Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

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Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 05, 2017 11:15 am

I am a rising 2L at a T30. Top 20% of my class. I found out recently I did not make law review, and am on a secondary journal. I am pretty down, and can't help but feel that I am now at a huge disadvantage relative to my peers. One of my long term law school goals was to clerk, and I think part of why I am feeling pretty defeated right now is because that dream was essentially set on fire imo.

This past summer I was with a biglaw firm in a smaller market that I would like to be in post graduation. I received an offer to return next summer.
I am with a federal judge for the last bit of the summer now.

Will not being on LR wreck me in OCI? Will having big law 1L SA be able to make up for it?

Basically how make or break is LR for someone who was able to land a 1L SA? Does being on a secondary journal even matter?

You might wonder why I even care about OCI since I already have an offer. I want to be with the firm I summered with post law school, but would like to be able to have another look/another offer from another firm for securities sake.

intangibles: I think I interview well. Moot exec members said they hope i try out for the traveling team this year (this wouldn't be till after OCI are over), so i will likely have moot + secondary journal.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Dr. Nefario

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby Dr. Nefario » Wed Jul 05, 2017 11:21 am

LR is a great thing on a resume, but top 10% at most of the "top 30" schools is a pretty solid place to be. Having a secondary journal will be useful IME. Don't worry too much about LR. Plenty of folks have gotten biglaw without it.

acr

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby acr » Wed Jul 05, 2017 11:42 am

You're fine. Law Review would certainly have improved your odds, but your grades and school keep you in the running. It will probably come down to whether you've fostered strong relationships with professors who will be willing to make calls to judges on your behalf and/or write strong letters of recommendation, and luck. Apply to judges who went to your school/have hired clerks from your school, and leverage your experience with the federal judge you're currently working for. Stop being so neurotic. You landed a 1L SA, which is rare, and you have a return offer for a 2L SA. And it's only July 5th. You're basically set for the rest of law school. You should be popping champagne and casually gearing up for a nothing-to-lose-OCI instead of being "devastated" that you didn't make Law Review and that this will somehow tank your "dream."

RaceJudicata

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby RaceJudicata » Wed Jul 05, 2017 11:47 am

Bad news: Law review is a nice resume bump.

Good news: being on law review blows.

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:01 pm

acr and everyone else,

Thank you for the advice, reality check, and kick in the pants for being a neurotic gunner.

- OP

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:13 pm

Grades are generally much more important than LR. I suspect top 20% at a T30 is an underdog for an AIII clerkship, and that LR would not have been that much of a bump.

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby LurkerTurnedMember » Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:30 pm

Top 20% at a T30, assuming no special connection to the judge through a trusted professor or something, is likely a bit of a reach for AIII judges, like anon said above, and LR itself would not be a make or break thing for you. But it would be a boost. So if you're as devestated about not making it on LR, try other avenues of getting on. Does your LR offer a spot for students whose work is accepted for publishing? If so, get to writing. You could even take a class that requires a paper and expand that paper into what you submit to LR for publishing.

But you already got an offer to return to the firm so you seem at a good place with employment generally. Go into OCI with your head high and I'm sure you'll do fine.

lolwat

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby lolwat » Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:07 pm

You're in an amazing position as far as your biglaw/firm/OCI life goes.

As for clerkships, you really need to be higher than top 20% of your class. That's priority. You might need to pull your grades up for the rest of your top-law-schools.com and then try to get a clerkship for like one or two years out of law school if your goal is still to clerk by then. (I went from <33% my first semester to top 20% by the end of 1L, which blew my chances at anything, to top 10% by end of 2L, to top 5% by the end of 3L, by which time I landed some clerkship interviews and ultimately a clerkship offer after I graduated.)

LR or secondary journal really doesn't matter much in comparison.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:17 pm

WRT not getting law review, it's really a proxy for being a good writer, so if you can demonstrate good writing through other means, not being on LR probably won't sink you (and there are judges it won't sink you with regardless). You could look into publishing a note somewhere (whether that's your school's LR or elsewhere - my school's LR only published notes from student school on LR so your home LR may not be an option), or see if you can get a moot court prize for your brief or something along those lines.

I agree with everyone else who says that Aiii will be a stretch. You may have a better shot starting at a state clerkship (ideally SSC) and then applying for federal after - a lot of DCt judges like to see experience and having a clerkship on your resume/showing you will have learned how to write for a court can help a lot (even more if you can clerk for someone who can promote you to other judges, but the experience itself is helpful).

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cron1834

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Re: Advice regarding Journals, Biglaw, and the future.

Postby cron1834 » Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:25 pm

You already have an offer from a biglaw firm in your secondary market. Isn't that like 99% of the battle? The rest is window dressing. You could literally skip OCI and two years of bullshit cite-checking. Those are like the two worst aspects of law school. Your classmates should be jealous of you.



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