Pre-law Employment

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giantsfan564789
Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:16 pm

Pre-law Employment

Postby giantsfan564789 » Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:25 pm

For anyone who is knowledgeable on the subject, I'd like to know what your opinion is on employment before law school. I personally am currently working as a government employee for NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation and I wouldn't exactly call it something impressive to have on one's resume. When some people hear about my job, they respond with laughter, so I know that many people among the broader population would basically consider this the opposite of a prestigious job as far as white-collar work goes. I am only doing this for the rest of the year, and will be attending law school starting in September. Do you believe that having a job like this could hurt me when I search for a post-law school job, or will firms see it as irrelevant?

I would like to add that I do have an interest in healthcare law, so even though my job may not be the highest paying or the most prestigious, I thought the experience could possibly even help me in getting a job in healthcare law. What are your thoughts on this?

Prior to having this job, I was interning at a small law firm for about 6 months, so the only jobs I will have had between graduation from undergrad and the start of law school will be my 6 months at the small law firm, and another 9 months of the job I currently have. Basically, from what you've heard, would you say my chances of obtaining a very high level and high paying job would be helped, hindered, or unaffected in any way by the work experience I'm going to have from the time between undergrad graduation and the start of law school. Honest answers/opinions please.

Thanks a lot!!!
Last edited by giantsfan564789 on Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PepperJack
Posts: 646
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2013 1:23 pm

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby PepperJack » Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:32 pm

Seems like it would help. I don't think firms would care all that much, and will care more about your school, grades and personality. I don't know about private healthcare practice. It seems that might be removed from most of the "big law" world. I don't know if you have a strong interest in healthcare law, or if you're making yourself have one to feel better about your present job. I would not worry much about the prestige, but those attending law school are more likely to be hyper about prestige so I understand it may hurt. I would laugh at the unpaid internship post college, personally, because it suggests you are not valued and that you do not have to make money to support your livelihood.

The truth is that interviews are predominately just about being over the cut off at a particular school. Any job you have that isn't clerking, researching or being a summer associate is going to only be as valuable as the likelihood a partner asks you about it, and that you'll have compelling things to say. If it's the second thing from the top, assuming you have a 1L summer position, then this, then the internship, it's likely to come up.

giantsfan564789
Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:16 pm

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby giantsfan564789 » Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:41 pm

PepperJack wrote:Seems like it would help. I don't think firms would care all that much, and will care more about your school, grades and personality. I don't know about private healthcare practice. It seems that might be removed from most of the "big law" world. I don't know if you have a strong interest in healthcare law, or if you're making yourself have one to feel better about your present job. I would not worry much about the prestige, but those attending law school are more likely to be hyper about prestige so I understand it may hurt. I would laugh at the unpaid internship post college, personally, because it suggests you are not valued and that you do not have to make money to support your livelihood.

The truth is that interviews are predominately just about being over the cut off at a particular school. Any job you have that isn't clerking, researching or being a summer associate is going to only be as valuable as the likelihood a partner asks you about it, and that you'll have compelling things to say. If it's the second thing from the top, assuming you have a 1L summer position, then this, then the internship, it's likely to come up.


Thanks for the response Pepperjack. So if it did come up in an interview, and I had a response like I was interested in healthcare law so thought I could gain some knowledge (something along those lines but more thought out), you would say that having something like this on the resume isn't going to hurt my chances?

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hichvichwoh
Posts: 442
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:21 am

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby hichvichwoh » Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:06 am

giantsfan564789 wrote:For anyone who is knowledgeable on the subject, I'd like to know what your opinion is on employment before law school. I personally am currently working as a government employee for NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation and I wouldn't exactly call it something impressive to have on one's resume. When some people hear about my job, they respond with laughter, so I know that many people among the broader population would basically consider this the opposite of a prestigious job as far as white-collar work goes. I am only doing this for the rest of the year, and will be attending law school starting in September. Do you believe that having a job like this could hurt me when I search for a post-law school job, or will firms see it as irrelevant?

I would like to add that I do have an interest in healthcare law, so even though my job may not be the highest paying or the most prestigious, I thought the experience could possibly even help me in getting a job in healthcare law. What are your thoughts on this?

Prior to having this job, I was interning at a small law firm for about 6 months, so the only jobs I will have had between graduation from undergrad and the start of law school will be my 6 months at the small law firm, and another 9 months of the job I currently have. Basically, from what you've heard, would you say my chances of obtaining a very high level and high paying job would be helped, hindered, or unaffected in any way by the work experience I'm going to have from the time between undergrad graduation and the start of law school. Honest answers/opinions please.

Thanks a lot!!!


Does this actually happen? If so, fuck those people.

giantsfan564789
Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:16 pm

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby giantsfan564789 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:07 am

Could I get some more opinions please? I'd like to get as many as possible. Thanks a lot

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JuTMSY4
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2009 3:40 pm

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby JuTMSY4 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:18 am

I worked in a legally unrelated job before law school (for about 5 years) and I have to admit it can only help. I'm not talking part time money makers, but a job like yours that's career oriented. It shows you can function in a office and handle full-time work. My career was also tangentially related to the law, so it was a good talking point for 1L summer interviews.

As an aside, any job like this will work. One of my classmates, who's not a biglaw associate, was a former TV producer/camera man. It was steady and acceptable employment. Jobs can range from irrelevant to related, but the bottom line is it shows competency.

As an aside, do be prepared for the "why law school" or "be a lawyer" question - and its fair because of your previous career. There are other benefits, but those are debatable. Bottom line is, this job will not hurt you.

raindrops
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2012 5:57 pm

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby raindrops » Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:23 am

I worked for a state Department of Health Services for almost two years before going to law school. While my friends and my family had no idea what I did, law firms really appreciated the work experience especially since I was applying for only healthcare law position. The job won't hurt you and it gives you a great foundation for the guaranteed question "why healthcare law?" at interviews.

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kalvano
Posts: 11725
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:24 am

Re: Pre-law Employment

Postby kalvano » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:12 pm

I worked as far from law-related work as possible for five years before school. It won't hurt at all, and will likely help.




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