What are my chances?

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What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 14, 2016 10:53 am

Hey all! So, im a 2L at a mid-T14 & I'm getting a decent amount of pressure (forceful encouragement?) from a professor to consider clerking. I've honestly never thought about it much, b/c family reasons mean I essentially can't leave the northeast.

Grades are ~10th percentile, w/LR. Do I have any shot at a 1st or 2nd circuit clerkship? Have one pretty good LOR, but no unique WE or softs.

Thanks for any advice... My clerkship office kinda sucks

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 14, 2016 2:16 pm

10th percentile is probably an outside shot for CA2, but I would say that you are well under 50%.

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mjb447

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby mjb447 » Wed Sep 14, 2016 2:59 pm

Probably not a great shot for CoA: you're in one of the most competitive regions in the country (and you'd need better than one pretty-good LOR). You might do better with a little work experience and applying to judges outside metro areas and to non-OSCAR judges as they can be *slightly* less inundated with the very best candidates.

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby hdivschool » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:13 pm

You've got a decent enough shot that it's worth applying.

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby mjb447 » Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:41 pm

hdivschool wrote:You've got a decent enough shot that it's worth applying.

I wanted to be realistic about the shot that you have, OP, but this is probably also true. You may already have a resume and writing sample put together anyway (or will want to for other reasons in the near future), and it's not much additional work to make any necessary revisions and ask some profs for recommendations. For the time and effort you'll invest, the potential payoff would be well worth it.

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 15, 2016 7:59 am

OP here. Thanks for your opinions, I appreciate it a lot. I know CA2 is very competitive. As a follow up question, my resume is full of extensive partisan political work (Gubernatorial, Presidential campaigns, SuperPAC work, state party work). My good LOR is from a professor well known to judges as meeting my political viewpoint.

Should I even bother applying to judges who are known to be on the opposite side of the aisle, or is my resume likely to go in the trash there? Does this kind of work provide any benefit for judges who do agree with me politically?

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 15, 2016 8:38 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks for your opinions, I appreciate it a lot. I know CA2 is very competitive. As a follow up question, my resume is full of extensive partisan political work (Gubernatorial, Presidential campaigns, SuperPAC work, state party work). My good LOR is from a professor well known to judges as meeting my political viewpoint.

Should I even bother applying to judges who are known to be on the opposite side of the aisle, or is my resume likely to go in the trash there? Does this kind of work provide any benefit for judges who do agree with me politically?

It depends on the judge, so you should just apply and see what happens. Some judges won't care because they assume that you won't let your political viewpoint influence your job of figuring out what the law is. Others intentionally seek to hire some clerks who disagree with them.

Same goes for benefits. It depends on the judge. Some won't care, but others will like it. For my judge, it definitely helps if you agree politically.

Also, any reason that it seems like you're not considering district courts?

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks for your opinions, I appreciate it a lot. I know CA2 is very competitive. As a follow up question, my resume is full of extensive partisan political work (Gubernatorial, Presidential campaigns, SuperPAC work, state party work). My good LOR is from a professor well known to judges as meeting my political viewpoint.

Should I even bother applying to judges who are known to be on the opposite side of the aisle, or is my resume likely to go in the trash there? Does this kind of work provide any benefit for judges who do agree with me politically?

It depends on the judge, so you should just apply and see what happens. Some judges won't care because they assume that you won't let your political viewpoint influence your job of figuring out what the law is. Others intentionally seek to hire some clerks who disagree with them.

Same goes for benefits. It depends on the judge. Some won't care, but others will like it. For my judge, it definitely helps if you agree politically.

Also, any reason that it seems like you're not considering district courts?


I am definitely willing to consider DCs, if they're within the northeast. But truth be told, I'm fortunate enough to have a firm job I'm pretty happy with & it would be more difficult to justify a year not on the 180 salary scale for a DC. Like I alluded to earlier, have some pretty serious family considerations in play (wife in Med school).

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby mjb447 » Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:31 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. Thanks for your opinions, I appreciate it a lot. I know CA2 is very competitive. As a follow up question, my resume is full of extensive partisan political work (Gubernatorial, Presidential campaigns, SuperPAC work, state party work). My good LOR is from a professor well known to judges as meeting my political viewpoint.

Should I even bother applying to judges who are known to be on the opposite side of the aisle, or is my resume likely to go in the trash there? Does this kind of work provide any benefit for judges who do agree with me politically?

Given that you're already pretty restricted geographically, don't further limit yourself in other ways. There's a chance your resume will go in the trash if a judge doesn't agree with you politically, but it's not a certainty.

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:36 am

Anonymous User wrote:I am definitely willing to consider DCs, if they're within the northeast. But truth be told, I'm fortunate enough to have a firm job I'm pretty happy with & it would be more difficult to justify a year not on the 180 salary scale for a DC. Like I alluded to earlier, have some pretty serious family considerations in play (wife in Med school).

Ok, not suggesting you should apply to district courts outside of the Northeast, just want to make sure you're aware that the skills you learn at each level are different and honestly district court experience seems more helpful in biglaw lit practice than circuit court, even though circuits are generally more "prestigious." So for example if you're in NYC biglaw, it would be odd to apply for 1st Circuit but not SDNY or EDNY.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: What are my chances?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Sep 15, 2016 10:27 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I am definitely willing to consider DCs, if they're within the northeast. But truth be told, I'm fortunate enough to have a firm job I'm pretty happy with & it would be more difficult to justify a year not on the 180 salary scale for a DC. Like I alluded to earlier, have some pretty serious family considerations in play (wife in Med school).

Ok, not suggesting you should apply to district courts outside of the Northeast, just want to make sure you're aware that the skills you learn at each level are different and honestly district court experience seems more helpful in biglaw lit practice than circuit court, even though circuits are generally more "prestigious." So for example if you're in NYC biglaw, it would be odd to apply for 1st Circuit but not SDNY or EDNY.

Agree with this. Also, trial-level clerkships tend to involve more human interaction and more variety than appellate ones, which can make a difference to your enjoyment, depending on your personality.



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