations

My goal is to get into an ASA job when I graduate. Given my law school path, how good is my shot in the FL legal market? Any advice on things I should be doing or things I should avoid to achieve this goal? Specifics are appreciated. Thanks!

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MarkfromWI
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby MarkfromWI » Mon Apr 13, 2015 5:41 pm

Is the DC political gig paid? I can't speak to FL specifically, but general consensus is that demonstrated dedication to the line of work is what's most important when it comes to those kinds of jobs. You'll have that in spades if you keep up with the curricular path you've laid out, but doing a volunteer internship at an SA's office would be an extra boost and add more relevant experience. If you're going to be unpaid either way, you may want to look into it.

If the DC gig is paid, though, you should probably just stick with that.

levinlaw1994
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Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:56 pm

Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby levinlaw1994 » Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:13 pm

Unfortunately, no. However, it has amazing networking opportunity. Taking this gig also lets me apply for a generous scholarship to study abroad in Germany the 2nd half of my summer since the internship runs May 18-July 10 and the Germany thing goes from July 20-August 14. Idk how much employers look at study abroad given that its become common resume filler these days but I figure, at the minimum, its an easy 3 credits for my JD

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deadpanic
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby deadpanic » Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:22 pm

levinlaw1994 wrote:Locked down a political internship in DC with some legal research involved + taking Federal Criminal Law online.


I think this would actually be more hurtful than helpful (and taking federal crim law will be waste for the ASA). A political internship in DC does absolutely nothing to help you in securing a local criminal prosecution job. What they want to see is a demonstrated interest plus experience in prosecution, particularly in the courtroom.

Political internship is setting you up to work on the Hill/work in some policy related job, which is totally different than being in the trenches prosecuting cases. You will not be doing the right networking because if you want to be an ASA, you should intern directly with their office. The DC network is likely not to help at all. If it is for the local Congressman who is very influential in the ASA's office then maybe, but still better to intern with the ASA directly.

We had several of my classmates study abroad in law school - it will give you no boost whatsoever and will just cost you more money.

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Yukos
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby Yukos » Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:32 pm

I can imagine some narrow circumstances where studying abroad would be helpful but I really doubt a state's attorney office would care at all. Even if you take the DC internship I would come back to FL and see if you can pick up some work that is a) in crim law and b) allows you to network with people who might hire you.

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baal hadad
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby baal hadad » Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:38 pm

levinlaw1994 wrote:Currently a 1L at UF Law:

*Now*
- ~3.0 GPA
- VP of Criminal Law Assoc.
- Enrolled in Criminal Justice Certificate

Summer: Try to write on to LR, Moot Court, Journals. Audition for Trial Team. Locked down a political internship in DC with some legal research involved + taking Federal Criminal Law online.

*2L/3L Years*
- Criminal Clinic: Prosecution
- Externship in State Attorney's Office
- Pro Bono and Community Service Hours Certifications
- Substantive leadership positions in 2-3 additional legal organizations

My goal is to get into an ASA job when I graduate. Given my law school path, how good is my shot in the FL legal market? Any advice on things I should be doing or things I should avoid to achieve this goal? Specifics are appreciated. Thanks!

What you should have done is ASA this summer

Political job and study abroad isn't really that helpful

Work for prosecutors as soon as possible

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iShotFirst
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby iShotFirst » Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:40 pm

The DC thing is 1L summer? Its fine to do that its something different, can be something to talk about. With your externship at the SAO and presumably a 2L summer interning you are in a great position. One bit of advice would be when extern/intern at SAO to work in misdemeanors instead of felonies because its more likely you will be able to speak in court, argue motions, etc. (at least in Miami). Felony interns generally observe court, review evidence, talk to witnesses etc but not much courtroom stuff.

As a supervisor ASA in Miami, I can tell you that with this plan if it all works out would make you at least on par with other hired applicants in terms of resume (I only see the resumes of those hired, not those rejected). With a good externship during the year and other classes/clinics that show your interest in criminal law the summers may not even matter - i never did any criminal stuff during my summers but did heavy criminal and public interest-oriented clinics/externships during the year.

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deadpanic
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby deadpanic » Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:15 pm

iShotFirst wrote:The DC thing is 1L summer? Its fine to do that its something different, can be something to talk about. With your externship at the SAO and presumably a 2L summer interning you are in a great position. One bit of advice would be when extern/intern at SAO to work in misdemeanors instead of felonies because its more likely you will be able to speak in court, argue motions, etc. (at least in Miami). Felony interns generally observe court, review evidence, talk to witnesses etc but not much courtroom stuff.

As a supervisor ASA in Miami, I can tell you that with this plan if it all works out would make you at least on par with other hired applicants in terms of resume (I only see the resumes of those hired, not those rejected). With a good externship during the year and other classes/clinics that show your interest in criminal law the summers may not even matter - i never did any criminal stuff during my summers but did heavy criminal and public interest-oriented clinics/externships during the year.


I overlooked the externship at the ASA; that is obviously good.

But try to do your 2L summer there as well. Just wanted to emphasize the DC thing & study abroad thing will not help.

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iShotFirst
Posts: 460
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Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby iShotFirst » Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:56 pm

deadpanic wrote:
iShotFirst wrote:The DC thing is 1L summer? Its fine to do that its something different, can be something to talk about. With your externship at the SAO and presumably a 2L summer interning you are in a great position. One bit of advice would be when extern/intern at SAO to work in misdemeanors instead of felonies because its more likely you will be able to speak in court, argue motions, etc. (at least in Miami). Felony interns generally observe court, review evidence, talk to witnesses etc but not much courtroom stuff.

As a supervisor ASA in Miami, I can tell you that with this plan if it all works out would make you at least on par with other hired applicants in terms of resume (I only see the resumes of those hired, not those rejected). With a good externship during the year and other classes/clinics that show your interest in criminal law the summers may not even matter - i never did any criminal stuff during my summers but did heavy criminal and public interest-oriented clinics/externships during the year.


I overlooked the externship at the ASA; that is obviously good.

But try to do your 2L summer there as well. Just wanted to emphasize the DC thing & study abroad thing will not help.


Agreed, if you don't do your 2L summer in a prosecutor's office you are needlessly hamstringing yourself.

levinlaw1994
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Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:56 pm

Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby levinlaw1994 » Mon Apr 13, 2015 11:28 pm

Appreciate the advice guys! Thanks for all your thoughts.

As for the political thing, I was Poli Sci undergrad and have several years of background in policy and political work. I ended up choosing what I was familiar with and had connections to. Hindsight being 20/20, should have worked for the SAO. Glad to hear it won't sink me but I definitely won't make the same mistake twice.

On the bright side, I've got classes the next two main semesters (Fall '15 & Spring '16) with the professor that manages the criminal clinic at UF- Professor Deckle (prosecuted on the Ted Bundy case back in the day :shock: ). Ideally, if I bust my ass, that connection will help me get the clinic during Summer '16 and follow that up with an externship at the SAO in Fall '16- again, working as hard as they'll let me.

I hear you guys loud & clear on the summer stuff and generally agree with your points on their subtance. However, if I take summer classes, I'll be able to graduate in 2 1/2 years vs 3 and (hopefully) pass the February Bar Exam in Feb. '17. Plus, it'll likely offer me a GPA boost since I've been sweating pretty bad over my meager 3.0. God knows I want to keep the school costs as short as possible in duration too since I'm not working during law school.

What are your opinions on the pros & cons of graduating early? Importance of GPA? Again, thanks for your time!

bjohnsobf
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Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:36 pm

Re: Florida Assistant State Attorney Positions

Postby bjohnsobf » Tue Apr 14, 2015 10:30 am

I went to FSU, in my experience state attorney's office's don't care about law review as much they prefer mock trial team or moot court. You shouldn't have a problem you go to the top ranked law school in the state with the most extensive alumni in the state. Make sure to get FL bar app in so you can get clearance for Certified Legal Intern. I think you're a lock especially if your externship is CLI.

GPA is always important but not as important to them as it would be to a firm, no clients to impress. Get your CLI and apply to summer in Orlando the SA Jeff Ashton is a UF alum I don't see why he wouldn't hire you just tell him he inspired you when you watched him try Casey Anthony on TV and that the jury was insane. Florida prosecutor offices are flooded with Tier 3/4 students FAMU/Barry/Coastal. you shouldn't have any problem statewide especially in central and northern florida. Anyone from T14 schools in the north want to go to Miami if they want to come to Florida because location is the only plus and their parents prob have money. Floirda state attorney and public defender pay is horrendous you'll start at like 39k you won't move up much or very quickly.




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