Law School Discussion

Ideal 1L Summer???

Ideal 1L Summer???
« on: June 29, 2007, 11:49:31 AM »
I just wanted to pose a hypothetical question...

What is the ideal summer job for a 1L? I know that there are many factors, but let's say that I am in the top 5% of my class and I have an open mind about what type of law I want to practice. Do 1L's clerk for fed. judges or work in BigLaw for large salaries like 2L's? I know all of this depends on the type of law the student plans on practicing, but I just wanted to know what would be considered an awesome job for a summer 1L across the board.

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2007, 12:10:59 PM »
Here's what I think... if you are top 5% at a good school then I say take the summer off and relax and have a good time as it will be your last free summer for a while.

If you can get a BIGLAW SA gig as a 1L that is worth taking for the nice chunk of change they will give you plus a lot of it is social events anyways.  However a 1L SA gig is hard to come by, and usually only available for grads at top schools.  Since you are top 5% I would send resumes out to every big firm in your city and try anyways b/c you might still get a position. (if you dont go to a top school)

But if you have to settle for small/medium firm... Don't do it...A lot of people will say you need some kind of job experience for interviewing as a 2L, but if you are top 5% you are already in anyways.  Don't do what I am now doing... I am working full time for a smallish firm and taking summer school as well.  It sucks!  I can't wait for fall semester to begin.

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2007, 12:23:39 PM »
FYI, I don't think taking 1L summer off is a good idea.  A major reason most firms hire only 2Ls is because of the summer of legal work experience.  I'm working in a small firm right now and love it, although I interviewed with a few larger firms that I would've really like to work for.

I don't think federal summer clerkships are that hard to come by, and it's great experience if you can get by without a summer income (or possibly work nights waiting tables/bartending/etc.).

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2007, 12:34:22 PM »
I'm living my ideal 1L summer. I just finished up my third and final semester of Legal Research and Writing. I had class three days a week and got plenty of relaxation. I am about to start as a clerk at the 3rd largest firm in the state that I live, and I am studying for the Patent Bar Exam. Little bit of school, little bit of work, little bit of money, and a chance to help my chances for next summer by taking the Patent Bar Exam. I can't imagine much better personally. Also, by taking LRW, I will have the advantage over the the majority, if not all, of the other summer associates that I will be working with.

vaplaugh

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2007, 01:37:05 PM »
This would be my hierarchy of what looks best on a resume for 1L summer.  Of course, different people will have different opinions.

1) US Ct. of Appeals
2) BigLaw or rare federal government position
3) US District Court or State Supreme Court (but some of these might be trumped by a solid medium law firm)
4) Medium law firm, state appellate court, or other federal government position
5) State government position
6) State trial judge, county/local government position, small firm
7) Public interest or county judge

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2007, 01:37:33 PM »
Here's what I think... if you are top 5% at a good school then I say take the summer off and relax and have a good time as it will be your last free summer for a while.

If you can get a BIGLAW SA gig as a 1L that is worth taking for the nice chunk of change they will give you plus a lot of it is social events anyways.  However a 1L SA gig is hard to come by, and usually only available for grads at top schools.  Since you are top 5% I would send resumes out to every big firm in your city and try anyways b/c you might still get a position. (if you dont go to a top school)

But if you have to settle for small/medium firm... Don't do it...A lot of people will say you need some kind of job experience for interviewing as a 2L, but if you are top 5% you are already in anyways.  Don't do what I am now doing... I am working full time for a smallish firm and taking summer school as well.  It sucks!  I can't wait for fall semester to begin.

I disagree.  Don't take your 1L summer off, at least do something: interning for the judge, fed/state govt or for a firm, or study abroad.  Just don't do nothing.  It is a terrible idea.  Do you think the firm will be pleased to know that you are not even motivated enough to get a summer job?  

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2007, 01:39:04 PM »
This would be my hierarchy of what looks best on a resume for 1L summer.  Of course, different people will have different opinions.

1) US Ct. of Appeals
2) BigLaw or rare federal government position
3) US District Court or State Supreme Court (but some of these might be trumped by a solid medium law firm)
4) Medium law firm, state appellate court, or other federal government position
5) State government position
6) State trial judge, county/local government position, small firm
7) Public interest or county judge

What would be "rare federal govt position"?  What would be "non-rare" position?

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2007, 01:51:12 PM »
tag

vaplaugh

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2007, 02:08:29 PM »
Well, I guess they're all rare.  When I said rare, it should have been "ultra-rare" or something... like the solicitor general's office, DOJ office of legal policy, the senate judiciary committee, or SDNY US attorneys' office.  Maybe you could lump in some appellate sections within divisions of the DOJ.  Of course, such a breakdown is subjective, but for example, quite a few people intern with certain government agencies/divisions.  DOJ Civil Division hires about 70, ENRD (environment and natural resources division) hires about 75,  and some US Attorneys' Offices hire lots of students.

In other words, most positions usually reserved for only the best 2L candidates, whereas being there as a 1L makes it even more impressive.  If you don't go to a top 10 school (like me, as in, I don't go to a top 10 school) it probably doesn't matter.

Again, some people (particularly those seeking federal government employment upon graduation) might place an emphasis on a particular federal government agency for 1L summer over, say, a medium size law firm or generic US district court internship.

Re: Ideal 1L Summer???
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2007, 03:10:54 PM »
Well, I am not sure about that.  I know a few students at the bottom of my class, (top 30) that is working for DOJ, one is working on environmental issues.  I also know a few students from tier 4 schools that are working for the SEC.  It seems to me that most federal govt job are quite easy to get. 
But no doubt, solicitor general's office would be pretty hard to land.