transferring and clerkships

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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saladfiend
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:19 pm

transferring and clerkships

Postby saladfiend » Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:21 pm

Suppose a student ends up transferring from ~T12-16 to ~T1-3.

How does this affect one's ability to obtain clerkships in the fall of 3L year? Supposing the student gets good grades at his/her new school, I imagine the only stumbling block would be finding faculty recommenders at the new school (and interviewing of course). Does anyone know how successful transfer students are at finding clerkships? Do judges frown upon hiring transfer students? Would these students have been better off staying at their old schools?

zomginternets
Posts: 547
Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:59 pm

Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby zomginternets » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:43 pm

G.T.L. Rev's clerkship thread in Legal Employment addresses the issue of transfers and clerkships.

Basically, even though you could kill your 2nd year and end up in the top 10% of your class, it doesn't mean they'll just presume you would have done equally as well if you had taken your 1L year there. I imagine this applies a lot more so for T3-T14 transfers more than T16-HYS transfers though.

Edit: not to mention not having the LR credential, which I think is pretty important for the more prestigious clerkships.

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thexfactor
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Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby thexfactor » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:47 pm

is there really that big of a difference between first year and 2nd/3rd year classes?
A lot of schools still maintain a pretty strict curve on 3nd and 3rd year classes.

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Helmholtz
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Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby Helmholtz » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:49 pm

thexfactor wrote:is there really that big of a difference between first year and 2nd/3rd year classes?
A lot of schools still maintain a pretty strict curve on 3nd and 3rd year classes.


My school averages around 3.2 for 1L's and 3.45 for 2Ls + 3Ls.

saladfiend
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:19 pm

Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby saladfiend » Tue Apr 26, 2011 12:29 pm

Helmholtz: U Chicago has a totally different gradings scale.

At my law school, the mean GPA is the same 1L and 2L/3L years. While C+s are not mandatory during 2L and 3L years, there are fewer grades in the A range during 2L and 3L years. Of course there are small classes that are off-curve during 2L and 3L year. Our small writing class 1L year is on-curve.

zomginternets
Posts: 547
Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:59 pm

Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby zomginternets » Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:20 pm

my school's 1L median is 2.9, while the 2L/3L median is 3.33.

I thought it was the norm for 2L/3L years to have higher medians...

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: transferring and clerkships

Postby XxSpyKEx » Tue Apr 26, 2011 11:36 pm

saladfiend wrote:Suppose a student ends up transferring from ~T12-16 to ~T1-3.

How does this affect one's ability to obtain clerkships in the fall of 3L year? Supposing the student gets good grades at his/her new school, I imagine the only stumbling block would be finding faculty recommenders at the new school (and interviewing of course).


This is less of a big deal than people on TLS make it out to be. You will find recommenders at your new school. And you don't lose anything by transferring. For example, if you got the book award in LRW and had a decent relationship with your LRW prof, he/she will be happy to write you a letter of recommendation, despite your decision to transfer. I still talk to my LRW prof over email every now and then.

saladfiend wrote:Does anyone know how successful transfer students are at finding clerkships?



Yes.

saladfiend wrote:Do judges frown upon hiring transfer students?


No.

saladfiend wrote:Would these students have been better off staying at their old schools?


In my case, no because there was no chance in hell I would have gotten the clerkship I did from my old school.

zomginternets wrote: Edit: not to mention not having the LR credential, which I think is pretty important for the more prestigious clerkships.


This is actually kind of a big thing and your odds of getting LR at the new school are pretty low. You just have to recognize this factor going in and weigh your options carefully. A t12—HYS transfer might not make sense for this reason (because it may end up limiting your ability to get a clerkship, or at the very least, it will limit your ability to get as prestigious of a clerkship as you might have gotten had you stayed at your old school). However, in the case of Yale (not sure about SLS), I think the risk of not getting LR is lower (don’t quote me on this, but I think something like a 1/3 of transfers get onto LR and you get something like 3 chances to get on, AND getting onto some journal is guaranteed). Also YLS is a clerkship powerhouse (what, does something like a 1/3 of their class get article III clerkships?). Personally, I would have a difficult time justifying not transferring to YLS with all that in mind.

thexfactor wrote:is there really that big of a difference between first year and 2nd/3rd year classes?


Grade inflation is the only big difference between 1st year and 2nd/3rd year classes... Oh those seminars with their 3.9 GPA medians tend to have that impact.

zomginternets wrote:my school's 1L median is 2.9, while the 2L/3L median is 3.33.

I thought it was the norm for 2L/3L years to have higher medians...


At most schools, it is.




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