Anything I should be doing now?

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Anything I should be doing now?

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 01, 2020 12:47 pm

T2 in the top ten percent of my class with law review and trying out for moot court. I interned with an Art III judge this summer. Other than using those connections, is there anything that I should be doing now to help my chances of getting a clerkship? I think applications are in the spring, right? Also, any insight on how to leverage my Fed Soc ties for a clerkship? Thanks!

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 01, 2020 12:55 pm

If you want to apply on-plan, all you need to do is think about lining up your recommenders (but no serious need to do that before about January) and research judges you might be interested in. And then just continue to get good grades. Applications will be in June of next year.

But you mentioned FedSoc--I don't mean to alarm you, but if you want to apply to competitive FedSoc judges for the term immediately following your graduation, you're already behind. Almost all of these judges will be hiring well before the plan date. Get your recommenders lined up immediately. Start asking your FedSoc connections about judges you're interested in and their timelines. And start writing cover letters and putting your applications together ASAP.

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:04 pm

OP here. Maybe this kind of makes my idea meaningless, but I don't really have any Fed Soc "connections." We have a very small chapter and no real Fed Soc alumni network. Is there a database for good Fed Soc judges to apply "early" to?

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:04 pm
OP here. Maybe this kind of makes my idea meaningless, but I don't really have any Fed Soc "connections." We have a very small chapter and no real Fed Soc alumni network. Is there a database for good Fed Soc judges to apply "early" to?
I don't know about any kind of database. I'm a lib. I just know that some of my FedSoc friends had clerkships lined up halfway through 1L. By "connections," I don't mean you have to know alums or anything. The people you really need to talk to are the board of your school's chapter and any profs who are notably FedSoc-affiliated. I'd also talk to your school's career office, especially if they have a clerkship person--they may be able to tell you which judges have historically hired early.

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:04 pm
OP here. Maybe this kind of makes my idea meaningless, but I don't really have any Fed Soc "connections." We have a very small chapter and no real Fed Soc alumni network. Is there a database for good Fed Soc judges to apply "early" to?
A lot of the FedSoc judges who hire insanely early (like 1L year) limit themselves to HYSCCN grads. There are also a few in various circuits who don't hire quite as early, but before the plan (Judge Grant and Judge Branch in the 11th circuit come to mind, since they hire from my school a lot). Your FedSoc advisor should have a good idea of which FedSoc-affiliated judges will hire from your school and are attainable for you. But from what I've heard, the FedSoc "bump" usually only applies to people who were very involved in FedSoc (as in, just being a member wasn't enough).

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shoebox

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by shoebox » Tue Sep 01, 2020 1:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 12:47 pm
T2 in the top ten percent of my class with law review and trying out for moot court. I interned with an Art III judge this summer. Other than using those connections, is there anything that I should be doing now to help my chances of getting a clerkship? I think applications are in the spring, right? Also, any insight on how to leverage my Fed Soc ties for a clerkship? Thanks!
Apply to be a research assistant for a professor (or even better, multiple professors) and do a good job so the professor will really go to bat for you as a recommender.

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bretby

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Re: Anything I should be doing now?

Post by bretby » Thu Sep 03, 2020 4:46 pm

Figure out which profs/people at your school has connections/pull with judges and find ways to get to know them, either by taking their classes or, as others have suggested, by seeing if they need an RA. Especially when you're not coming from the very top tier of schools (and often even then), having a recommender who will flag your application for the judge is crucial.

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