Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

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ru2486
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby ru2486 » Wed Jun 13, 2012 1:16 pm

superbloom wrote:I have a similar concern. It looks like Seton Hall seems to outperform Rutgers with regard to Federal clerkships. (c/o 2011 data says R-N had 3, up from 0 the previous year.

Speaking of clerkships, I've always been suspicious of the absurdly high number of state and local level clerks R-N and SH pump out. I'm not sure if you have any way of knowing this, but do you kow what happens to most of these clerks following their clerkships? Are there a lot of post clerks unemployed?


I PM'ed 2012DeeJay about this myself, and (I hope he doesn't mind me posting his answer here) here was his response:

What are the good kinds of clerkships that people are getting out of Rutgers that usually lead to big/mid firm employment afterwards? What are the kinds of clerkships that aren't as valuable?

I don't know if law students really can get a bad clerkship. There's a lot of talk about schools sending people to clerk at traffic court to raise their clerkship numbers. I don't know where this comes from and I highly doubt it's accuracy since traffic court doesn't have clerks. A clerkship is not just some part time job that law students get to pass time. When you clerk for a state or federal judge you are applying for a very selective process. For full-time clerkships (after graduation) you are applying to be the Judge's right-hand person, basically the judge's jr. partner. You will write the judge's opinons. Those opinions will be read directly out loud, in court, and on the record. All litigators know the judge's clerk is one of the most important people in the courtroom, next to the judge of course. So there are basically 3 levels of clerk for State court. Trial, Appellate, Supreme. There are more judges at trial level so more spaces are available. Less at appellate and even less at supreme. Each clerkship last a maximum of 1 year. That's it. After you clerk at the state level you can apply to clerk at the federal level. There are a number of way to get to the federal level. Apply after a state clerkship, apply after working for a year (at a firm or in government or public interest), apply directly to the federal judge.
Most law firms will give you a bonus and class credit for a federal clerkship. So if you clerk for one year and then go to a firm you will be paid as a 2nd year associate. If you go to a firm, and then clerk, and then go back to the firm, you will be paid as a 3rd year.
Some firms give bonuses for state level clerkships--some but not all. But most all firms give class credit for a clerkship.
Since clerkships are only 1 year the judge is going to be the best recommendation for your next job. A job working for the Public defender, District Attorney, Atty General and those types of jobs are almost a lock if you do a state or federal clerkship. The judge can just make a phone call. Firm jobs after clerking can be the ticket into a firm if you didn't get one right out of OCI but this will definitely depend on the type of firm you want, where you want to work, the judge's connections, or a firm's likelihood to bring you on. Firms are more likely to take you 1 year out from a clerkship even if you weren't otherwise employable by them during your 2L year, purely based on the research and writing you gain working for the judge. This is especially true if you want litigation. If you clerk in NJ and want to work at a firm in NJ, and especially in the jurisdiction that your judge sits you'll have a great chance of going to a firm.
That's a lot of info about clerkships and it may not all make sense and that's because there's a lot of what ifs and moving parts. You'll kind of learn a little more as you go along through school. But as a rule of thumb you can never go wrong working for a judge. The higher up the food chain the court the better the clerkship. But because there really aren't any really low courts that hire clerks it's almost impossible to have a "bad" clerkship.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Wed Jun 13, 2012 1:21 pm

ru2486 wrote:
superbloom wrote:I have a similar concern. It looks like Seton Hall seems to outperform Rutgers with regard to Federal clerkships. (c/o 2011 data says R-N had 3, up from 0 the previous year.

Speaking of clerkships, I've always been suspicious of the absurdly high number of state and local level clerks R-N and SH pump out. I'm not sure if you have any way of knowing this, but do you kow what happens to most of these clerks following their clerkships? Are there a lot of post clerks unemployed?


I PM'ed 2012DeeJay about this myself, and (I hope he doesn't mind me posting his answer here) here was his response:

What are the good kinds of clerkships that people are getting out of Rutgers that usually lead to big/mid firm employment afterwards? What are the kinds of clerkships that aren't as valuable?

I don't know if law students really can get a bad clerkship. There's a lot of talk about schools sending people to clerk at traffic court to raise their clerkship numbers. I don't know where this comes from and I highly doubt it's accuracy since traffic court doesn't have clerks. A clerkship is not just some part time job that law students get to pass time. When you clerk for a state or federal judge you are applying for a very selective process. For full-time clerkships (after graduation) you are applying to be the Judge's right-hand person, basically the judge's jr. partner. You will write the judge's opinons. Those opinions will be read directly out loud, in court, and on the record. All litigators know the judge's clerk is one of the most important people in the courtroom, next to the judge of course. So there are basically 3 levels of clerk for State court. Trial, Appellate, Supreme. There are more judges at trial level so more spaces are available. Less at appellate and even less at supreme. Each clerkship last a maximum of 1 year. That's it. After you clerk at the state level you can apply to clerk at the federal level. There are a number of way to get to the federal level. Apply after a state clerkship, apply after working for a year (at a firm or in government or public interest), apply directly to the federal judge.
Most law firms will give you a bonus and class credit for a federal clerkship. So if you clerk for one year and then go to a firm you will be paid as a 2nd year associate. If you go to a firm, and then clerk, and then go back to the firm, you will be paid as a 3rd year.
Some firms give bonuses for state level clerkships--some but not all. But most all firms give class credit for a clerkship.
Since clerkships are only 1 year the judge is going to be the best recommendation for your next job. A job working for the Public defender, District Attorney, Atty General and those types of jobs are almost a lock if you do a state or federal clerkship. The judge can just make a phone call. Firm jobs after clerking can be the ticket into a firm if you didn't get one right out of OCI but this will definitely depend on the type of firm you want, where you want to work, the judge's connections, or a firm's likelihood to bring you on. Firms are more likely to take you 1 year out from a clerkship even if you weren't otherwise employable by them during your 2L year, purely based on the research and writing you gain working for the judge. This is especially true if you want litigation. If you clerk in NJ and want to work at a firm in NJ, and especially in the jurisdiction that your judge sits you'll have a great chance of going to a firm.
That's a lot of info about clerkships and it may not all make sense and that's because there's a lot of what ifs and moving parts. You'll kind of learn a little more as you go along through school. But as a rule of thumb you can never go wrong working for a judge. The higher up the food chain the court the better the clerkship. But because there really aren't any really low courts that hire clerks it's almost impossible to have a "bad" clerkship.



Thanks for posting this. Like I said, Rutgers has always been a consideration for me. This information is the most optimistic thing I've read on here in a while (not saying it's wrong or anything), and I was unclear of what these clerkships really constituted. Good stuff to know.

Any idea of the salary range for these clerkships?

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby superbloom » Wed Jun 13, 2012 1:34 pm

R-N's website seems to suggest that the vast majority of clerkships pay about $43k or so. Also, R-N finally posted some c/o 2011 statistics. They're brutal.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby ru2486 » Wed Jun 13, 2012 1:40 pm

superbloom wrote:R-N's website seems to suggest that the vast majority of clerkships pay about $43k or so. Also, R-N finally posted some c/o 2011 statistics. They're brutal.


link to those statistics? i can't seem to find 'em.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby superbloom » Wed Jun 13, 2012 1:46 pm


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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby ru2486 » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:00 pm

superbloom wrote:http://www.law.newark.rutgers.edu/files/2011%20ABA%20Placement%20Summary.pdf

It is cleverly hidden. I wonder why?


Found it just before you posted it, thanks anyways. I don't know if it's 'hidden,' but yeah, I get what you're saying. I wish people smarter than me could break this data down into something more chewable but I'll try anyways.

For one thing, this is c/o 2011, which I think people are saying would be the worst to be hit by the recession, whereas 2012JayDee is reporting substantial employment for the c/o 2012 (now I know it's statistics vs. anecdotal from the top of the class, but still, here's to hoping there was improvement from 2011 to 2012).

If we count up unemployed and uknown, we arrive at about 35 grads, or approximately 15% of the class is simply unemployed. Adding in those pursuing graduate degrees is debatable if we're to assume that they had no choice and kept pursuing school out of lack of options. If we did that, those 9 plus the the 35 adds up to 44, or about 25% of the class. So the bottom quarter of the class is not finding employment?

I also wish there was some kind of breakdown or explanation of the "government" vs. "state" categories. The latter seems like clerkships to me, so then what's "government"?

Edit: these statistics also include both full-time and part-time, and I really wonder whether employment outcomes are differing between those 2 categories as well. Seems like part-time would be harder to land jobs if they're not doing externships and whatnot.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:03 pm

ru2486 wrote:
superbloom wrote:http://www.law.newark.rutgers.edu/files/2011%20ABA%20Placement%20Summary.pdf

It is cleverly hidden. I wonder why?


Found it just before you posted it, thanks anyways. I don't know if it's 'hidden,' but yeah, I get what you're saying. I wish people smarter than me could break this data down into something more chewable but I'll try anyways.

For one thing, this is c/o 2011, which I think people are saying would be the worst to be hit by the recession, whereas 2012JayDee is reporting substantial employment (now I know it's statistics vs. anecdotal from the top of the class, but still, here's to hoping there was improvement from 2011 to 2012).

If we count up unemployed and uknown, we arrive at about 35 grads, or approximately 15% of the class is simply unemployed. Adding in those pursuing graduate degrees is debatable if we're to assume that they had no choice and kept pursuing school out of lack of options. If we did that, those 9 plus the the 35 adds up to 44, or about 25% of the class. So the bottom quarter of the class is not finding employment?

I also wish there was some kind of breakdown or explanation of the "government" vs. "state" categories. The latter seems like clerkships to me, so then what's "government"?

Edit: these statistics also include both full-time and part-time, and I really wonder whether employment outcomes are differing between those 2 categories as well. Seems like part-time would be harder to land jobs if they're not doing externships and whatnot.


To be fair, the bottom 25% of pretty much every class from anywhere aside from Yale and Stanford is probably doing shitty.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby ru2486 » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:09 pm

emarxnj wrote:
ru2486 wrote:
superbloom wrote:http://www.law.newark.rutgers.edu/files/2011%20ABA%20Placement%20Summary.pdf

It is cleverly hidden. I wonder why?


Found it just before you posted it, thanks anyways. I don't know if it's 'hidden,' but yeah, I get what you're saying. I wish people smarter than me could break this data down into something more chewable but I'll try anyways.

For one thing, this is c/o 2011, which I think people are saying would be the worst to be hit by the recession, whereas 2012JayDee is reporting substantial employment (now I know it's statistics vs. anecdotal from the top of the class, but still, here's to hoping there was improvement from 2011 to 2012).

If we count up unemployed and uknown, we arrive at about 35 grads, or approximately 15% of the class is simply unemployed. Adding in those pursuing graduate degrees is debatable if we're to assume that they had no choice and kept pursuing school out of lack of options. If we did that, those 9 plus the the 35 adds up to 44, or about 25% of the class. So the bottom quarter of the class is not finding employment?

I also wish there was some kind of breakdown or explanation of the "government" vs. "state" categories. The latter seems like clerkships to me, so then what's "government"?

Edit: these statistics also include both full-time and part-time, and I really wonder whether employment outcomes are differing between those 2 categories as well. Seems like part-time would be harder to land jobs if they're not doing externships and whatnot.


To be fair, the bottom 25% of pretty much every class from anywhere aside from Yale and Stanford is probably doing shitty.


haha in retrospect, the hard work I did in adding up those numbers did not really contribute anything more than a completely banal observation ("oh bottom quarter of the class probably not a good place to be").

emarxnj, i've missed you. love your tar, btw.

any other thoughts on this data?

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:19 pm

ru2486 wrote:
emarxnj wrote:
ru2486 wrote:
superbloom wrote:http://www.law.newark.rutgers.edu/files/2011%20ABA%20Placement%20Summary.pdf

It is cleverly hidden. I wonder why?


Found it just before you posted it, thanks anyways. I don't know if it's 'hidden,' but yeah, I get what you're saying. I wish people smarter than me could break this data down into something more chewable but I'll try anyways.

For one thing, this is c/o 2011, which I think people are saying would be the worst to be hit by the recession, whereas 2012JayDee is reporting substantial employment (now I know it's statistics vs. anecdotal from the top of the class, but still, here's to hoping there was improvement from 2011 to 2012).

If we count up unemployed and uknown, we arrive at about 35 grads, or approximately 15% of the class is simply unemployed. Adding in those pursuing graduate degrees is debatable if we're to assume that they had no choice and kept pursuing school out of lack of options. If we did that, those 9 plus the the 35 adds up to 44, or about 25% of the class. So the bottom quarter of the class is not finding employment?

I also wish there was some kind of breakdown or explanation of the "government" vs. "state" categories. The latter seems like clerkships to me, so then what's "government"?

Edit: these statistics also include both full-time and part-time, and I really wonder whether employment outcomes are differing between those 2 categories as well. Seems like part-time would be harder to land jobs if they're not doing externships and whatnot.


To be fair, the bottom 25% of pretty much every class from anywhere aside from Yale and Stanford is probably doing shitty.


haha in retrospect, the hard work I did in adding up those numbers did not really contribute anything more than a completely banal observation ("oh bottom quarter of the class probably not a good place to be").

emarxnj, i've missed you. love your tar, btw.

any other thoughts on this data?



I wish I did. Hopefully someone pops in here and gives us a better idea of the actual implications of this data. I hear so many different things on Rutgers.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby superbloom » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:27 pm

There were 40 grads in c/o 2010 going to firms with 50+ attorneys. C/o 2011 has 24. They have 7 people counted as employed working as sole-practitioners. Rutgers might love to count these students among those employed but it's BS. The previous class had 2 people going solo. There are 25 people employed under the "JD Advantage" header. You can make the claim that a retail job is "JD Advantage" job. This isn't Northwestern. Rutgers grads aren't getting swanky "business and industry" jobs. I sure hope 2012JayDee is right in that things are better for c/o 2012.

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Easy-E
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Wed Jun 13, 2012 2:29 pm

superbloom wrote:There were 40 grads in c/o 2010 going to firms with 50+ attorneys. C/o 2011 has 24. They have 7 people counted as employed working as sole-practitioners. Rutgers might love to count these students among those employed but it's BS. The previous class had 2 people going solo. There are 25 people employed under the "JD Advantage" header. You can make the claim that a retail job is "JD Advantage" job. This isn't Northwestern. Rutgers grads aren't getting swanky "business and industry" jobs. I sure hope 2012JayDee is right in that things are better for c/o 2012.


From what I understand, it's supposed to be better than '11, but worse than '10, generally speaking. That's a bummer though.



Oh, hey Franklin.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby 2012JayDee » Wed Jun 13, 2012 4:16 pm

Class of 2011 did poorly in clerkships (actually many of the classes between 2003-2011 did poorly).
The numbers were so poor in fact, that the school completely revamped its clerkship application process for the c/o 2012.

I don't know how the process worked before that. I think it was kind of a free for all. If you wanted a clerkship then you just applied cold. From what I recall about the new program is that if you want a federal clerkship it's done as more of a group effort where all applications are screened and all get the Dean's stamp of approval and they're all sent as a big packet. Honestly, I didn't go through the process but when I talked to someone that's doing a federal clerkship he said he thought it made a big difference.

At graduation there were a number of people that hadn't heard back about their clerkships. People are still getting calls and offers, so technically, at graduation they were unemployed, but they now have clerkships.

After clerkships-everyone with an appellate, NJ supreme, or federal [that I know of] will be heading to a law firm. Obviously that's not everyone that got one. A good number of people working for the Trial courts are either going to try and do a federal the next year or go into gov't jobs. The clerks I know that are ending their clerkship (c/o 2011) and that worked at Trial courts are going to prosecutors and PD jobs. I know 5 c/o 2011 trail court clerks. All 5 have follow-on jobs. All the jobs are in gov't.

--LinkRemoved-- (I cannot verify the accuracy of these stats)
http://lawclerksalary.net/NY/New-York/s ... erk-Salary

The pay for clerkship jobs is not very high. It's a gov't job. (Keep in mind "supreme" court typically refers to the highest court in the state, except for in NY, where the supreme court is the trial level and the NY Ct of Appeals is the highest court)

2011 article about clerkships for NJ and a R-N grad:
http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories ... ships.html

Fast facts
* There are an average of 470 law clerk slots open each year for 462 judgeships throughout Superior courts in New Jersey.

* For the 2010-11 court term, there were 1,405 law clerk applicants.

* For the 2009-10 term, there were 930 applicants.

* For the 2008-09 term, there were 620 applicants.

* Law clerk's salary range: $43,437 to $57,090.


Do I know people with sub 3.0 with clerkships--yep! The basic reason is because their 2L and 3Ls years were basically spent in the legal clinics where they directly represented clients in front of a particular judge, or they clerked for the judge during the school year, or a combination of both. If I were to round of 50 random c/o2012 grads I would guess 30-35 were school-term clerks for a judge at some point during law school.

I don't know how the school classifies the gov't/state. I'm sure if you work for the Prosecutor's office, Office of the Att general it could qualify under both. Clerkships should realistically be a category separate from government or state because it's such a special circumstance. Technically, it is full time, but it's also temporary (1 or 2 years). It doesn't require bar admission, but it's only open to recent law grads. Many people that are doing clerkships after graduation may also have a law firm offer but you can't double report employment so some may choose to put clerk while others put law firm.

Seton Hall v. Rutgers
I think both schools put about the same number of people into clerkship positions. Both schools probably send the same number of people to law firms. How that looks statistically is something all together different. I can honestly name 20 people from c/o 2012 doing a clerkship. 20/200 grads is 10% and those are just the ones I can name off the top of my head. If Seton Hall puts 50 students into a clerkship that's about 16%. So you can see how the numbers would see off.

Of the 80-100 or so firms known for (OCI) hiring from R-N and Seton Hall they usually have 1-2 spots open for students from each school. At Rutgers that translates to 40-50% the class. At Seton that's only 15-20% of the class. SH is so much bigger but they don't get more employers than Rutgers. And more R-N students are focused on gov't and public interest so they self-select into clerk/gov't obs more often. Majority of R-N students do not do OCI. Of the 150 or so eligible (based on graduation/curriculum) only about 1/2 of that actually bid on OCI. 75 students interviewing with 80-100 employers is pretty good odds. Even if only 50 of those employers really intends to hire anyone from R-N and is not just there to blow smoke up the student's asses...the odds are still really good.

The total COA at Rutgers is ~ $45/year for residents and ~$55k/yr for non-residents. Many students are or become NJ residents after the first year and the average debt after 3 years is ~$80k.
The COA at SH is $70k/yr, there is no discount for residents and the average debt at graduation is closer to $200k
Seton Hall is also known for giving generous scholarships that make the cost of tuition equal to that of Rutgers tuition, but often the scholarship has a stipulation about remaining in a certain percentage of the class. I think those 2L who retain it are about 50/50 (and I'm basing this on friends of mine that went to SH Law, yes the two schools get along quite well with one another).
I say all of that to say a R-N student getting a clerkship is not nearly as much of a hardship. Staying in gov't work is also not that difficult. Whereas the average SH (or any school where tuition is almost $50k/yr) is going to find it difficult to maintain any kind of lifestyle in the public sector where salaries are equal to 1/3 of your overall debt.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby omg clay aiken ! » Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:40 pm

So theres no exception to the policy of not giving out class rank information, even when people are applying to A.III clerkships? That's fatal for most applications since rank/LR are basically all that matters

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby 2012JayDee » Wed Jun 13, 2012 11:29 pm

omg clay aiken ! wrote:So theres no exception to the policy of not giving out class rank information, even when people are applying to A.III clerkships? That's fatal for most applications since rank/LR are basically all that matters


Nope. There is no exception. Unless you graduate 1st in the class. Then you find out at graduation.
Applying for clerkships will not be affected by the fact that the school does not give out rank. You still have a GPA. There are other schools that don't rank. And everyone from Rutgers that applies will be applying without rank .The judges already know the school doesn't rank. They're not going to throw your resume in the trash because of a policy of your school.
Rank/LR is not all that matters. You GPA will matter, your class schedule will matter, your internships will matter....

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby NoobTeeth » Thu Jun 14, 2012 2:52 am

How much of a bitch is the NJ C&F application? What did it entail?

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Thu Jun 14, 2012 10:10 am

2012JayDee wrote:
Of the 80-100 or so firms known for (OCI) hiring from R-N and Seton Hall they usually have 1-2 spots open for students from each school. At Rutgers that translates to 40-50% the class. At Seton that's only 15-20% of the class. SH is so much bigger but they don't get more employers than Rutgers. And more R-N students are focused on gov't and public interest so they self-select into clerk/gov't obs more often. Majority of R-N students do not do OCI. Of the 150 or so eligible (based on graduation/curriculum) only about 1/2 of that actually bid on OCI. 75 students interviewing with 80-100 employers is pretty good odds. Even if only 50 of those employers really intends to hire anyone from R-N and is not just there to blow smoke up the student's asses...the odds are still really good.



What do you mean when you say eligible? Is that just a "what year you are" kind of thing, or is there more of requirement?

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby 2012JayDee » Fri Jun 15, 2012 6:11 pm

emarxnj wrote:
2012JayDee wrote:
Of the 80-100 or so firms known for (OCI) hiring from R-N and Seton Hall they usually have 1-2 spots open for students from each school. At Rutgers that translates to 40-50% the class. At Seton that's only 15-20% of the class. SH is so much bigger but they don't get more employers than Rutgers. And more R-N students are focused on gov't and public interest so they self-select into clerk/gov't obs more often. Majority of R-N students do not do OCI. Of the 150 or so eligible (based on graduation/curriculum) only about 1/2 of that actually bid on OCI. 75 students interviewing with 80-100 employers is pretty good odds. Even if only 50 of those employers really intends to hire anyone from R-N and is not just there to blow smoke up the student's asses...the odds are still really good.



What do you mean when you say eligible? Is that just a "what year you are" kind of thing, or is there more of requirement?



Yes. "Eligible" for OCI, meaning you are a full time student that has successfully completed the 1L curriculum prior to the fall of your 2L year. Or you are a part time student with the same qualifications, which is usually the 2LE class. There are no cutoffs or school-imposed disqualifications for applying to jobs through OCI. But many people self-select out, usually those people have no desire to go to a law firm. It's a relatively large number of people that don't even bid.

@NoobTeeth
How much of a bitch is the NJ C&F application? What did it entail?

NJ C&F isn't too bad. People think way too hard about some things. It's a very simple and pretty straightforward questionnaire about your relative past. The information only goes back until to your 18th birthday (or maybe it's 16 I can't remember). If 7 years ago you were younger than 18 you don't have to supply that information. But they ask for basic information, such as places you've lived for the last 7 years, legal jobs/internships, and of course criminal past. The criminal past is the part law students tend to over think--go figure! You would think after taking an entire class on criminal law, and having instructions people would be able to figure out what's a qualifying act requiring disclosure and what isn't. But lawyers are paid to over think issues so...

The NY C&F is more of a pain. Fortunately, you don't have to complete it until after you pass the bar. NJ requires a lot more stuff up front. It has to be completed in order to register for the exam. As such you get qualified to sit for NY faster than you get qualified to sit for NJ. It's a bit nerve wrecking when you haven't been approved to take the bar exam 45 days from the day of the test.
And you have to get MBE scores transferred, pay for driver's abstracts, fingerprints, have all kinds of certifications... and complete the C&F.
The entire bar application process is a huge pain in the ass. But it's not anything you can even think about until Feb of your graduating year. Between Feb and May the bullshit factor goes way up with the bar application materials.

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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby get it to x » Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:12 pm

Recent grad here as well who still maintains close ties to RU. Most of what 2012JayDee says is on the mark, but I'll add my observations about Career Services and clerkships.

Saying the Office of Career Services is inept, horrible, and worthless would be complimentary. They do absolutely nothing to sell Rutgers students in the New Jersey or broader New York market. They will throw the occasional NJ firm night and send out career and networking pointers that they pull from a human legal resources book, but that's the extent of their efforts. The firms that they bring in for OCI are mostly catered towards the top 15 students in the class. In fact, most of the prestigious firms that actually send a recruiter to conduct interviews (most do resume drops) are doing it because the firm has a connection to Rutgers through a faculty member or administrator, but has honestly no intention of hiring a Rutgers student. This is why the students who receive second-round interviews often become frustrated at not landing an offer from multiple firms and do not understand why. Most of the recruiting efforts are smoke and mirrors. Additionally, out of all the New York tri-state area law schools, RU is the only school I know of who does not obligate students or even have a program to meet with a career services counselor at some point during their three years. You are literally on your own in terms of looking for a job. You must become proficient at establishing connections and relationships with alumni on your own (the RU alumni network, in my experience, does not really look out for its own and there's a disconnect between them and the school for the most part) if you want to maximize your chances of getting a job.

Clerkships - 2012JayDee is correct in that the typical TLS bullshit regarding RU and SHU only placing people in traffic clerkships is a farce. The school does fairly well in placing students in state trial level clerkships primarily because there are a lot of them. The school really tries to push people into clerking in this environment because their employed at graduation stats would turn to absolute crap if they did not. These are good as a band-aid for a year to let the economy recover and try applying to some local firms later. Trial level clerks who are RU alums that I know have had mixed results in finding firm placement (at least at some of the bigger NJ firms). So again, how much a permanent solution clerking is to landing a firm job from the trial level is a mixed bag. A lot of it comes down to the temperament of the judge and whether or not they're willing to make a call. Some judges will not call firms because of a conflict of interest if those firms regularly appear before them. Others don't mind or can direct you to someone who has a relationship with a firm. Appellate and state Supreme Court clerks typically fair much better in terms of subsequent employment. Some of them have to clerk, however, because their firms requires it and most of the Supreme Court clerks are typically LR/Latin honors graduates. You do, however, see an anomaly here and there of a person at/slightly above median who is able to pull down a Supreme Court clerkship. I'd imagine those situations are likely connection-based. Appellate is more of a mixed bag. Some judges care about grades. Some don't and it's all about fit. Again, these positions have become more competitive due to the downturn and the RU edge that previously existed at this level has eroded.

Federal clerkships at RU are a long shot at least for the District of New Jersey (sadly I would write off SDNY/EDNY which are hyper-competitive/impossible). RU alums on the federal bench, from what I understand, do not show much if any favoritism towards the school. Career Services will brace you to expect nothing at all from them and, for the most part, they're right. I only know of one member of the Class of 2012 who secured a clerkship and that was largely through a connection and heavy school backing. Normally, I don't believe the connection route works for federal judges for RU. The clerkship committee, as 2012JayDee alluded to, may actually end up hurting RU applicants in the long run. Essentially, the committee bundles students in a package and provides them with a general school recommendation. If you believe you are a strong candidate, but aren't selected by the committee and apply to the same judges it may actually hurt you to have your application not included in the RU bundle. I believe this hurts RU applicants who apply as a whole.

From what I understand, the Class of 2012 did fairly alright in terms of securing employment. Yes, there are always graduates waiting to hear back from clerkships, government agencies, and firms on the eve of graduation and that is saddening considering the school dispenses, in my opinion, a very good legal education. However, there is still a large void that a chunk of each class falls into and cannot secure employment in the legal sector. More needs to be done to close that gap.

2012JayDee
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby 2012JayDee » Mon Jun 25, 2012 12:39 pm

Someone PM'd me to ask a question about classes to take and I thought I would share the answer here also:

1st year classes are set in stone, and it's the same classes for all students (Full time students)
Fall: Torts, Crim, Property, Contracts, LRW
Spring, Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, LRW, Elective

The only choice you will have for fall is whether you want an early track or late track
Early track begins classes at 8:30ish and late track begins at 9:55
Early track's latest class is 3:45 and late track will have 1 class that ends at 5:45ish and the other classes will end at 3:45

Everyone will have a chance to request early/late track just before school starts. Preference for late track is given to anyone that does not live on campus. I think most people get their requested track since there is usually an even amount of early/late requests.

The c/o 2013 was uncharacteristically large and there were some changes made, but I think they've gone back to this format
The classes are lumped together in 6 Tracks. Each track is approx 30 people. 180 1L Day students.
Tracks I, II, III are generally early track. Tracks IV, V, VI are late track.
In the fall you will have 3 classes with at least 1 other track, but you could have 3 classes with 2 other tracks. You will always have one class which is a small section which is just 1 track.
So you could have 3 classes that have 60 people and 1 class with 30, or you could have 2 classes with 90, 1 with 60 and 1 with 30. But during the fall you will never have more than 90 people (if you have a class with 90 at all), and you will have at least 1 class with 30. LRW is always 1/2 a track (so about 15).

In the spring:
The 1L class is split directly in half. Half go to one set of profs for Con and Civ Pro the other half go to another set of profs.
So there are 3 tracks (90 people) in each class. They usually try and switch up the tracks so that you're with a different group of students. So in the fall you may have classes with only tracks I, II, III and in the spring you may have classes with Track I, III, V (or II, IV, VI). LRW doesn't change. The same 15 people from fall. And there is no small section. But LRW is broken down further into LRW-TA sections. 1/2 of your LRW class will meet with 1 TA and the other half with another TA. So about 7 people per TA.

Your 1L spring elective
The electives are set at the beginning of the semester which ones are available for 1Ls. This means 1Ls will have preference over 2Ls and 3Ls for certain electives because there's only a small number of electives that 1Ls can take. There have been a few changes over the classes made available to 1L but it depends on what's available, which professors are there, class size, etc.
The electives are usually policy bases courses otherwise known as seminars, but can be more substantive. Policy based courses usually don't have a typical law school exam (issue spotting) but may have a paper due or a take home exam as the final. Some of the electives that I recall:
Animal Rights, Professional Responsibility (required by all students to graduate, but Legal Ethics may also satisfy this requirement)
Federal Tax, Administrative Law, Race and Equity, Housing Law, Alternative dispute resolution, Sexual Orientation & Law. But know that 2L and 3L can and do take these courses. So this will be your first class that's not all 1Ls

There is no "right'" class to take. It's best that you take a class that you think is interesting. A couple of these classes are taught by profs that are very popular among certain students and people really enjoy the class. There were a number of 1Ls that took Fed Tax and Admin law--personally, I think it's a bit much. Those are 4 credit classes and meet 3-4 times a week whereas the other classes may only meet twice. Also tax and admin law are very meaty courses and are quite intense. But if you're interested in that class then by all means.

My Incredibly valuable advice on upper class electives
This is tough because the classes available change very frequently. But when I was a 2L and even as a 3L many students took courses that just sounded good, were taught by professors they wanted to develop a good relationship with for networking or job purposes, or wanted the experience of that area of law. The other main reason we took certain classes was because it's "a course that's on the bar." This is something you'll hear a lot. Let me go ahead and give you the information I wish someone had given me about courses that are on the bar.

The bar exam is divided into 2 sections the MBE (multi state) and the State specific portion
The MBE is 33 question per area of law on the following areas: Torts, Criminal Law & Procedure, Contracts, Property, Constitutional Law, Evidence--Basically everything you are required to take 1L is on the MBE. The only exceptions are Criminal procedure and Evidence. Crim Pro is tested in conjunction with criminal law. So of the 33 Criminal questions about 2/3 are criminal law and 1/3 are criminal procedure. There are also 33 questions on Federal rules of evidence. That's it! All other subjects are on the state portion. So based on that I would highly recommend you take Evidence. If you don't ever take crim pro it's probably not that big of a deal because they only test about 3 things from crim pro on the bar and you can figure it out. However, crim pro is actually a decent class, it's a 4 credit course and you'll likely end up taking it just to fill up your schedule. But other than those 2 classes don't bother trying to take anything else simply because you heard it was on the bar. When people say that, what they mean is that it's one of the 22 possible areas of law tested on the NY portion of the bar. TWENTY-TWO possible subjects!!!!! You can't possibly take 22 NY based classes, so there's no reason stressing about any one course. For the purposes of the bar "Law of underwater basket weaving" is just as good as "International Arbitration". Your unlearned classmates will try and get you to believe that you MUST take certain classes. They have no idea what they're talking about. They couldn't--they're in the same boat as you. Nobody in law school has taken the bar, therefore, they have no idea what classes are necessary.

Some of the classes my classmates and I were desperately trying to get into because we thought we would be screwed if we didn't take: Will, Trust & Estates, Tax, Business Associations, Family law, NY Practice...I could go on. But the truth is, all these subjects will be taught in painful detail during the bar review course. They'll teach you everything you need to know about these subjects and a bunch more. So bottom line here: don't take any course simply because you think it's helpful for the bar. Just take whatever you want, and whatever fits into your schedule, or what will give you some good opportunities to work closely with a prof. that does work you're interested in. TRUST me--as soon as you reach 2L people will begin to flip about about classes they "need" and how they have to get a class because of the bar. Ignore this ignorance! There are also no course advisors in law school. You don't get to sit down with someone and talk about what you should take. So nobody has any clue what to take or why. The fact is that it does not really matter. This is also the time when people that attend a certain law school for "specialty rankings" think they're going to begin a course of classes in _______ Law. Believe me when I say after 1, maybe 2 classes on the same subject matter you have heard enough. You will not want to take 4 classes on international law, or intellectual property, or Law and the Arab Spring. You're going to have to average about 15 credits per semester to graduate. Take a good combination of 3 or 4 credit classes with 2 credit seminars.

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ru2486
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby ru2486 » Mon Jun 25, 2012 1:08 pm

The above is so relevant to my interests it's not even funny.

2012JayDee, thank you for your outstanding contributions here.

fu2009
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby fu2009 » Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:05 pm

Thank you so much 2012JayDee. I am a rising 2L at Rutgers-Newark and found this when googling info about rankings. It's funny that the OCI pages list requirements such as top 10% or top 1/3 of the class when R-N doesn't rank whatsoever. Since you got your job through OCI, I have a couple of questions:

How important was Law Review to being selected?
Is GPA a more important factor?
Were there any interview questions that were out of left field?

Thanks again!

funnygirl12
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby funnygirl12 » Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:24 pm

Also a 2012 RU-N grad here. I read most of what was said and agree with the RU alums... I'll add that I'm clerking at the superior court level this year so I'll speak to my experience regarding that process...

Career Services will do NOTHING for you. Every internship I had during law school (2 judicial, 2 public interest) were found ON MY OWN. The most you can hope for with CS is someone to go over your resume with. Applying for clerkships consists of you writing cover letters and attaching your resume, mailing it, and hoping for the best.

Clerkship apps are insane- I sent out close to 75 in the fall and got ONE interview- it is the one I got offered. I have a pretty solid resume and GPA, so my theory is just the volume of apps the judges must get is insane. Seton Hall might be able to get you an interview or make it more likely that you will get an interview, but GETTING the clerkship is a lot about how you click with the judge. If you have a horrible GPA or whatever, you won't get the interview-- by getting an interview, something was attractive on your resume. But getting the job is about your personality and how the judge thinks you will work together. Yes, there are other things at play- certain judges will only hire from their alma maters or certain schools or owe a favor, yadda yadda. But clerk interviewing is a little different than interviewing for other jobs, is the impression I get.

I do think the overall employment stats for 2012 might have been a little optimistic as reported by some people here... In my group of, let's say 10 closest friends in law school: 6 of us are clerking (one for app div, the rest for superior), 2 have biglaw jobs, and 2 don't have jobs. I do think RU-N 2012 DID do better in OCI getting firm jobs and we do have a good number of grads clerking for NJ Supreme Court and App Div.

I had my clerkship in the fall, and I know my policy was DO NOT ask people if they have a job and I DID NOT mention my job unless someone asked me outright. It is still very tense and stressful and RU does have a sense of community and most of the people who got jobs are not in the business of trying to rub it in other people's faces. My group of friends is doing OK but I know of A LOT of people who don't have them... it's really a toss up.

Best of luck to everyone applying/deciding. Feel free to message me any questions.

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Bigbub75
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Bigbub75 » Thu Aug 02, 2012 11:33 am

I just wanted to update this thread based this years OCI. I managed to snag a handful of interviews (3.4 + LR). But I know several of my classmates who weren't so lucky and got zero interviews. And they had decent stats as well (3.2, 3.3, journal, moot court, graduate degrees etc). It really seems to come down to grades in the end. It's either feast or famine. That's what sucks about a pure pre-select bidding process. The top 10-15 students have more interviews than they can handle, while other solid candidates get zilch. Some sort of hybrid process, where maybe the firm has 10 preselect spots and but 5 lottery spots would allow more students to interview. Or, perhaps, limiting the amount of bids students get so they only bid on the firms they really want instead of applying to all of them, which essentially everyone does. The markets rough, but I did expect my classmates to do better than they did. In the end it's all about the grades, So for incoming 1Ls keep that in mind! Study hard!

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JCFindley
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby JCFindley » Thu Aug 02, 2012 12:00 pm

Tagging for later reading.

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Easy-E
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Re: Recent Grad (Rutgers-Newark) Taking Q's

Postby Easy-E » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:04 pm

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Last edited by Easy-E on Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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