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Author Topic: Mercer Law 2L taking questions  (Read 7390 times)

lawness

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2009, 05:39:02 AM »
Do you have any idea if any Mercer 1L's worked as summer associates for a large firm? Is that an impossible goal coming from Mercer? I heard from another Mercer Grad that there are some 1L summer opportunities in Macon, but rarely in Atlanta. Does the Career Services Office assist you in securing paid summer employment?

vap

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2009, 09:38:07 AM »
Do you have any idea if any Mercer 1L's worked as summer associates for a large firm? Is that an impossible goal coming from Mercer? I heard from another Mercer Grad that there are some 1L summer opportunities in Macon, but rarely in Atlanta. Does the Career Services Office assist you in securing paid summer employment?

Very few students at most schools will work for a large firm as a 1L.  That being said, I know a few people in my class who worked in Atlanta at market-paying firms (smaller offices of large firms) and one person who worked at a large firm in Los Angeles during our 1L summer.  They had grades in the top 5% or 10%.  It's possible, but very unlikely.  So, I would not count on a large firm job.  Most students work unpaid positions during 1L summer.  Most of the students who get paid work at smaller firms are not paid exorbitant wages. 

The CSO brings employers to campus for OCI, and upon request will provide you with lists of firms and other employers who have hired students from Mercer in the past.  The CSO will also review and edit resumes and cover letters, usually within 48 hours.  They also collect and distribute information about career fairs and specific job openings in Georgia and other parts of the country.  The Law & Public Service Program also has information about paying public interest opportunities (most of which have a $6K summer stipend) in Atlanta.

lawness

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #22 on: February 15, 2009, 11:29:09 AM »
What are the large firm prospects during 2L, assuming you have grades in the top 10%?

vap

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #23 on: February 15, 2009, 01:18:57 PM »
What are the large firm prospects during 2L, assuming you have grades in the top 10%?

Big firm prospects are very good if you are in the top 10% of the class.  Someone with top 10% grades will probably get interviews with all the large law firms during OCI and with some other firms that do not do OCI.

The cutoff for grading-on to Law Review is top 15% (depending on class size, this is usually the sure bet).  Students on Law Review will generally get interviews with all or almost all the large firms that attend OCI.

If I had to guess, I'd say that about 12-15% of my class has offers from big firms (or at the very least, firms paying +$100K).  Some are outside the the top 15% of the class.  Another 5-10% or so have offers from Macon firms.  Some people are going back to small firms in Atlanta or across the state.  Some will return to their 1L summer firms.  Others will work in government, public interest, or for judges (typically unpaid).

Once you get the interview, it's about personality.  Also, it's important to show a demonstrated interest in the city for which you are interviewing.

EDIT:  I forgot to mention that most of the biglaw cutoffs (class ranking requested by the firms before you apply) were top 25%.  Some were top 33%, and some were top 20%.  One I remember was top 10%.

Contract2008

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #24 on: February 15, 2009, 03:44:17 PM »
If anybody has questions about Mercer, I'm happy to answer. 

In the meantime... (and I could elaborate on any of these issues if you like)

Pros
1.  Nationally recognized legal writing program (courses are taught by tenure and tenure-track professors; 8 graded credit hours over 3 semesters; and a legal writing certificate program)
2.  Award-winning, unique curriculum (including required ethics course for 1Ls; "intro to law" course, which acclimates 1Ls to reading/briefing cases and taking a law school exam during the week before regular classes begin; upper-level 1 credit hour required courses including client counseling, negotiations, and statutory interpretation).
3.  Great profs (both in my opinion, and recognized by student survey ranking from Princeton Review)
4.  Small, close-knit student body with a student to faculty ratio of about 13:1.
6.  Many large scholarships (including about 6-10 each year that include living stipends).
7.  Large endowment (a semi-old study by Leiter ranks it fourth in the country after adjusting for number of students and COL).


Does that long list of pros above means much at all when it comes to getting jobs?  Would a law firm in Atlanta choose a Mercer grad over UGA graduate (or even GSU grads) because of number 1, 2, 3, or 4 on that list?  Seriously, do you really think employers care about your above list when it comes to hiring?  In case you're too inexperience to answer that question, the answer is "no."  Your law school use it only to lure prospective students, hiring partner generally don't give a damn about all these other "specialty" ranking other than the real ranking that places Mercer at a 4th place in a state with only one big city. 

How much do you really know about the TRUE employment stats of your law school?  How many of the 2008 grads do you know that are employed (as attorneys and not waiters), how many are doing law clerk work, and how many are unemployed in the legal field? 


vap

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #25 on: February 15, 2009, 08:45:49 PM »
In case you're too inexperience to answer that question, the answer is "no."  Your law school use it only to lure prospective students, hiring partner generally don't give a damn about all these other "specialty" ranking other than the real ranking that places Mercer at a 4th place in a state with only one big city.

Well, you are certainly coming at this with a bias.  My aim was to answer questions from prospective students, not graduates from other law schools.  But, I'll still address your questions.  Hopefully you're not just a troll coming to shittt on people who attend non-T1 schools.

Does that long list of pros above means much at all when it comes to getting jobs?

Not a whole lot.  A few of my interviewers mentioned my scholarship to the school, and some seemed very interested in the legal writing program.  None were biglaw, and thus none were for permanent employment.  The only law firm interviews I had were for SA gigs at biglaw, so I'm not sure how the local firms view the writing program or the practice-oriented required courses.

A couple of the law clerks and judges I interviewed with for internships mentioned the scholarship, and I brought up the legal writing program in one interview.  We talked about it quite a bit, and I got an offer.  Both topics also came up in my interview for a DOJ SLIP  position.  I received an offer.

I think #s 3 and 4 (about profs), is helpful at any school.  I received one of my 2L summer jobs (U.S. Court of Appeals judge) because a prof knew the judge and passed along my resume.  I heard someone else got an SA offer with a boutique litigation firm (paying market) because another prof forwarded along a resume.  I've known lawyers who graduated from other schools and have had similar experiences.  So, this is certainly not a Mercer-specific aspect of law school.  I do, however, think a low student/faculty ratio helps.  I also think that Mercer profs go out of their way to look out for students.

Would a law firm in Atlanta choose a Mercer grad over UGA graduate because of number 1, 2, 3, or 4 on that list?

All else being equal, probably not.  But I have no idea; I'm not a hiring partner.

I can comment on the class of 2010 with more authority because I am more familiar with where my peers are working this summer.  I know a lot of people working biglaw and small law in Atlanta (see post above for estimated large firm placement).  I would assume that the firms could get UGA students if they wanted to, but they hired Mercer students. 

No doubt, though, that UGA generally offers better career prospects.  From what I'm told, firms hire deeper into the class at UGA.  And, with cheap in-state tuition, UGA is a great option.  However, I would guess that most people who are accepted to UGA would have a full scholarship offer from Mercer.

Would a law firm in Atlanta choose a Mercer grad over GSU grad because of number 1, 2, 3, or 4 on that list?

All else being equal, maybe.  But again, I'm not a hiring partner, so I can't comment.  I know from external sources that NLJ 250 firm placement is similar, but GSU has a very slight edge.  Mercer places more grads in judicial clerkships.

Seriously, do you really think employers care about your above list when it comes to hiring?

See the answer to your first question.


How much do you really know about the TRUE employment stats of your law school?

See my post above about SA gigs for class of 2010.

How many of the 2008 grads do you know that are employed (as attorneys and not waiters), how many are doing law clerk work, and how many are unemployed in the legal field?

Off the top of my head, I can think of 14 grads from 2008 who I spoke with in the few months before they graduated:

Two were headed for Atlanta biglaw.  One of them was top 15%, the other was outside the top 15%, but I'm not sure how far away.
Two were headed for a public defender's office.  Students were outside the top 15%, but I'm not sure how far away.  One of the students had an offer conditional upon passing the bar.
One obtained a state-level government job.  Student was outside the top 15%, but I'm not sure how far away. Also had Moot Court.  (Student did not get the job until after passing the bar).
One was headed for non-Atlanta biglaw (small regional office).  Student was outside the top 15%, but I'm not sure how far away.
One was headed for a clerkship with a U.S. magistrate judge.  Student was in the top 10%.
One was headed for a state clerkship.  Student was outside the top 15%, but I'm not sure how far away.
One was headed for a small law firm specializing in family law. No idea about class rank.
One was getting an LLM in Tax at GULC.  Student was around top 30%, IIRC.
One was unemployed and not seeking b/c she was having a baby.
Three were unemployed.

menlow

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2009, 09:15:42 PM »
on a lighter note, i'll be getting some good news ($$$?) from Mercer pretty soon..  i'm excited.

vap

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Re: Mercer Law 2L taking questions
« Reply #27 on: February 15, 2009, 10:22:57 PM »
on a lighter note, i'll be getting some good news ($$$?) from Mercer pretty soon..  i'm excited.

Congrats!  Another positive about scholarships at Mercer is that they are renewed so long as you maintain "good standing" (well, this was true for the class of 2010, so I assume it's the same).  That is, you keep your scholarship so long as you don't flunk out, and IIRC we did not lose any students last year because of academic attrition.