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Advice Needed: Post-Bankruptcy Clerkship Hiring

Posted: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:27 pm
by Tyler_Durden
First off, thank you for reading this and taking a second to respond. I just went on my first interview for post-clerkship employment and got dinged. The anxiety is real.

TLDR: specific advice needed for post-bankruptcy clerkship hiring, except for mass mailing, which I have already completed. Should I follow up with firms and indicate that I'm also open to interviewing for litigation and/or corporate?

Here are my credentials:
- magna cum laude from a T80ish school (top 10%)
- SA with a V60ish big law firm. Did not receive an offer, and they didn't provide specific reasons. The people I kept in contact with from my SA class all were accepted by the litigation group, which I had listed as last place in my list of preferences. My writing is very good, but there was one situation where I had a miscommunication with a partner. I'm not sure if this incident caused the no-offer, or if it was because my preferred practice group (bankruptcy) was not hiring.
- Bankruptcy clerkship in a large district. It's not DE/SDNY, but it's not a flyover district either.
- I passed the bar exam in my target market and I'm awaiting admission.
- Clerkship term ending in September 2017. I started mass mailing three weeks ago, went on my first interview last week, and was recently dinged.
- One other interview lined up with a big law firm, but other than that, it's been all radio silence or "we don't have open positions right now."
- Most former clerks with my Judge ended up with big or mid-sized firms. My grades are on the high end, but the no-offer from my SA is a significant setback.

I'm concerned about facing the prospect that none of the firms from my mass mailing campaign will convert to offers. Any advice on this contingency would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

Re: Advice Needed: Post-Bankruptcy Clerkship Hiring

Posted: Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:46 pm
by clerk1251
Tyler_Durden wrote:First off, thank you for reading this and taking a second to respond. I just went on my first interview for post-clerkship employment and got dinged. The anxiety is real.

TLDR: specific advice needed for post-bankruptcy clerkship hiring, except for mass mailing, which I have already completed. Should I follow up with firms and indicate that I'm also open to interviewing for litigation and/or corporate?

Here are my credentials:
- magna cum laude from a T80ish school (top 10%)
- SA with a V60ish big law firm. Did not receive an offer, and they didn't provide specific reasons. The people I kept in contact with from my SA class all were accepted by the litigation group, which I had listed as last place in my list of preferences. My writing is very good, but there was one situation where I had a miscommunication with a partner. I'm not sure if this incident caused the no-offer, or if it was because my preferred practice group (bankruptcy) was not hiring.
- Bankruptcy clerkship in a large district. It's not DE/SDNY, but it's not a flyover district either.
- Clerkship term ending in September 2017. I started mass mailing three weeks ago, went on my first interview last week, and was recently dinged.
- One other interview lined up with a big law firm, but other than that, it's been all radio silence or "we don't have open positions right now."
- Most former clerks with my Judge ended up with big or mid-sized firms. My grades are on the high end, but the no-offer from my SA is a significant setback.

I'm concerned about facing the prospect that none of the firms from my mass mailing campaign will convert to offers. Any advice on this contingency would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
Have you passed the bar somewhere? I think from a T80 even with stellar grades, big law is unlikely for anything other than a bankruptcy practice group. That would likely only be need based, so you wouldn't be successful with mass mailing but rather will just need to wait to see if anyone has an opening. Bankruptcy isn't all that busy right now, from what I hear. I think your best bet is to work your network, and look at boutique bankruptcy practices in your local market where you are barred and where your clerkship is. Others may disagree, but I don't think you have a good chance of getting anything outside of bankruptcy (although it sounds like that is what you'd prefer to do anyway, so that's fine).

Re: Advice Needed: Post-Bankruptcy Clerkship Hiring

Posted: Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:27 pm
by Tyler_Durden
Thank you.

I updated my original post to reflect the fact that I passed the bar in my target market, and I am awaiting admission.

Where would one find listings for boutique practices?

Re: Advice Needed: Post-Bankruptcy Clerkship Hiring

Posted: Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:53 pm
by clerk1251
Tyler_Durden wrote:Thank you.

I updated my original post to reflect the fact that I passed the bar in my target market, and I am awaiting admission.

Where would one find listings for boutique practices?
Google. If you are a successful law clerk, you should be able to find some bankruptcy firms. Email the attorneys there and just be bold about asking to speak with them about possible positions they might have.

Passing the bar is pretty key, and I would be surprised if you get any job offers before you've found out if you passed our not.

Also, I hope that the district you are clerking is also the district you are targeting. Based on the way you've phrased it, it might not be. It will be a little harder for you, if you are not local. You will probably have much better luck looking in the local market where your clerkship is, but if you don't want to, just grind. It'd be helpful for you to meet the local bankruptcy attorneys in the market you are targeting, so trying to set up coffee and lunch meetings will go a long way for you. Even if they don't have openings, they might know someone who does, or might simply keep you in mind when they hear of something down the line.