USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

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USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:57 pm

Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

I'll be graduating with relatively little ($20k) debt so money isn't a deciding factor.

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rpupkin

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?

lavarman84

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby lavarman84 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:02 pm

Yep. You're crazy.

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:05 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.

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Lacepiece23

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.


Then you are absolutely crazy to turn down USDOJ honors.

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:09 pm

OP here. Why is it nuts?

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rpupkin

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.

Why do you think the bolded is more likely to happen at a law firm than in a trial division of DOJ? I just can't even begin to grasp where you're coming from. (I'm not trying to insult you. I'm just trying to understand what you're possibly thinking here.)

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Lacepiece23

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Why is it nuts?


Substantive trial experience early on, probably gain way more skills then in biglaw, most likely way better hours, although there are exceptions, steady federal job, fulfilling career rather than defending corporations, less hierarchy, good chance at actually being a lawyer in short.

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rpupkin

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:23 pm

Lacepiece23 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Why is it nuts?


Substantive trial experience early on, probably gain way more skills then in biglaw, most likely way better hours, although there are exceptions, steady federal job, fulfilling career rather than defending corporations, less hierarchy, good chance at actually being a lawyer in short.

Not to mention better opportunities in big law if that's what OP ultimately wants.

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Yukos

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Yukos » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:20 pm

Not to mention the only real advantage of big law -- the salary -- seems to be irrelevant to you based on your debt load and your priorities.

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby pancakes3 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:24 pm

Bro probably has clerking credentials if he's sleepwalking his way into 3L offers and DOJ honors

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TheSpanishMain

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:28 pm

Isn't this a little premature until you actually get the DOJ offer? As of right now it's just an interview

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby lapolicia » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:32 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:Isn't this a little premature until you actually get the DOJ offer? As of right now it's just an interview


Seriously. Very few people who interview for honors actually get a offer.

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby ArtistOfManliness » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:33 pm

Yukos wrote:Not to mention the only real advantage of big law -- the salary -- seems to be irrelevant to you based on your debt load and your priorities.


Agreed. I like money too much, but if I didn't, I'd do DOJ over big law in a heartbeat.

(But also, hella premature. But I wouldn't expect to turn down a DOJ offer and get another one...)

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:48 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.

Why do you think the bolded is more likely to happen at a law firm than in a trial division of DOJ? I just can't even begin to grasp where you're coming from. (I'm not trying to insult you. I'm just trying to understand what you're possibly thinking here.)


I'm starting at Quinn. They seem to offer associates more hands-on experience than would be available elsewhere as a young associate.

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rpupkin

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.

Why do you think the bolded is more likely to happen at a law firm than in a trial division of DOJ? I just can't even begin to grasp where you're coming from. (I'm not trying to insult you. I'm just trying to understand what you're possibly thinking here.)


I'm starting at Quinn. They seem to offer associates more hands-on experience than would be available elsewhere as a young associate.

:lol:

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:57 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

What are your career goals?


I don't know. I just want to learn to be a good litigator, do interesting work, have enough money to live comfortably. I don't dream of becoming a judge or a US Attorney or a partner. This is all just a job for me.

Why do you think the bolded is more likely to happen at a law firm than in a trial division of DOJ? I just can't even begin to grasp where you're coming from. (I'm not trying to insult you. I'm just trying to understand what you're possibly thinking here.)


I'm starting at Quinn. They seem to offer associates more hands-on experience than would be available elsewhere as a young associate.

:lol:

173


Translate?

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Yukos

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Yukos » Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:26 pm

Damn we got played.

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TheSpanishMain

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby TheSpanishMain » Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:50 pm

lapolicia wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:Isn't this a little premature until you actually get the DOJ offer? As of right now it's just an interview


Seriously. Very few people who interview for honors actually get a offer.


Yeah always wondered what the interview/offer rate was for DOJ. Presumably it's not insanely bad for the applicant since the government is paying for people to travel. They wouldn't pay 20 airfares and hotel stays for 1 vacancy.

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Yukos

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Yukos » Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:55 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:
lapolicia wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:Isn't this a little premature until you actually get the DOJ offer? As of right now it's just an interview


Seriously. Very few people who interview for honors actually get a offer.


Yeah always wondered what the interview/offer rate was for DOJ. Presumably it's not insanely bad for the applicant since the government is paying for people to travel. They wouldn't pay 20 airfares and hotel stays for 1 vacancy.


How do you think we got this deficit bro?

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 28, 2016 11:17 pm

TheSpanishMain wrote:
lapolicia wrote:
TheSpanishMain wrote:Isn't this a little premature until you actually get the DOJ offer? As of right now it's just an interview


Seriously. Very few people who interview for honors actually get a offer.


Yeah always wondered what the interview/offer rate was for DOJ. Presumably it's not insanely bad for the applicant since the government is paying for people to travel. They wouldn't pay 20 airfares and hotel stays for 1 vacancy.

I think it usually ranges from something like 3.5-5 interviewees per vacancy, with more flexibility allotted to components/offices with only a handful (e.g., 1-2) of slots. This doesn't account for overlap between components. As a percentage, I think getting the interview at all is more "difficult," although presumably come interviews applicants are more qualified.

For example, career services let us know that in 2014 the Criminal Division considered 800 applicants, conducted 36 interviews, and made 8 offers.

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grand inquisitor

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby grand inquisitor » Thu Sep 29, 2016 9:37 am

above is correct iirc

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nealric

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Re: USDOJ Honors or Biglaw?

Postby nealric » Thu Sep 29, 2016 11:19 am

Anonymous User wrote:Just accepted a biglaw position at a V20 firm for after I graduate. I didn't summer with them, but they seem nice enough.

Today I got invited to interview for USDOJ honors (criminal trial and one of the specialty groups). Am I crazy to turn down the honors program?

I'll be graduating with relatively little ($20k) debt so money isn't a deciding factor.


Eh... I don't think it's necessarily an obvious choice. I did DOJ SLIP but ended up starting my career in biglaw. Overall, I enjoyed working for the DOJ, and I enjoyed the people, but there are some definite downsides to working for the government: relatively shabby offices, budget cuts, poor support staff. And not every case the DOJ works on is high profile or even remotely interesting. The upside is that the attorneys were fantastic and the atmosphere a lot more laid back than biglaw (of course, much better hours too).

Pay is a real issue. Biglaw literally pays triple the DOJ. Even if you aren't all about money, that's a tough difference to ignore. Of course, DOJ offers far better job security.



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