OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

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newengland
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OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby newengland » Sat Feb 18, 2012 8:12 pm

I'm attending law school in fall 13. Besides 1L grades and bidding (I know they are the most important), is there anything else that will set you apart during OCI's? (Ex. working for a law firm, anything particular useful to learn at a law firm that would be a good selling point, etc.)

Like i said, I still have more than a year so i might as well put it to good use

concurrent fork
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby concurrent fork » Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:45 pm

The only thing you can do as a 0L is to secure meaningful employment. All things being equal, the ability to talk about working in a professional environment and satisfying internal/external clients gives you an advantage over the kid who came straight from undergrad.

Also, law firm experience is not necessarily more desirable than other industries (excluding food service, retail, etc). In fact, it's probably better to try something different before law school because (1) it will make you less boring; and (2) will show that you've considered other options before deciding on law school.

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flem
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby flem » Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:36 am

concurrent fork wrote:The only thing you can do as a 0L is to secure meaningful employment. All things being equal, the ability to talk about working in a professional environment and satisfying internal/external clients gives you an advantage over the kid who came straight from undergrad.

Also, law firm experience is not necessarily more desirable than other industries (excluding food service, retail, etc). In fact, it's probably better to try something different before law school because (1) it will make you less boring; and (2) will show that you've considered other options before deciding on law school.


I don't know if this is good advice. I've got a buddy who just got an interview for a paying 1L position. 8 people got interviews. 150 applied. He's top-third with law firm experience. The rest of the 8 had firm experience. People with higher grades and no experience didn't get interviews.

I think it can only help you in the long run, it'll also let you know you're making the right decision as you'll learn the day to day operations of a law firm.

concurrent fork
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby concurrent fork » Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:22 pm

flem wrote:
concurrent fork wrote:The only thing you can do as a 0L is to secure meaningful employment. All things being equal, the ability to talk about working in a professional environment and satisfying internal/external clients gives you an advantage over the kid who came straight from undergrad.

Also, law firm experience is not necessarily more desirable than other industries (excluding food service, retail, etc). In fact, it's probably better to try something different before law school because (1) it will make you less boring; and (2) will show that you've considered other options before deciding on law school.


I don't know if this is good advice. I've got a buddy who just got an interview for a paying 1L position. 8 people got interviews. 150 applied. He's top-third with law firm experience. The rest of the 8 had firm experience. People with higher grades and no experience didn't get interviews.

I think it can only help you in the long run, it'll also let you know you're making the right decision as you'll learn the day to day operations of a law firm.

If your example is meant to show that paralegal/legal assistant experience >>>> everything else, then I disagree. Obviously, candidates with any work experience will fare better than those with "no experience." Also, assuming your friend is interviewing for a 1L SA, the things firms are looking for are not the same as what they look for at 2L OCI (many 1L SAs are "diversity" positions).

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flem
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby flem » Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:54 am

concurrent fork wrote:
flem wrote:
concurrent fork wrote:The only thing you can do as a 0L is to secure meaningful employment. All things being equal, the ability to talk about working in a professional environment and satisfying internal/external clients gives you an advantage over the kid who came straight from undergrad.

Also, law firm experience is not necessarily more desirable than other industries (excluding food service, retail, etc). In fact, it's probably better to try something different before law school because (1) it will make you less boring; and (2) will show that you've considered other options before deciding on law school.


I don't know if this is good advice. I've got a buddy who just got an interview for a paying 1L position. 8 people got interviews. 150 applied. He's top-third with law firm experience. The rest of the 8 had firm experience. People with higher grades and no experience didn't get interviews.

I think it can only help you in the long run, it'll also let you know you're making the right decision as you'll learn the day to day operations of a law firm.

If your example is meant to show that paralegal/legal assistant experience >>>> everything else, then I disagree. Obviously, candidates with any work experience will fare better than those with "no experience." Also, assuming your friend is interviewing for a 1L SA, the things firms are looking for are not the same as what they look for at 2L OCI (many 1L SAs are "diversity" positions).


Sorry, no experience should have said "no firm experience". And obviously it's not greater than every other possible option. But if you already know how to use firm software and that kind of stuff, it certainly gives you a leg up.

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as stars burn
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby as stars burn » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:05 am

OCI is pretty unpredictable. I landed a 2L summer associate position there, and never had to go in for a second interview. This is unheard of most of the time. With that being said, there is some serious competition. The PP is right in that 1Ls should mainly just focus on getting type of legal job, whether that is paying or not. Employers like to see work experience, and someone who is well-rounded--this is no different than if you were applying for a non-legal job. But you also want to cover your basics such as making sure you research the employer and just genuinely being prepared (you'd be surprised how many of my friends said they bombed an interview because they didn't do enough research). Other than that...that's really all you can think about right now. The number of interviews will ultimately be based on your grades sand class rank.

Geist13
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby Geist13 » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:25 am

To be prepared for OCI you need good grades. That is all that matters. Maybe at T6 where BIGLAW is basically taking everyone who has a reasonable GPA, then personality/experience etc. matters in terms of the getting the RIGHT firm (so long as you have decent grades you'll most likely end up with something). But outside of those schools, you'd be amazed at how little anything but GPA matters (there are exceptions of course); all you need is a good GPA. So as a 0L, the only thing you can do is put yourself in the best position to get the highest grades possible. To that end, I suggest moving to a beach town for the summer, taking a job at a liquor store or sandwich shop and party your face off all summer. You'll be rested and ready for some school.

edit: I didn't see that you were still a year out from law school. In that case, just find any old job for the next 12 months and save what money you can. If you had a few years off, then the type of job would become important. If you had a few years, then you really could develop some experience that would be valuable. However, one year just isn't long enough to move into a position where you'd earn any substantial experience. Just relax, enjoy your friends, and party hardy along the way.

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Indifferent
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby Indifferent » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:31 am

newengland wrote:I'm attending law school in fall 13. Besides 1L grades and bidding (I know they are the most important), is there anything else that will set you apart during OCI's? (Ex. working for a law firm, anything particular useful to learn at a law firm that would be a good selling point, etc.)

Like i said, I still have more than a year so i might as well put it to good use

If you're interested in transactional work, business/accounting experience is helpful. Other than that, I am tempted to say that where you work will have very little effect on your OCI experience.

However, working at a law firm might start you in the right direction w/r/t networking and give you the possibility of securing 1L employment with that firm or with other lawyers you meet working there.

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TTH
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Re: OCI tips for someone who is not in law school yet?

Postby TTH » Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:12 am

Starting Fall 2013?

It will be extraordinarily important to apply to, get accepted to, and matriculate at a law school.

One step at a time, dood.




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