Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Author Topic: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?  (Read 1403 times)

Team Awesome

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 489
    • View Profile
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #10 on: March 12, 2008, 12:52:42 PM »
Thanks for the response.  I've heard so many varying opinions and just trying to get some more.  The paralegal certificate, you can work full time and still get it.  Meaning I could work at a law firm (at any position they will offer) while getting the certificate and eventually become a paralegal.  Blah blah blah....


I was kind of looking for some unique ideas as well.  I'm not going to cry myself to sleep if my 'options' seem to all suck. 

You've got plenty of time to find an inventive way to spend a year.

cisforcookie

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 45
    • View Profile
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2008, 01:05:44 PM »
if I had it to do over again, I think I would try harder to get a position working for a local political group or official. still, my current gig, working for a big business in normal business type ways, strikes me as a better way to spend time than working for a law firm. you'll have your whole life to work for law firms. don't you want to at least try working in a non-legal profession? don't think about your career so much. most law grads never worked at anything else (except maybe some part time work during college), and i'm sure it limits their perspective, especially when dealing with clients who operate in a very different world.

Billy Mays here FOREVER!

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 2129
    • View Profile
    • LSN
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2008, 02:16:05 PM »
I have taken what will be 2 yrs off and I have worked as an entry level paralegal at a mid-sized biglaw firm.  It's been good for me because I've been exposed to the legal community - and I could not imagine seeing myself anywhere else.  I've work on pro-bono cases, I've worked on trials, I've worked on cases that tend to settle, and it's really going to give me a heads up in my career.  I already have a feel for the legal community, I know what the dynamics are like.  I know what people want to hear and don't want to hear.  I know how partners and associates interact in these big firms.  I've interacted with clients personally before.  I think I'll also put this to good use in law school.  I don't think it will make law school any easier, but I do think I will be learning things and I will know at least somewhat how to apply them in the real world, so I am getting a fuller picture than the other kids just out of undergrad. 

Also, I LIKE my job!  I like learning new things about the law, even small.  It's been a great fit for me personally.  Additionally, I know how the hierarchy in the legal community works, and I know what it's like to be a paralegal, and how valuable they are.  I will ALWAYS value any support staff that is working with me.

I don't think you should go for any degrees, even a paralegal cert.  It's a waste of time and money, and time better spent in the working world, learning real world experience and getting some pre-law school jobs on your resume to talk about to law schools in your application.  Some people say don't do the paralegal thing, do something different.  For me it was perfect, but I can see how being exposed to something else would be cool too.

Is it in Boston? because if it is, I may have an educated guess to what firm it is

camarogirlj

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 94
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2008, 02:23:08 PM »
I got a position as a "project assistant" at a large firm right after I graduated.  I will say that the pay and benefits are good and you'll meet lots of people who can offer perspective on the entire law school experience.  I have learned a lot and I've also learned what areas of law I DO NOT want to be practicing in forever (CORPORATE LITIGATION!!!) 

I started a year-long paralegal program from a law school while I was working but decided to stop after a quarter and a half.  I realized that I did indeed want to be a lawyer 100% and that I was wasting my time, money, and energy on such a program.  If you know you want to be a lawyer/attend law school then I'd say work and save money.

One last thing,  I'm actually looking for a somewhat fun NON-LEGAL position for this summer to get a break before law school.  Perhaps finding a job you'll enjoy in a non-legal field is your best bet :)

kingofcool

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2008, 09:10:44 PM »
If I had the option I would do something extremely creative for the year but I don't for a couple of reasons.  One being a domestic reason and the other, and the whole purpose of this thread, is that I am not a sho-in and I feel I need to utilize this year in anyway possible.

I do have experience working in an intern position in criminal law and also working in politics.  I do have experience and feel I could really get any position I want (within reason, hope that doesn't sound too pompous).  I have thought about just working the connection and working a low level job for some state rep/politician in atl just because it would be something to do.

Re: the paralegal certificate, I realize you don't have to have this.  I might do it just to build my experience.  Once again, this is the year to whore myself out to whatever it takes to look better.  Including paying way too much for a certificate that's not needed to get a job but is law related. 

woeisme

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 474
  • Untouchable
    • View Profile
    • LSN
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2008, 01:53:52 AM »
Thanks for the response.  I've heard so many varying opinions and just trying to get some more.  The paralegal certificate, you can work full time and still get it.  Meaning I could work at a law firm (at any position they will offer) while getting the certificate and eventually become a paralegal.  Blah blah blah....


I was kind of looking for some unique ideas as well.  I'm not going to cry myself to sleep if my 'options' seem to all suck. 

A paralegal certificate seems like a waste though if you're never going to actually use it.
Cornell Law School Class of 2011 ... ftw.

Blondie918

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 52
    • View Profile
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2008, 09:37:15 AM »
I talked to the Managing Attorney at my office today, let him know I was going to law school, etc, and he seemed very interested in having me back my 1L summer (as my sig suggests, I'm not going to go to a school that typically lands 1L SA positions).  It seems like entry-level for my firm is 80-100k, which obviously isn't amazing, but I'll be more than happy to take the experience and money.  I also really enjoy my job and the pay is as good as anywhere else I could get.

I don't believe this would be a real possibility working in a non-law environment.


Is networking with attorneys to land SA positions possible at the huge NYC firms, for those of you that are there?

It is very possible, I am at a large Philadelphia firm which also has a firm in NYC and LA, I have already been told that all I need to do is get a law degree and I have job.  And as you can see I'm not going to a T10 school.

ccllnd

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 25
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2008, 11:40:07 AM »
Advice from an old guy - study your ass off for the LSAT and take the year off and enjoy yourself!  Go travelling, volunteer doing something you love, etc, etc.  Do something out of the ordinary that you've always wanted to do - not only will you thank yourself later in life, but you will also distinguish yourself as an applicant with unique experiences to bring to law school.  I can guarantee you by the time you hit 30 that 1 year of paralegal experience or whatever will not amount to a hill of beans relative to your career situation.  You're young - have fun!  You've got the next 40 years to worry about working  :)

Team Awesome

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 489
    • View Profile
Re: Common Question: What to do with the year in between?
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2008, 02:39:27 PM »
Advice from an old guy - study your ass off for the LSAT and take the year off and enjoy yourself!  Go travelling, volunteer doing something you love, etc, etc.  Do something out of the ordinary that you've always wanted to do - not only will you thank yourself later in life, but you will also distinguish yourself as an applicant with unique experiences to bring to law school.  I can guarantee you by the time you hit 30 that 1 year of paralegal experience or whatever will not amount to a hill of beans relative to your career situation.  You're young - have fun!  You've got the next 40 years to worry about working  :)
I love when veterans chime in. Appreciated.