objctnyrhnr wrote: andythefir wrote:
objctnyrhnr wrote:Along these lines, assuming no biglaw and if you’re going the ada route, how much does a year of fedclerk in target district bump your application? Does having fedclerked shoot you to the front of the pack of ada applicants...or is it not that big a deal from the ada path relative to say the biglaw path?
I've worked in 2 rural DAs offices, and where I've worked, being a fed clerk would make you very different from the rest of the office. Both offices were populated with khakis-and-cowboy-boots types who got ok grades at ok schools (not bad grades at bad schools, but ok grades from state schools). Getting good grades at a good school (top 10 at ND) actually hurt me because 1 the office assumed (correctly) I wouldn't be there very long, 2 there was some jealousy/resentment among the people who were used to being the smartest people there, and 3 they assumed (incorrectly) that I would be no good at trial because relatively few people from my school were trial attorneys. I'd imagine a fed clerk would see all of those things ratcheted up.
I have no idea how representative my experience is. It might be that more urban settings are less backwards, but the people I know who work in big city's prosecutors offices were true believers from day 1.
So my question really pertained to AUSA applications.
If not with clerkships, how would usaos really even distinguish one superior court Ada from another for hiring purposes?
I think a federal clerkship is damn near a necessity in many offices. For ADAs, however, I think it is less a requirement because I think the big factor driving their applications is relevant trial or investigation experience.
I think all things being equal (meaning two ADAs with similar trial experience), the ADA with a federal clerkship in the target district will have a competitive advantage because that ADA will understand how the actual federal court in that district operates. That ADA will also have experience with federal motion practice. In fact, I think that ADA will likely have an advantage over many biglaw associates because that ADA will be seen as just as smart as biglaw associates, with understanding of federal court practice, and more practical trial experience.
The caveat is that ultimate hiring decisions are often driven by the idiosyncrasies of the U.S. Attorney. If the U.S. Attorney only values biglaw experience, then you're SOL. So there's that.