Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

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Corwin
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby Corwin » Tue May 17, 2011 10:55 pm

This is something that is worth spending time on. Be careful though, there is a fine line between being aggressive and being annoying. Aggressive can get you the job and being annoying can shut you out forever. There's no hard and fast rule on where aggressive stops and annoying starts, so just be conscious of this while you try to network.

I'll give you some tactics I have used successfully in the past. Are you in the same geographic area? You can send an email saying you are in town for some unrelated event (perhaps a conference or something), you are a big fan and you are attending X law school in the fall, and you'd love to drop by to chat about law school and the org. I've done pretty much this exact thing in the past and it has worked out quite well (I have a lower GPA but a much higher success rate with internship and job offers than my peers). It's important to mention that you just happened to be in town; you don't want to come across as desperate if you made a 45 minute drive or something to meet with her (but you should be willing to do this). When you actually get the meeting set up, it is important to appear simultaneously composed and passionate about law school and the issues being tackled by the org. You want to seem very professional and excited at the same time. At the end ask for her business card so you can follow up with her later. Do not forget to ask her for her business card! Send her a few emails throughout the semester, perhaps commenting on some big win or success her org has had. I'm sure you follow the orgs progress; sending her an email about some success is just verbalizing what you are already thinking in your head. Then when it comes to apply for an internship, apply through whatever system they use. Note, this is important. Don't try to apply through her because she will just email you back and tell you to apply through their official system. Apply through whatever system they use. Then send her an email with your cover letter and resume attached and let her know you applied through their system. Include an application or job reference number if applicable. From there, as long if you've done a good job communicating your passion for the law and her org, you should get the internship. Good luck!

(Disclaimer: my experience here is in getting internships and jobs in engineering. I think the skills I've learned are generally applicable, but there is certainly etiquette and traditions in the legal field I do not know about yet.)

amonynous_ivdinidual
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby amonynous_ivdinidual » Tue May 17, 2011 11:04 pm

it is a great idea to reach out. but mentioning the words "job," "internship," or "interview" in the email would be gauche. also, bear in mind that any sort of career networking once school starts, and prior to approx. Thanksgiving, is not only frowned upon but also not permitted. So tread lightly. But it can only help you to find a friend on the outside.

viking138
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby viking138 » Wed May 18, 2011 8:52 am

amonynous_ivdinidual wrote:it is a great idea to reach out. but mentioning the words "job," "internship," or "interview" in the email would be gauche. also, bear in mind that any sort of career networking once school starts, and prior to approx. Thanksgiving, is not only frowned upon but also not permitted. So tread lightly. But it can only help you to find a friend on the outside.


Career networking, aka asking for a job, is not permitted. However, reaching out to people is always permitted. It's the asking for a job part that's not.

Gideon Strumpet
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby Gideon Strumpet » Wed May 18, 2011 11:01 am

ktg808 wrote:Interesting, I didn't know we could reach out to lawyers/firms/organizations prior to the December 1 deadline.

NALP calls what it publishes "standards and principles" for a reason; they're not rules, and they do not bind anyone. They don't even bind schools and employers, which are the actual members of the organization. Many schools ignore them. Most public sector, nonprofit, and small firm employers have never heard of them.

If you're unlucky enough to attend a school that "adheres" to these guidelines, and that warns you with vague innuendos that something bad will happen to you if you "violate" them, then you will find, if you wait until December 1, that a suspiciously large number of 1L summer positions have already been filled, before you were even "allowed" to apply.

If you want to talk to people, talk to people. Keep it on that level; just talk to people who have jobs that you have a genuine interest in, and listen to them if they're kind enough to share their time with you. If a person happens to have gone to your school, that's fine. But if you're lucky enough to know lawyers among your family or friends, or friends of family, or family of friends, or people you met in a former job . . . you get the idea. Just talk to people who do what you want to do and pay attention to their advice. Don't ask if they hire 1Ls. DO NOT ask toolish things like, "So, how do you get from a midwest T20 to DC?"

The worst that will happen if you email a resume early is a firm will trash it or hold it until December 1. This may happen with V100 firms, which more or less follow NALP. But they do this because it gives them a great excuse to ignore 1Ls, whom they have zero interest in talking to anyway, not because they give a crap about the NALP rules.

If you want to apply for government, nonprofit, or small firm jobs, look these organizations up and check their websites for any stated deadlines on summer hiring. Most deadlines fall somewhere in September - November, and many organizations have the same deadline for all summer jobs. Some will set the deadline at December 1 for 1Ls. Most will not. Many won't even have a deadline, because they don't have a formal timeline.

If you want to apply to an organization that has an early deadline, make sure you meet the deadline when you apply.
Last edited by Gideon Strumpet on Wed May 18, 2011 11:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

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sundance95
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby sundance95 » Wed May 18, 2011 11:06 am

Gideon Strumpet wrote:NALP calls what it publishes "standards and principles" for a reason; they're not rules, and they do not bind anyone. They don't even bind schools and employers, which are the actual members of the organization. Many schools ignore them. Most public sector, nonprofit, and small firm employers have never heard of them.

If you're unlucky enough to attend a school that "adheres" to these guidelines, and that warns you with vague innuendos that something bad will happen to you if you "violate" them, then you will find, if you wait until December 1, that a suspiciously large number of 1L summer positions have already been filled, before you were even "allowed" to apply.

Solid first post. Thanks for confirming my sneaking suspicion re these 'rules'.

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ktg808
Posts: 292
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Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby ktg808 » Wed May 18, 2011 2:01 pm

Gideon Strumpet wrote:
ktg808 wrote:Interesting, I didn't know we could reach out to lawyers/firms/organizations prior to the December 1 deadline.

NALP calls what it publishes "standards and principles" for a reason; they're not rules, and they do not bind anyone. They don't even bind schools and employers, which are the actual members of the organization. Many schools ignore them. Most public sector, nonprofit, and small firm employers have never heard of them.

If you're unlucky enough to attend a school that "adheres" to these guidelines, and that warns you with vague innuendos that something bad will happen to you if you "violate" them, then you will find, if you wait until December 1, that a suspiciously large number of 1L summer positions have already been filled, before you were even "allowed" to apply.

If you want to talk to people, talk to people. Keep it on that level; just talk to people who have jobs that you have a genuine interest in, and listen to them if they're kind enough to share their time with you. If a person happens to have gone to your school, that's fine. But if you're lucky enough to know lawyers among your family or friends, or friends of family, or family of friends, or people you met in a former job . . . you get the idea. Just talk to people who do what you want to do and pay attention to their advice. Don't ask if they hire 1Ls. DO NOT ask toolish things like, "So, how do you get from a midwest T20 to DC?"

The worst that will happen if you email a resume early is a firm will trash it or hold it until December 1. This may happen with V100 firms, which more or less follow NALP. But they do this because it gives them a great excuse to ignore 1Ls, whom they have zero interest in talking to anyway, not because they give a crap about the NALP rules.

If you want to apply for government, nonprofit, or small firm jobs, look these organizations up and check their websites for any stated deadlines on summer hiring. Most deadlines fall somewhere in September - November, and many organizations have the same deadline for all summer jobs. Some will set the deadline at December 1 for 1Ls. Most will not. Many won't even have a deadline, because they don't have a formal timeline.

If you want to apply to an organization that has an early deadline, make sure you meet the deadline when you apply.



Thanks!

kaiser
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby kaiser » Wed May 18, 2011 2:11 pm

Approach this more in the mindset of making friends than gunning for jobs. That is why I recommend only calling up younger alumni. They will be much more receptive to this. I was able to joke around with them about our favorite (and least favorite) professors, etc, since their memories of school will be very fresh. That isn't to say I didn't chat with some older partners, but the conversation would be a bit more conservative and professional. But still, it was never about asking for jobs or even inquiring about them. It was more in the sense of a child talking to his elder trying to learn about the path he took and the experiences along the way.

Don't ask about jobs in general. Sure, you can ask if they had a particular approach to OCI, how they attempted to break into a particular region, etc. But all of that conversation will always be about them, which is how you want to keep it. It conveys your interest simply by you asking the question, but deflects any notion of you pining for a job.

lakerfanimal
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 1:22 am

Re: Gunner 0L - Please talk me down...

Postby lakerfanimal » Wed May 18, 2011 2:28 pm

To echo what others have said- If it's an "I'm interested in any advice you have to offer and in the line of work you do" type email, that's great. But if it's a "Help me get a job because we're bffs now since I go to the law school you graduated from", don't do it. Basically, what you're doing isn't being a "gunner" but it could potentially be. Just be genuine man/girl :)




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