Yointer wrote: Patrick Bateman wrote:
Yointer wrote:Any TLS-ers doing summer internships with Navy or Air Force JAG?
I did the AF internship as a 2L in 2007. Not sure if that will help or not.
Patrick, having interned with the AF prior to commissioning, did you find that the internship gave you some insight into what life as a JAG is like? Would you recommend the internship as a worthwhile summer job?
The JAG internship is something I can recommend without any hesitation.
Way back when I was a 2L, I was sitting with two Chicago BigLaw offers and then Army & AF JAG internship offers. I come from a family with zero military history so I really had no idea what JAG really entailed. I ended up deciding that I could do my 10 weeks with the internship and get a good idea of what I would be in for. Worst case, I would hate it, hopefully be able to pull a law firm out of 3L OCI (this is long before the economy imploded), and at least know I gave it the ol college try. Best case I would find I loved it and have a more full appreciation for what working at a Base Legal Office would involve.
I was at Wright-Patterson AFB in Dayton, Ohio. It was a fantastic experience. I was fortunate to have two fellow interns that were active duty FLEPers (Captains from a different AFSC who had the AF paying their way through law school) so I was able to learn a ton about the military in a really low threat way. I was really impressed that the JAGs never tried to "sell" me on joining the AF. It was their enthusaim and love for the job that sold me on putting in my active duty application.
I was assigned in Civil Law and did a ton of interesting work. My boss, the head of Civil, was very pro-active in making sure I got as much out of the experience as possible. He made to vary the work I was getting and was always available when I invetitably hit a road block. I also spent some time with military justice which was a lot of fun. I sat in on two special courts-martial and one summary. I spent a day touring and learning about our C-5 Galaxys.
Having recently graduated from JASOC, I have to say that the internship seems to be the unofficial way to greatly increasee your chances for being picked up for a direct commission. The vast majority of the direct commissions in my class had the internship under their belt. I've also heard from more senior JAGs that it is something the accessions boards look favorably upon. That said, it is not a make or break thing. We did have direct commissions that did not have the internship.
I would not trade my 2L summer for anything. I made 1/3rd of what my BigLaw friends did but I also had more fun and learned more than I thought possible. You will not get wined and dined the way summer associate programs do (or did) but I feel the internship is far more athentic. The legal reviews I wrote went to commanders. The legal assistance meetings I sat in on helped actual members and their dependants.
If you get the opportunity, do not pass it up, especially if you are on the fence about entering an active duty commitment.