GULC Transfer Students at OCI

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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thebobs1987
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GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby thebobs1987 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:06 pm

I saw in an earlier post someone say that tier 3 and tier 4 transfers to GULC don't get any respect from firms at OCI. What about transfers from T50 schools? Just curious what experiences people have had. Thanks

boxie
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby boxie » Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:47 pm

Success comes from a mix of school rank and class rank (plus interview skills, pure luck, etc). Number 1 at an unranked school is still a long shot, but so is the top 20% guy at a T1.

A rough way to judge is how competitive you would be for the few coveted OCI spots that your current school does have. If your class rank barely transfers you into GULC, you're unlikely to have much success in OCI regardless of your school rank unless you are the world's best interviewer. If you have a competitive class rank and come from a decent school, the benefit of transferring to GULC is that instead of having 3 or 4 big law screeners like you likely would at your old school, you have ~20 chances to convert into a callback.

Personally, I was top 5% at a mid T2, and OCI went well. Of the 18 screeners I did, only one told me they really weren't looking for transfers and to come back as a 3L when I had 'real' grades. It didn't seem to phase the rest. 6 callbacks, one V-10 offer, one V-5 rejection, and I withdrew from the rest and accepted the offer.

laxstar1
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby laxstar1 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:12 pm

Transferred from top 50 and was in top 5%, working at V20. Boxie is right that it's a mixed bag as far as transfers go, and how you do here is typically a function of (a) where you transferring from (b) your class rank there, (c) your interviewing skills, and (d) (and I can't overstate how important this is) your bidding strategy . My friends that came from T3 and T4 schools did, on the whole, have a rough time (but lots of them did end up with employment, just not through OCI). However, many of my friends are also very pleased with their summer employment and are overall happy with their decision to transfer.

Two points that I would make about successful OCI: 1) Bid NYC. Seriously. I didn't get a single callback in DC, while getting callbacks at over 50% of the NYC firms (all of which were V20). DC is an incredibly challenging market to break into as a transfer because (a) it's really small, (b) because it has a fairly unique regulatory focus, people who want to do that gun for DC. One caveat is that I don't have any DC ties, so maybe the result would be different if someone did (I know one transfer who is working at A&P, Hogan Lovells, Covington tier).

The second point I would make is be VERY careful with your bidding. We have an average GPA list for what firms normally recruit at. If you have a 3.7 from a T4, don't bid S&C...and don't be fooled thinking that "They want a 3.7 and I have a 3.7!) Sure, you should go ahead and throw a few reaches in, but definitiely have some backups. A lot of the transfers who didn't do well bid really poorly, I think.

dsconn2
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby dsconn2 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:39 pm

Ranked 4/210 at my prior T4. At OCI, two offers for DC V10 firms, among others. Summered at Skadden DE. Going to Cravath after graduating. My sense is that Covington DC and A&P DC would be hard as a transfer but not so much other firms.

eastcoast_iub
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby eastcoast_iub » Tue Jan 28, 2014 4:22 pm

M transfer here, from my experience prior school doesn't matter that much. The kid who had the most success in our class went to the shittiest school out of everyone, but had a very high GPA. To some extent, recruiters tend to focus on the absolute number of your GPA - they have an imperfect ability to differentiate in this regard. That said, I know plenty of people outside of top 10% at their previous schools who landed good gigs, and the fact that you were accepted to a T14 speaks volumes and is more important than your prior school and class rank.

#1 factor in OCI success, BY FAR, is interviewing skills - I have a strong resume, but woefully underperformed at OCI b/c my interviewing skills weren't that great (I bagged something through mass-mail). #2 most important factor is bidding, definitely bid NYC heavily, although I do know several transfers who got DC so it is not impossible. Also mass-mail any firms near your home market.

One caveat about bidding though, you can pick up a lot of extra interviews if you keep your eye open for cancellations, so not getting a ton of interviews through the lottery is not a death-knell.

FrostedMiniWheats
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby FrostedMiniWheats » Sat Feb 08, 2014 9:21 pm

Top 10% at T20. Applying EA to GULC and it's actually a top choice. CLS/NYU/HLS are the only other schools i'd consider attending. Is it really that difficult for transfers to break into the D.C. market? D.C. is the major reason why GULC is so high on my list.

I love D.C. and although i could probably get D.C. from my current school, the GULC network and brand is just so much stronger in the region.

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stillwater
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby stillwater » Sat Feb 08, 2014 9:43 pm

FrostedMiniWheats wrote:Top 10% at T20. Applying EA to GULC and it's actually a top choice. CLS/NYU/HLS are the only other schools i'd consider attending. Is it really that difficult for transfers to break into the D.C. market? D.C. is the major reason why GULC is so high on my list.

I love D.C. and although i could probably get D.C. from my current school, the GULC network and brand is just so much stronger in the region.


youd go to GULC over HLS? seems poorly conceived.

FrostedMiniWheats
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby FrostedMiniWheats » Sat Feb 08, 2014 9:45 pm

stillwater wrote:
FrostedMiniWheats wrote:Top 10% at T20. Applying EA to GULC and it's actually a top choice. CLS/NYU/HLS are the only other schools i'd consider attending. Is it really that difficult for transfers to break into the D.C. market? D.C. is the major reason why GULC is so high on my list.

I love D.C. and although i could probably get D.C. from my current school, the GULC network and brand is just so much stronger in the region.


youd go to GULC over HLS? seems poorly conceived.

lol probably not HLS.

shock259
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby shock259 » Sun Feb 09, 2014 12:22 pm

FrostedMiniWheats wrote:Top 10% at T20. Applying EA to GULC and it's actually a top choice. CLS/NYU/HLS are the only other schools i'd consider attending. Is it really that difficult for transfers to break into the D.C. market? D.C. is the major reason why GULC is so high on my list.

I love D.C. and although i could probably get D.C. from my current school, the GULC network and brand is just so much stronger in the region.


DC is really hard to break into. Period. GULC does ok in DC, but a lot of GULC grads end up going elsewhere. There's just not enough DC lawyer jobs, and the GULC kids are having to compete with the HLS/CLS/etc kids, who also want to work in DC.

I have a hard time believing that the GULC "brand" is stronger in DC than HLS/CLS.

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Nebby
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby Nebby » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:38 pm

laxstar1 wrote:The second point I would make is be VERY careful with your bidding. We have an average GPA list for what firms normally recruit at. If you have a 3.7 from a T4, don't bid S&C...and don't be fooled thinking that "They want a 3.7 and I have a 3.7!) Sure, you should go ahead and throw a few reaches in, but definitiely have some backups. A lot of the transfers who didn't do well bid really poorly, I think.


Where is this "average GPA list"? I just applied to GULC EA (currently at T2 w/ 4.0 GPA, which means I'm at least tied for top class rank) and I'm doing OCI research right now. I'm confident I can hold that 4.0, so in June I'm going to throw feeders at NYU, CLS, and HLS (the latter for the lulz), but right now GULC is my safety.

Any GPA info you have would be great laxstar! Thanks. You're really helpful on this forum.

Jchance
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby Jchance » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:45 pm

FrostedMiniWheats wrote:Top 10% at T20. Applying EA to GULC and it's actually a top choice. CLS/NYU/HLS are the only other schools i'd consider attending. Is it really that difficult for transfers to break into the D.C. market? D.C. is the major reason why GULC is so high on my list.

I love D.C. and although i could probably get D.C. from my current school, the GULC network and brand is just so much stronger in the region.


From experience, if you end up transferring to GULC, try to tell the story that you love D.C. so much that you transferred into the region to network and stay to practice later. A lot of firms bought this story when I transfered into a secondary market, given that I had no ties and this market was decently difficult to break into.

laxstar1
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby laxstar1 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 2:15 pm

CounselorNebby wrote:
laxstar1 wrote:The second point I would make is be VERY careful with your bidding. We have an average GPA list for what firms normally recruit at. If you have a 3.7 from a T4, don't bid S&C...and don't be fooled thinking that "They want a 3.7 and I have a 3.7!) Sure, you should go ahead and throw a few reaches in, but definitiely have some backups. A lot of the transfers who didn't do well bid really poorly, I think.


Where is this "average GPA list"? I just applied to GULC EA (currently at T2 w/ 4.0 GPA, which means I'm at least tied for top class rank) and I'm doing OCI research right now. I'm confident I can hold that 4.0, so in June I'm going to throw feeders at NYU, CLS, and HLS (the latter for the lulz), but right now GULC is my safety.

Any GPA info you have would be great laxstar! Thanks. You're really helpful on this forum.



No problem, happy to help. The private practice GPA list is on GULC website, but you won't have access to it until you're admitted, unfortunately. It's pretty helpful for crafting an effective bid list when the time comes. GPA requirements vary from firm to firm; some firms are really grade sensitive, some are more flexible, and so on. With over 100 firms coming to OCI, it's really hard for me to make a broad characterization that X GPA will get you biglaw, and Y GPA won't. It's even more difficult to characterize transfer GPAs because of the differences in school rank and curves.

I don't mean for this to be dismissive or condescending, but your #1 at your school...I guess I'm not sure what you want me to tell you. There's absolutely nothing more that you can do to help yourself at OCI as far as grades are concerned other than to maintain the 4.0. Just do everything you can to replicate your stellar fall performance, and your GPA won't hinder your ability to secure callbacks and offers.

I'll give you my perspective on the importance of grades for OCI. Grades-- like the school you come from-- are an easy way to screen applicants. If you meet or exceed a firm's target GPA, you've passed the screening test. If you are below a firm's target GPA, you either won't get a CB or will really have to blow the screening interviewer away. But merely passing the screening test is often not sufficient to secure an offer. I can't emphasize enough how important being a proficient interviewer is. I have friends/acquaintances who woefully underperformed at OCI because they had poor interviewing skills, and I have friends who outperformed their numbers because they had really strong interviewing skills. Having good grades is essential to securing a biglaw job through OCI, but you also should be sure to brush up on interview skills. Do yourself a huge favor and set up a mock interview with your career services. A lot of schools facilitate mock interviews with actual attorneys at law firms...sign up for this program.

I'm sorry if I'm not directly answering your question...please feel free to followup so I may be able to give you a more direct answer. I guess to try and summarize, not a single firm is going to say #1 is, per se, not good enough for us. They may, however, say "Candidate X has a 4.0 from T2, and Candidate Y has a 3.8 from NU...let's go with Candidate Y." The best way you can make a firm say "let's go with Candidate X" is to 1) transfer, so the firm says "Candidate X has a 4.0 from a T2, but is getting a degree from GULC, or Duke, or Harvard, or whatever; and 2) be a good interviewer, so the firm says "Candidate X blah blah blah, Candidate Y blah blah blah, Candidate Y has slightly better credentials, but we LOVED Candidate X, so let's go with him/her."

Like I said, maybe the question of "do you have GPA info" is too broad...Maybe I can be more helpful if there's something more specific you're looking for. P.S. Congrats on the 4.0, that's an outstanding accomplishment!

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BVest
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby BVest » Sun Feb 23, 2014 2:41 pm

In terms of firms and GPAs, you're going to be compared to folks at your old school. Obviously they're not going to say "Nebby had a 4.0 at American/Mason, so it stands to reason that he would have had a 4.0 had he been at GULC." Your current school should have a similar list for what firms have taken there, or in your case (since there is no higher GPA possible, assuming you keep your grades up) a list of firms who have hired 2Ls from the school in the past few years, whether through OCI or otherwise.

So see about getting such a list from the school before it's known that you're transferring; if possible get one with gpa cutoffs (even if you don't need it now, you may after spring grades). Tell OCS you want to research firms prior to the summer when OCI deadlines start sneaking up on people and you think that the list of firms that have hired your school's students as 2L SAs in the past few years is a good place to start. This list would help you in bidding at GULC OCI even more than GULC's gpa cutoff list will.

laxstar1
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby laxstar1 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 2:50 pm

BVest wrote:In terms of firms and GPAs, you're going to be compared to folks at your old school. Obviously they're not going to say "Nebby had a 4.0 at American/Mason, so it stands to reason that he would have had a 4.0 had he been at GULC." Your current school should have a similar list for what firms have taken there, or in your case (since there is no higher GPA possible, assuming you keep your grades up) a list of firms who have hired 2Ls from the school in the past few years, whether through OCI or otherwise.

So see about getting such a list from the school before it's known that you're transferring; if possible get one with gpa cutoffs (even if you don't need it now, you may after spring grades). Tell OCS you want to research firms prior to the summer when OCI deadlines start sneaking up on people and you think that the list of firms that have hired your school's students as 2L SAs in the past few years is a good place to start. This list would help you in bidding at GULC OCI even more than GULC's gpa cutoff list will.


+1

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Nebby
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby Nebby » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:42 pm

My question was pretty broad on purpose. I just wanted some more information on what your experience and thoughts were on the OCI process for a transfer. I was particularly interested in how to begin planning the bidding process, because I don't want to bid firms that have a high likelihood of not interviewing due to my prior T2 status--even with a 4.0.

I hope to secure a 2L SA in DC, but per your previous advice I am going to bid heavily in NYC as well. Obviously this is all early, as I won't hear back from GULC for a month, but I with my study schedule I have free-time and like to spend it planning for the next "step" in the "law school game."

Bvest, thanks for the tip on possibly finding an SA list from my current school. Though I have a suspicion that my current T2 has probably never sent an SA to a V100. Going to peruse my CSO website at the moment.

Edit: Found some info. 7 V50 firms participated in last August's OCIs--whether or not there were offers I don't know. I've book-marked their Vault profile for future reference for transfer OCI.

laxstar1
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Re: GULC Transfer Students at OCI

Postby laxstar1 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 4:06 pm

CounselorNebby wrote:My question was pretty broad on purpose. I just wanted some more information on what your experience and thoughts were on the OCI process for a transfer. I was particularly interested in how to begin planning the bidding process, because I don't want to bid firms that have a high likelihood of not interviewing due to my prior T2 status--even with a 4.0.

I hope to secure a 2L SA in DC, but per your previous advice I am going to bid heavily in NYC as well. Obviously this is all early, as I won't hear back from GULC for a month, but I with my study schedule I have free-time and like to spend it planning for the next "step" in the "law school game."

Bvest, thanks for the tip on possibly finding an SA list from my current school. Though I have a suspicion that my current T2 has probably never sent an SA to a V100. Going to peruse my CSO website at the moment.


Okay, I can appreciate all that, let me followup then. I had a good experience at OCI, I only had one firm basically imply that they didn't want to hire a transfer at this time, but they qualified that by saying to keep in touch for 3L OCI. I had a bunch of firms (some of which I received a callback/offer from, some where I got a ding email the next day) say they viewed transfers as students who showed ambition and initiative, so I do think transferring up has benefits outside of the degree for the purposes of OCI.

As far as the mechanics of OCI go, GULC OCI, like most T14, utilizes a lottery system. At my old school (and I suspect yours), everyone basically bids on every firm, the firms pre-screen candidates, and then select who they want to interview at OCI. Here, you rank 50 firms from #1-#50. The lower the ranking (the closer to #1), the better your chances are to get a screening interview. Firms are not permitted to review your resume for the purposes of deciding whether to interview you or not. This does put you in a weird situation where some firms may interview you with absolutely no interest in hiring you, but it's virtually impossible to tell which firms those are. More importantly, with your GPA, I can't imagine you'll find yourself in this situation with too many firms.

Your bid list should be set strategically so as to maximize the number of interviews. A firm like DPW, which interviews over 100 students, can be lower on your list then a firm that only interviews 21 students and has 100 students bidding for it. GULC has statistics of available interview slots and number of students bidding on them, but this is also, unfortunately, not available until after your admitted.

In the interim, what I would suggest is that you go on Vault, Chambers and Partners, and Chambers and Associates (particularly the "Inside View" section) and start researching firms. Look at their practice area strengths, what their attorney's think about their culture, their size, etc. From this, you should be able to have a ballpark idea of the firms your interested in. Once you get admitted and have access to the admitted student stuff, then you can formulate your bid list strategically. But really, 3/4 of the battle is knowing what firms your interested in.

Also, I really don't mean to scare you away from DC firms. I have transfer friends at Hogan, Gibson, etc. If you really want to be in DC, by all means you should bid on a bunch of DC firms. I just meant that you shouldn't exclusively bid on DC firms, and that a lot of transfers did really well bidding NYC.




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