Thursday, February 01, 2007

One L Search for Everlasting Employment

Greetings Boalties.

It has come to my attention (ok - no one should have been ignorant of this) that 1L's are freaking on jobs. The CDO doesn't really help; even people that HAVE jobs get stressed after talking to the CDO.

I wanted to open up a thread on the 1L Search. What have you 1L's learned? What do 2L's and 3L's have to offer in terms of advice?

It isn't too late to figure these things out. Externships for the ND Cal. are coming up soon, and PI/PS day is right around the corner. And we have all seen those 1L's strutting their stuff in their fancy new Target brand suits.

As for you 1L's that have landed a job through an interview (or having gone to high school with the son of partner so-and-so), what advice can you offer classmates on interviews?

Post away (and feel free to vent your anger/stress/despair as well)!

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Anonymous Anonymous 2L said...

My advice for 1Ls - If you have any interest at all in a judicial externship, do one during your 1L summer! A few talking points:

1. They are a great learning experience. If ever there was a robust "trial by fire" experience, it's working in a judge's chambers. Granted, certain judges will provide a better experience than others (so you should do some research there).
2a. It's a great "wrap-up" to everything you've learned during 1L year. After reading case after case, here's your chance to see what happens behind the scenes of the judicial opinion.
2b. The work there will provide a great deal of variety, probably more so than any other position you could take. Of course you'll get plenty of opportunity to use your Civ. Pro. knowledge, but probably every other 1L class as well.
3. They look *fantastic* on your resumé, again, arguably more so than any other position you could land during your 1L summer. It provides instant credibility for future interviews (largely due to reason #1, above).
4. In relation to Tom's previous post re: clerkships -- working as a judicial extern can help you decide (at relatively no risk to yourself) whether or not you are interested in a clerkship, and help build your resumé for applying for clerkships later on down the road.
5. 1L summer really is the best (i.e. most convenient) time to do it. 2L summer will probably find most people working in a position that they hope will lead to a job offer upon graduation (e.g. law firms, big or small). If you do an externship during the school year it must be 2L Spring or 3L Fall (according to Field Placement Office) and due to the fact that most judges only want full-time externs, you will have to sign on for a full 10 units (40 hours/week) and pretty much abandon campus for a semester. Not only is the units:hours ratio poor, but you'll still have to take additional units on top of your externship to hit the 14 unit average.

2/01/2007 1:03 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

As a current N.D. Cal. clerk, my advice regarding externships is to apply NOW, if you haven't already done so. We've already hired our summer externs. I'm not sure what other judges' schedules are.

Don't be shy about applying before all your grades are in.

2/01/2007 7:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My advice is to be aggressive. Don't just send in applications and sit back and twiddle your thumbs until you hear back from them. Call before you send in your application and ask if they're accepting applications, where, how and to whom you should send your application, and see if you can chat with someone about the internship. After you send in an application, follow up and see if they received it and if they want any additional materials from you.

Also, for gov't and public interest jobs, write a detailed cover letter explaining your interest in the position. Tailor your resume to the position.

Lastly, leave controversial political activities off your resume, unless you're certain the experience will appeal to the organization you're applying to.

2/01/2007 10:28 AM  
Blogger Isaac said...

Also, be open to the possibility that some of the jobs you're looking at for the summer might turn out to be good internships to do during the year. Timing is everything, and you may find that you make a great connection with a potential employer but either 1) you decide to accept a different position or 2) they just don't have enough slots to offer you one for the summer. I had an interview for what I thought was going to be a summer job that turned into a terriffic fall-semester internship.

2/01/2007 11:15 AM  

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