Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

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kcdc1
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Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Mon Feb 09, 2015 11:07 pm

Saw AJD acceptances went out today. Congrats admits!

I'm currently a 2L in the program, and I found the Q&A thread last year super-helpful, so I thought I'd pay the favor forward. I, along with fellow AJD's who might drop by, will be happy to answer any questions you might have about the program, Northwestern Law, career search, or law school more generally. I'm very happy with my choice - the opportunity to return to having a salary a year faster was a huge plus for me.

checkin2014
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby checkin2014 » Wed Feb 11, 2015 10:30 am

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Last edited by checkin2014 on Thu Sep 24, 2015 4:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:54 pm

Good luck! I don't have much info to offer about scholarships, but I would advise that whatever offer (or non-offer) you wind up with, it could change if other applicants with large offers elect to enroll elsewhere. I know a couple students in my class had luck renegotiating near the deposit deadline. Every year is different of course. Just something to keep in the back of your mind.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Wed Feb 11, 2015 11:11 pm

Checking in! Exciting times. Especially since the program can now claim a Supreme Court clerk as an alum.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Thu Feb 12, 2015 8:46 pm

kcdc1 wrote:Saw AJD acceptances went out today. Congrats admits!

I'm currently a 2L in the program, and I found the Q&A thread last year super-helpful, so I thought I'd pay the favor forward. I, along with fellow AJD's who might drop by, will be happy to answer any questions you might have about the program, Northwestern Law, career search, or law school more generally. I'm very happy with my choice - the opportunity to return to having a salary a year faster was a huge plus for me.


kcdc1,

How were you able to tackle the increased class load (i.e. an extra class)?

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DiniMae
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby DiniMae » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:30 am

Checking in!

kcdc1 wrote:Good luck! I don't have much info to offer about scholarships, but I would advise that whatever offer (or non-offer) you wind up with, it could change if other applicants with large offers elect to enroll elsewhere. I know a couple students in my class had luck renegotiating near the deposit deadline. Every year is different of course. Just something to keep in the back of your mind.


Thanks. This is good to know. Especially since the GI Bill YRP doesn't fully cover this program. WOMP WOMP. I was very excited until I saw I'd have to come out of pocket compared to other schools where it'd be free.

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DiniMae
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby DiniMae » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:41 am

kcdc1,
I have a few questions, if you don't mind:

1. There was a rumor around here that the curve may go away for 1L summer. True/False? What if they don't enroll 40+ students?
2. Now that the program is a few years in, what is OCI really like? Firms must know about it by now.
3. Do you feel underprepared as you head into 2L? Or fatigue at the end of 2L due to 3 straight semesters?
4. Is there a group/mentorship/program for all AJDs in the school?

TIA

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DiniMae
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby DiniMae » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:43 am

Is anyone going to the AJD ASD?

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Guynamedjay
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby Guynamedjay » Fri Feb 13, 2015 5:31 am

Checking in! I plan on going to the AJD ASD.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:58 am

I'd like to attend. Not sure yet as there's a massive project at work that I am leading. Is there a Facebook group?

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:22 am

BruinRegents wrote:How were you able to tackle the increased class load (i.e. an extra class)?

Everyone has a different experience managing the course load. I would say that once we hit the fall term, everyone felt reasonably comfortable with the credit load (17 credits per semester). Lots of us took on additional responsibilities such as journal, moot court, leadership roles in student organizations, etc.

The summer was a bit tougher for some. It's a 13-week semester compressed into 10 weeks, but IMO, the bigger challenge is simply acclimating to law school. Learning to read cases efficiently, settling into a good note-taking practice, and figuring out what law school is all about takes time.

Note that this is a 1L thing -- not an AJD thing. 1L stresses students out everywhere. But the AJD summer does present some additional challenges. The courses are compressed, so the reading does come in a little faster. And you'll want to set aside some time to get ready for OCI, which a 1L in the 3-year program won't have to worry about their first semester.

Personally, I found the summer pretty manageable. I liked the small classes and the regular class schedule. The school works out the summer classes so that you start every day at the same time with the same breaks. This helped me settle into a regular routine where I'd work 7 AM - 6 PM (lectures included), and that was plenty to get all my work done. Long days, but I was able to leave my reading for work hours and come home for dinner and Netflix with my wife every evening.

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:40 am

1. There was a rumor around here that the curve may go away for 1L summer. True/False? What if they don't enroll 40+ students?
I don't have any information on changes to the curve for the AJD summer. I know that we were curved, and we had less than 40 students. And I know that students have asked for the curve to be lifted on the grounds that it's unfair to curve such small classes (an argument that professors and administrators sympathize with). On the other hand, it would arguably be unfair to the traditional 1L class to make them compete at OCI with AJD's that were not subjected to the same curve. I don't have any information as to the current status of this issue.

2. Now that the program is a few years in, what is OCI really like? Firms must know about it by now.
Firms at Northwestern OCI had mostly heard of the AJD program, and my interviewers all seemed to think it was a good idea. I used my participation in the program to sell my narrative that I'm driven to return to the workforce and that I can manage time well. I never received any push-back on the program.

As for what OCI is like generally, it's basically speed dating. You grind through 10-20 meet-and-greet sessions over 2 weeks. The interviewer has your resume beforehand and you hand them a copy of your transcript as you sit down. Then you chat for 20 minutes. I'm pretty low-key and not inclined to stress, so I just tried appear likable and professional and to learn about the firms.

If you have work experience, the interviewing experience should be pretty comfortable for you. Many of the firms are trying to sell you on the firm more than you are trying to sell yourself. Grades would be the one stress point if you don't do as well as you'd like. But unless you have an option to attend a school without grades, I really think Northwestern is as good as you can get as far as making your grades look presentable. The curve here is more generous than at most T14's, and one sixth of your GPA will be Negotiation, which is uncurved.

At the end of the day, not everyone got a job at OCI, but most did. If you're patent bar eligible, I'd also highly recommend registering for the Loyola Patent Fair. The registration deadline is in early March, and Northwestern pays the $35 fee.

3. Do you feel underprepared as you head into 2L? Or fatigue at the end of 2L due to 3 straight semesters?

I definitely did not feel underprepared. I also have not had any fatigue issues. I treat law school as a job, and aside from the AJD summer, it's much less work than a real job. I also really like law school, so others might feel differently.

Is there a group/mentorship/program for all AJDs in the school?

There was a mentorship program this year, and I'm sure there will be for you as well. And there's an AJD student association too. We're all pretty friendly, and will be happy to help out or provide advice even if we're not assigned as your mentor. We'll also be looking to you to fill out our soccer team in the fall.
Last edited by kcdc1 on Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:57 am

kcdc, you had me at soccer. Haha.

What are the cons of AJD/Northwestern Law/Chicago? Thanks for doing this!

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:17 pm

BruinRegents wrote:What are the cons of AJD/Northwestern Law/Chicago? Thanks for doing this!

The program has been great for me, so I'm pretty sunshine and roses. I would by clawing my eyes out if I still had 2.5 years of school left.

For some, accelerated nature of the first summer and the way you dive headlong into OCI is a negative. I would highly recommend having your resume, suit, and interview skills in decent shape before starting the summer.

If you want super-competitive clerkships right out of school, the AJD timeline also puts you a little behind the game. The most prestigious judges do a lot of their hiring before you have enough grades to apply. Note that this problem is a non-issue if you're willing to work for a year before clerking, which many people prefer anyway.

The only other negative that comes to mind is that Chicago is colder and more expensive than, say, Durham NC.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:28 pm

kcdc1 wrote:
BruinRegents wrote:What are the cons of AJD/Northwestern Law/Chicago? Thanks for doing this!

The program has been great for me, so I'm pretty sunshine and roses. I would by clawing my eyes out if I still had 2.5 years of school left.

For some, accelerated nature of the first summer and the way you dive headlong into OCI is a negative. I would highly recommend having your resume, suit, and interview skills in decent shape before starting the summer.

If you want super-competitive clerkships right out of school, the AJD timeline also puts you a little behind the game. The most prestigious judges do a lot of their hiring before you have enough grades to apply.

The only other negative that comes to mind is that Chicago is colder and more expensive than, say, Durham NC.


Great stuff. What would the strategy for clerking be?

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Fri Feb 13, 2015 3:39 pm

First, clerking is not a necessity or even preferable for many students. The benefits of clerking seem to be prestige, skill building (you evaluate a lot of briefs and oral arguments), and networking (former clerks say that the relationship with your judge is very beneficial). That said, you sacrifice income to clerk even including the post-clerkship bonus, and I'm not sure that clerking turns into tangible benefits unless you have career goals such as academia that require the extra prestige. Don't take this summary as gospel -- I'm a 2L.

If you do want to clerk, you basically just apply early in the spring term, which is when most of the 3-year students apply anyway. Some of the most competitive spots fill 2+ years out, which means they'll have filled before you can apply in the spring. But there will be plenty of good options left.

And you can always apply for those super-competitive spots for the following year. This might even make you more competitive since you'll have more grades at the time you apply, and you'll have a year of experience under your belt by the time your clerking term would arrive. Many judges prefer applicants with post-law school experience, and many biglaw associates are happy to take a break from firm life for a year to clerk. This timing also lets you get a summer stipend and your bar expenses paid for by your firm, whereas people who clerk straight out of school have tighter budgets to work with for the summer after graduation. All told, it's a pretty solid option that is 100% compatible with the AJD timeline for every judge.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Fri Feb 13, 2015 3:56 pm

Well I was certainly edified. Thanks!

kcdc1 wrote:First, clerking is not a necessity or even preferable for many students. The benefits of clerking seem to be prestige, skill building (you evaluate a lot of briefs and oral arguments), and networking (former clerks say that the relationship with your judge is very beneficial). That said, you sacrifice income to clerk even including the post-clerkship bonus, and I'm not sure that clerking turns into tangible benefits unless you have career goals such as academia that require the extra prestige. Don't take this summary as gospel -- I'm a 2L.

If you do want to clerk, you basically just apply early in the spring term, which is when most of the 3-year students apply anyway. Some of the most competitive spots fill 2+ years out, which means they'll have filled before you can apply in the spring. But there will be plenty of good options left.

And you can always apply for those super-competitive spots for the following year. This might even make you more competitive since you'll have more grades at the time you apply, and you'll have a year of experience under your belt by the time your clerking term would arrive. Many judges prefer applicants with post-law school experience, and many biglaw associates are happy to take a break from firm life for a year to clerk. This timing also lets you get a summer stipend and your bar expenses paid for by your firm, whereas people who clerk straight out of school have tighter budgets to work with for the summer after graduation. All told, it's a pretty solid option that is 100% compatible with the AJD timeline for every judge.

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usn26
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby usn26 » Sat Feb 14, 2015 1:50 pm

Does anyone try to do PI/Gov out of the AJD class? I'm wondering how I could make that work since I don't think I could even pretend to be interested in big law for OCI (although I'd be open to an SA).

Thanks :)

[Also, I'm hoping to go to the ASW. Flights are surprisingly cheap. Anyone know if there's a stipend?]

Witsme
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby Witsme » Sat Feb 14, 2015 2:13 pm

Checking in, thanks for all of the info.

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DiniMae
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby DiniMae » Sat Feb 14, 2015 2:34 pm

usn26 wrote:Does anyone try to do PI/Gov out of the AJD class? I'm wondering how I could make that work since I don't think I could even pretend to be interested in big law for OCI (although I'd be open to an SA).

Thanks :)

[Also, I'm hoping to go to the ASW. Flights are surprisingly cheap. Anyone know if there's a stipend?]

Happy to see another Sailor!

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usn26
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby usn26 » Sat Feb 14, 2015 2:59 pm

Right back at you DiniMae!

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Sat Feb 14, 2015 3:33 pm

usn26 wrote:Does anyone try to do PI/Gov out of the AJD class? I'm wondering how I could make that work since I don't think I could even pretend to be interested in big law for OCI (although I'd be open to an SA).

Thanks :)

[Also, I'm hoping to go to the ASW. Flights are surprisingly cheap. Anyone know if there's a stipend?]

People do PI/Gov, but it's not my area of expertise. There will be good people to ask about PI/Gov at the AJD Open House or the ASW, but my sense is that the timeline for non-biglaw hiring is spread over your 2L and 3L years, so I don't imagine that the AJD program would impose any hurdles.

As for the stipend question, I vaguely recall there being a travel stipend for the AJD Open House. The admissions office could answer this pretty easily.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Sat Feb 14, 2015 5:55 pm

Is there a Facebook group for AJD?

kcdc1
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby kcdc1 » Sun Feb 15, 2015 5:12 pm

BruinRegents wrote:Is there a Facebook group for AJD?

There is, but I think it's a "hidden" group. I think admits will get invitations eventually. I don't know, I don't ever log onto Facebook.

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BruinRegents
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Re: Northwestern AJD Class of 2017

Postby BruinRegents » Sun Feb 15, 2015 6:26 pm

kcdc1 wrote:
BruinRegents wrote:Is there a Facebook group for AJD?

There is, but I think it's a "hidden" group. I think admits will get invitations eventually. I don't know, I don't ever log onto Facebook.

kcdc1,

Any advice for how to get the most out of AJD?




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