Need Advice on Unique Situation

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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:58 am

Need Advice on Unique Situation

Postby future_atty » Mon Mar 12, 2012 4:49 pm


I'm currently at a T20 in the midwest, and plan to seek employment in California (home state). I am a 3L, but took a leave of absence second semester of 2L. Thus I will be doing my final semester in Fall 2012. Grade-wise, I am an above average student. Had a few questions I was hoping to get some help on:

1) I plan to take a bar review course this summer, even though I will not sit for the CA bar until February 2013. Is this a good idea? Should I also seek some kind of legal employment for the summer to pad my resume? I plan to do an externship in Fall 2012.

2) If I do take the bar review this summer, I still plan to retake it in January 2013. I want to do everything possible to pass the CA bar on the first try. Will this plan help my chances passing the bar?

3) Which Bar Review course is recommended for CA bar? Kaplan, Barbri etc?

4) My preferred employment would be small/mid firms, public interest, and/or public defender. Outside of biglaw in CA, most employers will not even consider an applicant until they are bar-certified. For those familiar with the CA market, what are my chances of finding employment after passing the bar? fyi, 1L summer I was a CA county civil court judicial intern, 2L summer I interned at the Los Angeles DA's office - I have not yet had any firm experience.



Posts: 25
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:25 pm

Re: Need Advice on Unique Situation

Postby Absurd » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:59 am

I was in the exact same situation when I was in law school (leave of absence second semester 2L). I've since graduated.

Do NOT take the bar course in the summer. It will give you no advantage and will be a waste of valuable time. You'll forget everything by February, and it's completely unnecessary.

What you SHOULD be doing this summer is an internship in the field in which you want to work. Especially if you want to do anything in the public sector, it will greatly enhance your resume for future employers and provide you with valuable connections when you start looking for a job.

And you will start looking for a job in the fall. It's absolutely false that no place will hire you until after the bar. MOST government agencies do 3L fall recruiting. And your summer gig in the public sector will be an asset for you then.

I'm speaking from experience. I did a government internship during my last summer. Then during the fall -- my last semester -- I applied to government jobs. And in large part due to the added experience and the contacts I made at my internship, I landed my dream job.

Don't worry about the bar. You'll worry about it when everyone else does -- 2 months before you take it.

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