Anonymous User wrote:encore1101 wrote:Anonymous User wrote:QuickQuestionsRN wrote:I'm going to be interning with Manhattan DA's office. Does anyone have any suggestions for preferences for bureaus? We have the options of investigation, appellate, special narcotics, and general trial. I originally thought investigation because I'd like to work my way into major economic crimes but had a professor point out to me that I should try to see court as much as possible to make myself a more competitive hire.
So... any general advice?
Anyone know if where you intern impacts where you wind up or if you get hired?
Your professor is right. Go to a trial bureau (general, DV, sex crimes, or vehicle, etc.). As an intern, the experience you'd get at investigations, special narcotics, appeals wouldn't be worth it. Investigations are long term, and interns are short term, so the work you'd get would be listening to tape, or collating data. Plus they wouldn't be too comfortable talking to an uncleared intern about the investigations. Not too much actual legal stuff, maybe a memo. Appeals would have legal research, but all youd be doing is writing about appeal waivers or excessive sentences.
Trial bureaus are great because you can come out of the internship confident that you can calculate 30.30 time, argue facial insufficiency, know the standards for all the Huntley/Dunaway/Wade/etc. hearings. Plus you'll likely get to go on the record for some calendar calls.
Disagree. I interned in Appeals over a summer (Queens, not Manhattan) and yes, although I wrote an appeal waiver and excessive sentence brief, I also wrote a 4th Amendment brief. Along with those, I also wrote a brief regarding sufficiency of accusatory instruments which, maybe not as sexy as other topics, requires your ability to analyze statutes and case law. You'd be surprised how many experienced ADAs don't know the standards governing the sufficiency of a complaint/information/indictment and use those terms interchangeably instead. Just like how some ADAs don't know how little it actually takes to be "ready" for 30.30 purposes.
As an intern, if you get to work on a substantive brief, even as assistance for one issue, you'll get your name in a reported decision. I got a kick out of searching my name in Westlaw and seeing results before I even graduated. To me, that's more impressive than being on the record on calendar call. I think student interns can argue cases in the Appellate Term if it gets scheduled fast enough. You'd also come out with 3-4 writing samples; its almost a 3-month lesson on effective legal writing.
I preferred Appeals because you come out of it with quantifiable work ("I wrote x briefs/motions that discussed __, ___, and/or ___.") that shows up on a resume and you can have a discussion about it, as opposed to saying "I know how to calculate 30.30."
OTOH, I also know interns that only did excessive sentence, appeal waivers, and FOIL, but those interns were the ones that had little interest in actually becoming a prosecutor. What you get out of it will depend on what you put into it. If you want to learn and do substantive work, it's definitely there for the taking, but you have to be pro-active about it.
This is very helpful. I know for at least NY County ADA that a more limited number of people are chosen for the Appeals Bureau (personally know an ADA who worked there for over 10 years who advised me of same). Because it's more substantive legal research and writing, they usually place people with stronger legal writing skills into the Appeals Bureau (this is where Law review/Journal, RA positions, and solid Legal writing grades may tend to work towards the intern favor). In the end, I would recommend asking around and choose based on what may interest you most.
Personally, I chose Appeals because I could definitely attain solid writing sample out of it, and the potential work seemed to interest me more. And coming out with "quantifiable work" seemed more appealing for me. In sum, there's not the "best" bureau. You should come out with some meaningful work experience not just merely listed on a resume, but which you could articulate to demonstrate interest for future employment purposes.
Anon who advised the intern applicant to go trial bureau here.
My reasoning is that wayyy more people are hired to be trial assistants. Most brand new appeals assistants (at least in my office) clerked at an appellate court prior to starting. More are transferred there internally. If your resume comes off as appeals-heavy you run the risk of coming off as "appeals or bust" or not a "personality fit" for the insanity of being a trial assistant.
I'm currently an appeals ADA. I've actually talked to encore about it previously.
Had no real strong desire to go there, I just wanted a job. I interned at a trial bureau during the school year and ghost-wrote a ton of motion responses, and learned everything there is to know about 30.30 time, facial sufficiency, clayton motions, motions to sever, motions to dismiss as void for vagueness. . . you get the idea. My references essentially told everyone that I was practice ready and in interviews, it showed. I could connect with the interviewers because every trial assistant has written a version of these motions. They could tell instantly that I wasn't bullshitting them and could exude confidence and competence. If I only had some weight of the evidence brief behind me or some very granular aspect of how a defect in 190.50 notice can be preserved for review, it would be pointless because, odds are, I would be the only one in that room that familiar with the issue. Even if you had an appeals assistant on the panel, they would be unfamiliar with it. Hell, my eyes are even starting to glaze over.
I guess what I'm saying is that interning at a trial bureau does not foreclose your chances of going into appeals, but interning at appeals may hurt your chances of presenting as being able to go into a trial bureau (where the greater demand is). Your ultimate goal is to get hired first, worry about the bureau you get into after. Hiring in these offices can be somewhat of a black box, but at the end of the day you still have to think about the numbers and maximizing your chances.