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Author Topic: What about government jobs?  (Read 6551 times)

vap

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2008, 03:22:49 PM »
I'm interested in a government job (DOJ Honors, AG, etc.) after law school as well. Does anyone have any information regarding whether going to one of MVP with a scholarship would limit my options compared to Columbia or NYU? If so, to what extent?

I doubt it will limit... unless you want to work in New York.

Just on personal anecdote, I've seen way more Michigan and Virginia DOJ attorneys than NYU and Columbia.

$Bill

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2008, 04:00:25 PM »
State govt jobs arent as competitive tho right

vap

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2008, 07:14:32 PM »
Also, how does one move from one side (step 1) of the payscale in, say, GS-12, to the other side (step 10)?

DOJ attorneys typically don't go up steps until they've maxed out on GS.  Thereafter, steps typically increase on a yearly basis.  However, steps are often discretionary and can go up less than once per year.  Exceptional service can also increase a step.

In addition to the GS and steps, federal employees get a yearly inflation adjustment (pretty sure it's usually between 1 and 3 percent).

vap

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2008, 07:29:17 PM »
Is there any reason to believe DOJ attorneys make any more than other attorneys in the federal government?

You'd have to check each website and/or usajobs.gov.

I have no reason to believe DOJ attorneys make more.

For example, FEC hires at GS-11. (http://www.fec.gov/pages/jobs/08-011.pdf)
IRS hires at GS-11, Step 4.  (http://www.jobs.irs.gov/car_other_atty_honors.html)
According to usajobs.gov, several Homeland Security attorney positions also start at GS-11.

$Bill

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2008, 08:33:12 AM »
State govt jobs arent as competitive tho right

Depends. Are you applying to the Manhattan DA or a smaller county DA (as just one example)

Good thread, I'm keeping this stuff in mind.

Boston or county DA, or perhaps contracts/union work with construction or police/fire.  As much as the starting money sucks, the benefits and job security (as well as earnings after 5-10 years) of a Massachusetts state job simply cant be denied.  And there should be enough time after working 35 hours to do some part time work on the side for friends firms.

tashakies

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2008, 04:55:16 PM »

[/quote]

Depends. Are you applying to the Manhattan DA or a smaller county DA (as just one example)

Good thread, I'm keeping this stuff in mind.
[/quote]


Are you comparing the Manhattan DA to smaller counties because it is super competitive? How difficult is it to land a DA position in NYC compared to other large cities, like Boston, SanFran, San Diego, Los Angeles for example?

vap

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2008, 06:15:59 PM »
Yeah, that was kinda my point: the big cities are more competitive than DA offices that have smaller population centers (small cities, suburban, rural, etc).

I don't know if I would always agree with this assertion... As I understand it, Dallas is pretty easy to break into as a DA compared to the surrounding counties.  Big city DAs tend to have more turnover than the smaller population and suburban areas.

tashakies

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2008, 04:39:21 AM »
What about NYC DA? I think I read somewhere about it being 2000:1 or 200:1??? Anyways, it being ridiculously super competitive but I could be recalling a bad dream ;)

Future JDJiver

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2008, 01:26:44 PM »
What about NYC DA? I think I read somewhere about it being 2000:1 or 200:1??? Anyways, it being ridiculously super competitive but I could be recalling a bad dream ;)

I received offers from the Manhattan DA and the DOJ HP, but ultimately decided to defer the decision and do a clerkship. I did not go to a T14 but had pretty good grades.

The Manhattan DA is highly competitive, but I think people have a misguided sense of what competitive means in the government/prosecutorial context. While some agencies are really hung up on School/GPA (DOJ, FTC, etc.), most, including the Manhattan DA, aren't so. They are competitive in the sense that they're looking for people with great judgment, courtroom presence and trial skills in addition to intelligence. To steal a quote from someone, they are looking for lawyers who are just as good handling a 4th amendment suppression motion at 2pm as they are interrogating a murder suspect at a local precinct at 2am. It's one of the best jobs out there, but also one of the toughest. Manhattan ADAs often have 175-200 cases, and when they start out it's not uncommon to do several minor trials a week. It's very different from the typical fed or state job that involves more writing and research. One former ADA said he never wrote more than 5 pages during his 3-year tenure at the office.

Obviously the better the school and grades, the better your chances (The DA himself is a yale grad). Obviously a C+ in Crim Pro or Evidence is going to sting you, but they won't get hung up over a low grade in Trusts & Estates or something. Above all they're looking for smart people who have a fire in their belly but an even keeled head. They recognize that school and GPA aren't dispositive of that.

Yossarian

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Re: What about government jobs?
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2008, 01:43:29 PM »
Great post JDJiver, thanks for the helpful info. Obviously you got impressive offers coming out of school, did you demonstrate a "commitment to public service" while in law school? It seems that many govt job applications like to see a commitment to public service. Does this mean they do not like seeing you spend 2L summer at a big firm? Can you offset doing a summer associate position at a big firm by doing PI stuff during the school year?
W&L '11