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State Trial Clerkship Questions

Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:29 pm
by Anonymous User
I have a chance to clerk for a well-respected state trial judge in a busy metro area (major city). I love the work and I've externed for Fed D.C. so I'm sure I want to clerk but I'm not sure about the career implications of taking a state trial clerkship (I've read that it's not as prestigious as Fed or S.S.C). My career goal is to work at a respected mid-law or big law (civil). Here are my stats, please let me know what I should aim for down the road and how I should improve myself:

T25, Top 30%
Worked full time during LS
National big law experience (internship in a specific field, good recs); Fed D.C. externship (glowing rec, very close to judge)
Secondary grad degree in the field I want to practice and experience in that field
Several publications and writing awards; LR and Executive Board
Other minor softs

Re: State Trial Clerkship Questions

Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:32 pm
by ArtistOfManliness
Not close to as prestigious as fed or SSC... I wouldn't do trial court. Can't get the federal district ct judge to give you an offer?

Re: State Trial Clerkship Questions

Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 8:03 pm
by mjb447
ArtistOfManliness wrote:Not close to as prestigious as fed or SSC... I wouldn't do trial court. Can't get the federal district ct judge to give you an offer?
I generally agree with this. A position with a "well-respected" state trial judge in a major city might be viewed positively by area firms, but, unless you know that the judge will be willing to go to bat for you someplace where he has personal connections, the outcomes are significantly more limited than fed. dist. or SSC.

I've also heard anecdotally that a even a great recommendation from a judicial externship often isn't that much of a boost for the reason ArtistOfManliness pointed out: if you're that good, why isn't the externship judge hiring you? (There obviously could be lots of reasons, but it could nevertheless limit the effectiveness of that judge as a recommender.)

Re: State Trial Clerkship Questions

Posted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 9:33 pm
by Anonymous User
OP here. Externship judge is in a different city and I have relocate to the new major city for family reasons, but judge said I would be welcome back in the future. Obviously, the F D.C. would be ideal, but it's not an option.