DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023 Forum

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DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Apr 13, 2022 9:24 pm

Does anyone know when DOJ typically updates their website with the new participating components?

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Apr 20, 2022 9:37 pm

I really want to know this too!!

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Apr 21, 2022 9:47 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Apr 13, 2022 9:24 pm
Does anyone know when DOJ typically updates their website with the new participating components?
Believe me friends, the process is long enough as is. Enjoy this time because starting in September you’re going to have at least three months of anxiety filled days

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Wed May 25, 2022 10:47 am

I think around the time the application launches is when you will learn about participating components and number of slots, so late July.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Fri May 27, 2022 10:50 am

I’ve been stalking the components participating website, and while the application page itself hasn’t been updated (still has 2021 deadline), the components participating page has been updated.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Fri May 27, 2022 4:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fri May 27, 2022 10:50 am
I’ve been stalking the components participating website, and while the application page itself hasn’t been updated (still has 2021 deadline), the components participating page has been updated.
Thanks! That was really recent.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Jun 02, 2022 6:43 pm

Can anyone give any insight about the defensive sections of Civ and their competitiveness? Thinking of ranking Torts and Fed Programs high.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Fri Jun 03, 2022 9:29 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Thu Jun 02, 2022 6:43 pm
Can anyone give any insight about the defensive sections of Civ and their competitiveness? Thinking of ranking Torts and Fed Programs high.
Any litigating branch (so all of CIV) is going to be competitive. Of the most competitive, it’s Appellate followed closely by Fed Programs. I would probably put every other branch on the same level with the caveat that the sections with the least spots are naturally going to be more competitive.

I’m entering a CIV branch through HP in the fall. You rank them in order of preference, but what I realized is I only received interviews for the branches specifically mentioned in my “cover letter” with a short “why” I want to work in this branch. To ensure I had space to do this, I only applied to two divisions instead of the standard three. My best advice is take a reallly hard look at your resume and narrow down what you’re competitive for so you can spend more energy (and space) writing about those branches in your “cover letter.”

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by 774361 » Fri Jun 03, 2022 11:03 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Thu Jun 02, 2022 6:43 pm
Can anyone give any insight about the defensive sections of Civ and their competitiveness? Thinking of ranking Torts and Fed Programs high.
I applied last year and am starting with fed pro this fall. pm me if you have questions

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Jun 18, 2022 12:48 pm

Hoping this is (sorta) the right thread for this. I just graduated with honors from HYSC and over the next couple years, I'm doing federal district and appellate clerkships, with judges/circuits that let clerks do a pretty decent amount of crim work and who have DOJ connections. I've never worked at the DOJ itself, but both of my summer jobs involved litigation work that incorporated some crim/white collar stuff. And, while my grades in law school were pretty good, my grades in crim pro classes were about average.

I'm not going to be thinking about applying for another year, but if I do, how competitive am I as an applicant? I'm primarily interested in crim/national security type work.

Sorry if this is a super obvious question - I thought about the Honors program a bit in law school, but because of clerkships I haven't sat down and deliberately tried to assess my odds.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Jun 18, 2022 5:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Sat Jun 18, 2022 12:48 pm
Hoping this is (sorta) the right thread for this. I just graduated with honors from HYSC and over the next couple years, I'm doing federal district and appellate clerkships, with judges/circuits that let clerks do a pretty decent amount of crim work and who have DOJ connections. I've never worked at the DOJ itself, but both of my summer jobs involved litigation work that incorporated some crim/white collar stuff. And, while my grades in law school were pretty good, my grades in crim pro classes were about average.

I'm not going to be thinking about applying for another year, but if I do, how competitive am I as an applicant? I'm primarily interested in crim/national security type work.

Sorry if this is a super obvious question - I thought about the Honors program a bit in law school, but because of clerkships I haven't sat down and deliberately tried to assess my odds.
You'll be very competitive. It's a little bit of a crapshoot just because there are so few positions, but that's a very strong application. I don't think they'll quite drill down on your crim pro grades (and none of those schools give conventional grades, anyway). Just take the required essays really seriously.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Jun 19, 2022 1:05 pm

DOJ looks for strong interest in public service and DOJ itself. I actually don't think you're a particularly strong applicant for the honors program with zero DOJ experience. Maybe if you have a decent or great amount of other public service experience.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Jun 19, 2022 5:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Sun Jun 19, 2022 1:05 pm
DOJ looks for strong interest in public service and DOJ itself. I actually don't think you're a particularly strong applicant for the honors program with zero DOJ experience. Maybe if you have a decent or great amount of other public service experience.
I think this depends a bit. If you’re looking at something like civil rights, I agree that you want to have some kind of relevant public interest experience. Civil programs, which involves work closer to general civil lit, I think less so. And I think if they got a decent amount of criminal experience while summering and build on this while clerking, crim could be interested.

Again, this is where your essays can make a difference. Certainly it’s easier to show your interest in public sector work if you already have that on your resume, but I think if you have otherwise conventionally excellent qualifications, and can sell your interest and relevant experience in your essays, you have a shot. (I worked at a firm my 2L summer, so that doesn’t eliminate you at all, but I also did various public sector internships during the school years which may have made up for it.)

I guess I don’t think you have to have worked for DOJ specifically, since not everyone attends a school where that’s an option.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Sun Jun 19, 2022 5:00 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Sun Jun 19, 2022 1:05 pm
DOJ looks for strong interest in public service and DOJ itself. I actually don't think you're a particularly strong applicant for the honors program with zero DOJ experience. Maybe if you have a decent or great amount of other public service experience.
I think this depends a bit. If you’re looking at something like civil rights, I agree that you want to have some kind of relevant public interest experience. Civil programs, which involves work closer to general civil lit, I think less so. And I think if they got a decent amount of criminal experience while summering and build on this while clerking, crim could be interested.

Again, this is where your essays can make a difference. Certainly it’s easier to show your interest in public sector work if you already have that on your resume, but I think if you have otherwise conventionally excellent qualifications, and can sell your interest and relevant experience in your essays, you have a shot. (I worked at a firm my 2L summer, so that doesn’t eliminate you at all, but I also did various public sector internships during the school years which may have made up for it.)

I guess I don’t think you have to have worked for DOJ specifically, since not everyone attends a school where that’s an option.
To add a data point to this, I worked at civil litigation law firms both summers during law school and am entering DOJ honors in the fall. I strongly agree that essays will make a huge difference, as well as leaning on your clerkship as the pivoting point as to why you’re now interested in government work. If you were a 3L, this would be a different story but with your clerkship, if you mail the essays and interviews you have a shot. I also truly feel like there’s no shame in saying what I said (so long as it’s true): I needed a paid internship and SLIP wasn’t an option. DOJ really understands that unpaid internships, especially for students who don’t live in the market, are a huge financial endeavor.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Jun 25, 2022 9:20 pm

I’m very interested in MLARS in Crim. Considering that, is there a downside to ranking the asset forfeiture fellowship over Crim-Trial? I’d love to do either, so I want to rank in a way that maximizes my chances to be considers for either. (No clue if I’m wrong and there’s no ranking involved for preferred sections in Crim. I’m planning to rank Crim first.)

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Jul 17, 2022 10:29 pm

Anyone know how hard it is to snag one of the SDNY USAO spots out of DOJ Honors? Seems they’re hiring up to 4 AUSAs this way this year!

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2022 4:13 pm

Does anyone know how competitive the Environmental and Natural Resources Division is? I want to do litigation in this division but have average grades and no environmental experience through my 2 clerkships that were litigation heavy firms. Does commitment to school organizations in the E&NR area show enough interest in the division? I started law school relatively young (21) and wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do with my J.D. post graduation, but government work in this area is extremely interesting to me. Does anyone have any tips, advice or want to shoot me straight? Anything helps.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2022 4:34 pm

Re the SDNY USAO slots, when I interned there during summer, I worked for a DOJ honors hire who told me they wanted at least 1 but preferably two clerkships.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2022 8:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Jul 25, 2022 4:13 pm
Does anyone know how competitive the Environmental and Natural Resources Division is? I want to do litigation in this division but have average grades and no environmental experience through my 2 clerkships that were litigation heavy firms. Does commitment to school organizations in the E&NR area show enough interest in the division? I started law school relatively young (21) and wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do with my J.D. post graduation, but government work in this area is extremely interesting to me. Does anyone have any tips, advice or want to shoot me straight? Anything helps.
If you've worked for a firm after graduation you can't apply to DOJ honors. (Not sure exactly what you mean by "clerking" for a firm for two years, generally I've only heard of being a "clerk" at a firm for the period when you start but before you're admitted to the bar. You should make sure you're eligible to come in through honors, otherwise you have to apply for lateral positions.)

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2022 9:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Jul 25, 2022 4:13 pm
Does anyone know how competitive the Environmental and Natural Resources Division is? I want to do litigation in this division but have average grades and no environmental experience through my 2 clerkships that were litigation heavy firms. Does commitment to school organizations in the E&NR area show enough interest in the division? I started law school relatively young (21) and wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do with my J.D. post graduation, but government work in this area is extremely interesting to me. Does anyone have any tips, advice or want to shoot me straight? Anything helps.
I'm assuming by clerkships with firms you mean summer positions? All honors positions are competitive just because there aren't very many of them. Not sure what good telling you it's competitive will do - you can either apply with the experience you do have, or not, and there's no point in ruling yourself out. Best thing you can do is use the essay components in the application to really sell your interest in environmental stuff and also sell how your litigation experience gave you transferable skills that work for any kind of litigation, including environmental. You don't get a writing sample or cover letter so those essay components are especially important.

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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Jul 30, 2022 6:34 pm

Anyone know anything about the position at the USAO in the District of Arizona? My understanding is it’s a criminal position? But wondering what type of work the hiree would be doing? How are the hours? Etc.


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Re: DOJ Honors Program 2022-2023

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 15, 2022 11:38 am

Hi all. I know this process is just starting, but as someone who went through it last year (and ultimately received an offer), I wanted to provide a few (unsolicited) quick tips at least for the application stage.

Like everyone else, I think the essays are where most of your focus should be. I wrote the general prompt like a cover letter and only chose to apply to two sections because I really wanted to communicate why I wanted those particular sections within the limited word count. I don’t know if this was advisable because I focused on the more competitive sections. Looking back, I would tell others to take a hard look at their app and what they are qualified for. If I did this, I would have realized I wasn’t qualified for CRT and could have instead applied to a different section where I would potentially be more likely to secure an offer.

For the prompt asking something about yourself not in the application, I didn’t focus on career-oriented things at all. Instead, I talked about a specific personality trait I had and how it shaped my world view. This particular essay was brought up in all of my interviews.

Anyways I think those things helped me secure interviews, which is the first hurdle in this crazy process.

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