"Typical" career paths of top students (~30%)

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"Typical" career paths of top students (~30%)

Postby alpinespring » Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:24 am

How would you describe the "typical" career path of top students?

I get the sense that top students, in general, get amazing summer associate jobs and after graduation, mostly split into 1) BigLaw or 2) Clerkships (who eventually join BigLaw later).

I recently read that in the past, working at the Dept. of Justice was one of the most popular/prestigious career paths for top law school students.

Is working at the DoJ (or in FBI, DA, and other government branches) still a popular career path for top students?

Are there any other popular career trajectories frequently pursued by top students?


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Re: "Typical" career paths of top students (~30%)

Postby cavalier1138 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 7:29 am

Ok, a few things:

1. "Top" students can mean a lot of things. Top 30% isn't really the group getting federal clerkships or DOJ honors from any school.

2. The opportunities for someone in the top 30% at Chicago are different than the opportunities for someone in the top 30% at Cooley. So this question is meaningless without at least naming a general tier of schools you're talking about.

3. There is no "typical" career path for a student based on grades. Different students have different interests. There isn't a set path of "prestige" jobs set aside for those special students who were above the median. The only exception might be that the really top students of the class will be competing for top federal clerkships, because regardless of career goals, a clerkship is almost always useful.

4. This is a bad question for a 0L to ask. You should be asking, "What are the typical career options for students from [School] with median grades?"


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Re: "Typical" career paths of top students (~30%)

Postby Nebby » Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:05 am

Median students in the T6 can do the things you're describing.

Top 30% at a T2 are lucky if they get a job period.

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