Value of being on a Law Journal

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Traynor Brah
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Traynor Brah » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:53 pm

I know this is a super naive sounding question and I mean it in the least striver way possible: Is a secondary journal at all valuable from a skill building perspective?

Good grades/school/experience so not horribly interested w/r/t OCI. Interested pretty much exclusively in lit, if that matters.

arklaw13
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby arklaw13 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:00 pm

Traynor Brah wrote:I know this is a super naive sounding question and I mean it in the least striver way possible: Is a secondary journal at all valuable from a skill building perspective?

Good grades/school/experience so not horribly interested w/r/t OCI. Interested pretty much exclusively in lit, if that matters.


No. Nether is a main journal. Bluebooking is worthless since at a firm 99% of the cites you'll be doing will be for cases, not shitty articles. I'm not any better at editing than I was before journal stuff. Maybe being EIC builds skills but fuck that.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:08 pm

I'm one of the weirdos who enjoyed LR, but I don't think doing a journal really builds significant skills you can't learn elsewhere. Like, you can learn to bluebook (but that's a skill of limited usefulness), you write a note (but you can write seminar papers and get the same experience), and you may do some editing (of academic writing, which is very different from writing for practice). If you do the board, depending on what position, you can learn about wrangling people (students and/or authors) and do some more substantive editing. It may strengthen your attention to detail somewhat.

But basically everyone I know who enjoyed LR likes research/academic writing for their own sake. You can improve your academic writing, but I don't think it really builds a lot of other skills. I think employers value it because it signals a certain base level of ability (grades/write-on) and your willingness to grind away at work that isn't your own.

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moejoe193
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby moejoe193 » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:10 pm

Does the lack of value of secondary journals still hold for HYS?

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Yukos
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Yukos » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:11 pm

I think LR is probably useful practice for very low level corp work where you're making sure italics are used consistently and that all the commas are in place.

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MyNameIsFlynn!
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby MyNameIsFlynn! » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:16 pm

moejoe193 wrote:Does the lack of value of secondary journals still hold for HYS?


Unless you're really interested in whatever niche your journal publishes, I think a secondary journal has even less significance at HYS because your resume already stands out.

However, if you're at HYS, you're probably an overachiever and will do a secondary journal anyway because everybody else did. My advice would be to pick a journal that requires only 2-3 hours of work a semester. There are a couple at H and presumably at YS too.

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xael
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby xael » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:19 pm

moejoe193 wrote:Does the lack of value of secondary journals still hold for HYS?


Yes.

abl
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby abl » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:21 pm

MyNameIsFlynn! wrote:
moejoe193 wrote:Does the lack of value of secondary journals still hold for HYS?


Unless you're really interested in whatever niche your journal publishes, I think a secondary journal has even less significance at HYS because your resume already stands out.

However, if you're at HYS, you're probably an overachiever and will do a secondary journal anyway because everybody else did. My advice would be to pick a journal that requires only 2-3 hours of work a semester. There are a couple at H and presumably at YS too.


I found the experience valuable (both primary and secondary journal work at HYS). All journals teach you to be detail-oriented, which is one of the most important skills you can develop as a lawyer. Learning how to bluebook is only part of that (although it is an important part of that). And, I found that I learned a ton by engaging substantively with the articles and authors, as well as with fellow editors regarding the articles.

I think one important difference between HYS secondary journals and secondary journals elsewhere is the quality of the articles that you get. Not all HYS secondary journals are created equal, but many of them (such as the various law & policy journals as well as a number of field-specific journals) attract really high quality scholarship. When I was submitting my first law review article, I was advised to only accept a publication from a top 75-100 flagship journal OR a HYS secondary journal (with 4-5 non-HYS secondary journals known for excellence in my field thrown in). I think that's pretty common advice, and as a consequence, HYS secondary journals get legit flagship journal-quality articles. That's not necessarily going to be the case at the secondary journals for a lot of other excellent schools. This is obviously something you'll have to evaluate on a journal-by-journal basis, but I think it's probably fair to start with the presumption that a HYS secondary is legit and the presumption that a non-HYS(CCN) secondary is not legit for these purposes.

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Rahviveh
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Rahviveh » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:45 pm

bearsfan23 wrote:
mvp99 wrote:Don't do it.

I did it because of TLS pressure. I don't think it helped at all. You might see what I suspect are a bunch of editors-in-chiefs flooding tls the next couple of months to tell you that's worth it.


Meh, I did it and it directly led to my SA


LR or secondary?

k5220
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby k5220 » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:14 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kray wrote:What about for PI? More/less helpful/necessary?

I think for most public interest, actual relevant pertinent experience is much more valuable. Of course, it depends what you mean by PI - if you mean civil rights at the DOJ, it might be one of the boxes they expect you to check (not sure, but they do seem to like high-level clerkships, which often want LR). If you mean being a PD/DA, LR is basically irrelevant. If you mean something like the ACLU, I don't really know.

DOL Honors asked my friend point blank to confirm he didn't do a journal and then asked him why. Another of my PI friends also routinely got asked in job interviews why he chose not to do journal. I got specifically asked about my journal work by a handful of interviewers, including a regional ACLU office and a couple civil rights firms.

It is a lot of work and it was pretty unenjoyable, but I'm kind of glad I could check off that box. And I'm only on a secondary journal. I think law review comes with some added prestige that may have been worth it.

I don't think it's a death sentence if you don't do it, but you should have a good reason why (like wanting to spend your time volunteering, in a clinics/internships, or RAing- just something to make you not look lazy).

jt91isles
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby jt91isles » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:39 am

Don't do it. I didn't do it and I think I am happier person because of that decision. Also, still got big-law so not sure what effect it has.

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Cobretti
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Cobretti » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:51 am

I didn't know if it would have an effect on OCI, and I honestly still don't, but I did it just to be safe and I don't regret it. Its really not that much work. Especially if you slack off on your classes during 2L (like you damn well should be doing) its not that much work overall.

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filibuster
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby filibuster » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:59 am

Journal kind of sucks. It helps check a box though, especially if you are at a school where everybody get on a journal....you might stand out to the interviewer at OCI if the other 18 candidates were on some kind of journal.

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Br3v
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Br3v » Thu Apr 23, 2015 8:24 am

filibuster wrote:Journal kind of sucks. It helps check a box though, especially if you are at a school where everybody get on a journal....you might stand out to the interviewer at OCI if the other 18 candidates were on some kind of journal.


Yeah this is the issue at UVA. I don't think I know anybody who isn't on a journal. I think it would look weird if you weren't in one, and therefore unless you have really awesome grades it just seems like an unnecessary risk.

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Other25BeforeYou
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Other25BeforeYou » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:37 am

So I did know a couple people who did the writing competition, joined journals, did OCI, lined up SAs, and then dropped out of the journals not too long afterward. They informed their firms and the firms didn't care at all. And they all got offers after their SA. So I guess that's an option?

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Ohiobumpkin
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Ohiobumpkin » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:42 am

My logic has always been that it doesn't necessary help you get a job, or push you over the edge if you are a marginal candidate for a job. Rather, doing journal (any journal) just gives employers one less reason not to select you. In other words, they won't select you because of your journal participation, but they might throw your job application in the trash quicker if you are one of the few applicants w/o journal.

However, if you decide not to do journal, might want to consider doing moot court in its place.

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Capitol_Idea
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Capitol_Idea » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:44 am

Br3v wrote:
filibuster wrote:Journal kind of sucks. It helps check a box though, especially if you are at a school where everybody get on a journal....you might stand out to the interviewer at OCI if the other 18 candidates were on some kind of journal.


Yeah this is the issue at UVA. I don't think I know anybody who isn't on a journal. I think it would look weird if you weren't in one, and therefore unless you have really awesome grades it just seems like an unnecessary risk.

Also at GULC - we have like 12 journals now so most people are on something. It's some bs talking point at OCI if you really have nothing else going on.

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FSK
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby FSK » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:57 am

ymmv wrote:
thisislife49 wrote:The write-on competition for our school's law journals are right around the corner. I was wondering what you all thought of the importance of having a law journal on your resume? Does it help gain employment in the future or is it simply just a resume builder? The "hype" around campus is that you must be on a law journal, but it doesn't appeal much to me.


No one knows for sure. But I regret doing it. I don't think it helped me in job applications -employers can already see your grades - and journal itself was the most inane waste of time of anything I've done in law school.


Nothing has ever made me so bitter as journal

03152016
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby 03152016 » Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:58 am

journals matter less if you're targeting the corp side, right?
does that apply even to flagship journal?

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bjsesq
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby bjsesq » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:03 am

I didn't do it. OCI went fine. Fuck a write on.

Edited for Brut: I was lit. Nobody asked, nobody cared.

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bjsesq
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby bjsesq » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:05 am

Ohiobumpkin wrote:My logic has always been that it doesn't necessary help you get a job, or push you over the edge if you are a marginal candidate for a job. Rather, doing journal (any journal) just gives employers one less reason not to select you. In other words, they won't select you because of your journal participation, but they might throw your job application in the trash quicker if you are one of the few applicants w/o journal.

However, if you decide not to do journal, might want to consider doing moot court in its place.

I didn't do moot court either. GET AT ME

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skers
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby skers » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:10 am

A lot of people will actually give you props for avoiding the journal trap. If you're really that worried just say something like you're doing clinic work to get practical experience rather than learning how to italicize commas.

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ggocat
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby ggocat » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:25 am

If you want a clerkship, journal is what you should be doing. If you're not doing journal, you should fill your time with something else -- moot court, clinic, internship, or a job. When I see 2L/3L resume with activities such as "XYZ club" or "Phi Alpha Delta," with no explanation for the lack of activity during the school year, the resume usually goes in the trash regardless of school and grades. I assume the person is lazy.

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Other25BeforeYou
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby Other25BeforeYou » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:28 am

skers wrote:A lot of people will actually give you props for avoiding the journal trap. If you're really that worried just say something like you're doing clinic work to get practical experience rather than learning how to italicize commas.

This. Or get a job. I didn't do a journal or moot court but I worked part time so I had that to talk about if anyone asked. And I'm a little bit convinced that I got better grades 2L and 3L because, while I didn't work any harder, I wasn't distracted by journals/moot court like most of my peers were.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Value of being on a Law Journal

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:51 am

Eh, my grades went up the more things I was doing, which included journal. I don't think journal has to affect your grades at all. I do think it's important do something besides just classes, though it doesn't have to be journal.




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