Mid-Summer Check-In

Mid-Summer Check-in: Rising 2L perspective

Today we welcome back guest writer Shirlene Armstrong, rising 2L, to discuss the end of her summer experience and the anticipation of her 2L year.

My 2L year is rapidly approaching as we hit the mid summer point. Although it feels like I was taking exams and finishing my 1L year yesterday, it is almost time to go back to school and continue on my journey. Even though I feel like summer has been no time at all, I am thankful for all of the experiences from this summer and am looking forward to where my path will take me next. [Read more…]

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Working at a Smaller Firm

Working at a small law firmToday, we welcome back Shirlene Armstrong, guest writer and now rising second-year law student to share her experience working at a small law firm this summer.

In law school, your down time is dedicated to studying, living, and breathing the law. As such, law student’s summers are dedicated to the same. Thus, the summers between your 1L and 2L years and 2L and 3L years should be dedicated to some type of legal work. Normally, rising 2Ls land an internship with a judge, work in at a Prosecutor’s office, or have some other type of internship in the legal field. Some rising 3Ls land coveted “Summer Associate” positions and work as a young associate at a firm. Other 3Ls continue their positions at their old firms or jobs, take classes, work in a legal clinic, or do legal work in some other form. As a rising 2L, I was fortunate enough to land a paid position with a firm for the summer. [Read more…]

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As a Summer Associate, Should You Burn the Midnight Oil or Have Another Drink?

Summer associates burning the midnight oilToday we welcome Christen Morgan, guest writer and foreclosure attorney, to talk about how to juggle work and social events at your summer associate job.

Before beginning your summer associate position, you knew what to expect. Your law school mentors already warned you about the long nights you would spend in the office just trying to understand an assignment. They also warned you about the nights that you may forego sleep, and instead opt to complete the assignment that the partner dropped on your desk right before you left work for that day. So when you began feeling overwhelmed your second week in, you weren’t surprised, but, despite knowing about this pressure beforehand, you panicked and resorted to the only response you knew, “burning the midnight oil.” You began turning down offers to hang out with law school friends. Even worse you began to avoid the many social events offered by your firm, as if they were actually optional (Hint: they may appear to be optional but they really aren’t). Overworking one’s self is undoubtedly a favorite pastime of the average law student and, although this reaction may have proven successful in the past, in all honesty, it may be hurting your chances to receive a full-time offer from your current position.

Overworking yourself and staying long hours at the firm may be inefficient and negatively impacting your productivity. Additionally, working long hours and overexerting yourself may be communicating that you’re horrible with time management. I assure you this is not a good look to the hiring partners – especially when you begin flaking on social events that they’ve put together just to get to know you better. So before deciding to skip out on the next happy hour social, consider the following:

[Read more…]

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Five Tips for a Successful Summer Associate Experience

Desiree MooreHow’s your summer legal job going? Today we’re thrilled to welcome back Desiree Moore, founder of Greenhorn Legal, for some expert advice on succeeding in your summer job!

Without further ado, here’s Desiree. (Oh, and check out her new project, House of Marbury, a fun style blog for women lawyers!)

Whether you are interviewing for jobs, or you have secured a clerkship or summer associate position, here are five tips that will ensure a successful experience:

[Read more…]

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Law Firm Hiring Partners Talk About What They’re Looking For

Are you interviewing for summer associate jobs? If so, I strongly suggest you watch this Bloomberg Law video series. (And I’m not just saying that because I’m in it. Trust me, I’m the low man on the totem pole here — the rest of the guests are seriously impressive BigLaw hiring partners and such.)

All total, they run about half an hour, but I pretty much guarantee you’ll learn something useful!

[Read more…]

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Do You Have, or Want, a Summer Associate Position? Some Tips for Success

Andrew JamesToday’s interview is with Andrew James, creator of the Summer Success Crash Course.

He’s here to talk about how to get a summer associate position, and what to do to ensure you succeed over the summer. If you’re going to be a summer associate, you owe it to yourself to check out his course, because it’s pretty great. The first two lessons are free, so what do you have to lose?

[Read more…]

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What It’s Like to Get a Cold Offer

icePerhaps you’ve heard rumors that some BigLaw firms make “cold offers” at the end of the summer. Instead of getting a pat on the back and an offer to return, certain summer associates get a “Thanks, but no thanks.”

But, somehow, these firms still report a 100% offer rate. What’s going on?

[Read more…]

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What Are Law Firms Looking For? Get the Inside Scoop From a Legal Recruiter!

HandshakeYou’re in for a treat! My fantastic friend Rebecca Netter, who left Biglaw to become a legal recruiter, has agreed to answer some questions about getting a legal job, from the perspective of someone who spends all day figuring out if someone is a viable candidate for legal jobs.

In other words, she knows what she’s talking about.

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The Inside Scoop on Law Firm Summer Associate Programs

HierarchyWhat, you might reasonably ask, qualifies me to talk about law firm summer associate programs? Glad you asked. Basically, I made a hobby out of being a summer associate. I managed to summer at three different firms, in three cities and two countries, over three summers, for a combined total of something absurd like 30 weeks. Hey, it’s not a bad gig! Most of the time.

Why Do Law Firms Have Summer Associates?

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Rock OCI and Get the Job You Want: Introduction

Photo of Conference Room TableFirst things first: what is OCI, anyway?

On Campus Interviewing

The name varies, but most law schools have some variant of on campus interviewing, or OCI. Basically, a bunch of law firms send representatives to a single location (either on campus or in a nearby hotel) and these people conduct short interviews with law students. Afterwards, certain chosen students are granted “callback interviews” – more extensive interviews that happen on-site at the law firm’s office. If all goes well, the callback interview results in a job offer to join the firm’s summer associate program the following summer.

One slightly odd aspect of OCI is that it generally happens before 2L classes start, so you’ll be interviewing for a job that starts after your second year of law school, before that year has even started. Kind of weird, right? And potentially problematic if the economy shifts markedly during your second year, and the firm you thought you’d be summering with decides to cancel or downsize their program, leaving you in the lurch. But let’s not dwell on that now!

How Do Firms Decide Which Students to Interview?

[Read more…]

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