Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

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Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 09, 2015 2:53 pm

Grad here, currently in a major east coast market (v50), graduated top ~35% from Penn/UVA, pretty major market (but not overly prestigious) D.Ct. Clerkship coming in August, was going to apply very broadly to all CoA. Former school's CSO told me it would be a mistake and that although I may be able to obtain one in a "very undesirable location" due to experience and D.Ct., it is "virtually impossible" for me to obtain a CoA. I know a lot of the response will be "you have nothing to lose in applying" but I'm confused by this CSO statement. Is there ulterior motives at work? Just being realistic?

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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 09, 2015 3:59 pm

I mean, I never got a COA clerkship so take this as you will, but my impression is that doing a DCt clerkship is a significant boost to getting a COA. After I got my DCt clerkship I had a number of people ask me if I was going to apply for COAs, with the implication that they thought I'd be competitive, and my stats are worse than yours (higher ranking but very ordinary school). I'm not saying they were necessarily right, but I find your CSO's comment weird, too. I have no idea what's up with that - maybe they don't want alums taking the positions from current students and screwing up their employment stats? But I find it weird.

(I also don't think that for professional purposes there are really any undesirable COAs, but that may just be coming out of my school, where we don't commonly get them.)

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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:29 pm

Yeah, a few things:

- The above poster is right; there's no such thing as an "undesireable" COA. A COA could be located in Baghdad, or at the bottom of the ocean, and people would still fight to get the clerkship.

- I bet the CSO was just trying to manage your expectations. Law students are generally overconfident about their chances at getting prestigious things like a COA clerkship. As a CSO, a big part of your job is telling people when they're lying to themselves. It's probably a kind of protocol to be brutally pessimistic about this stuff.

- I doubt the CSO's advice has anything to do with employment stats; people who can get COA have no trouble getting other jobs at graduation. Probably no ulterior motive.

- Go ahead and apply. But try to detach from the application process as much as you can. You're looking at pretty long odds (though not impossibly long). Stay zen about all this, and you'll spare yourself a lot of anxiety and disappointment if you turn up empty-handed.

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seizmaar
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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby seizmaar » Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:34 pm

my feeling is that CSOs are a lot more loyal to current students than to grads. i don't think you have an unrealistic chance at all. i would hesitate to tell anyone who got a district court clerkship that a CoA is impossible.

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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:34 pm

OP here. Appreciated. I'm all for realism and have very low expectations - just had the time and thought it would really just be an incredibly lucky boon to piggyback on top of a D.Ct. and definitely don't have a problem with "this probably isn't going to happen" - just felt more of a "you shouldn't do this" vibe and wanted some feedback. Thanks.

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Shaggier1
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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Shaggier1 » Fri Jan 09, 2015 6:38 pm

Generally, don't listen to CSO.

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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 10, 2015 11:49 am

Anecdotal evidence, but I was ~30% at CCN, nabbed a district court clerkship in the southeast, and then got a CoA in the same city/circuit. I'm positive that the D. Ct. experience and my trial judge's good relationship with my appellate judge were huge factors in landing the job. So go for it. Your CSO's pessimism is perplexing.

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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 10, 2015 7:04 pm

That sounds like something RP would say. Ignore that advice and apply anyway. Once you start getting interviews, the tune will change.

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sundance95
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Re: Any chance? (posting after discouraging advice)

Postby sundance95 » Sun Jan 11, 2015 8:29 pm

If UVA, know that the person you spoke with is notoriously pessimistic.




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