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Author Topic: judicial internship  (Read 3557 times)

paradiddle

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judicial internship
« on: December 13, 2007, 12:38:02 AM »
hi all,

recently shot a few judicial internships apps to my home state and have one interview set up over winter break with a federal district judge. in terms of "ranking" 1L summer experiences, where does this stand? i've heard that getting a judicial internship with a judge at the (federal) court of appeals is comparable to working in biglaw. where would an internship with a district judge stand?

vaplaugh

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2007, 08:20:28 AM »
These are my general categories.  Of course, others may disagree.  The firms might be ranked lower or higher than the others, depending on how much you would like the money.

1)  Biglaw, USCOA judge, or extremely rare federal government position (Solicitor General, etc. mostly only to 2L or 3L).
2)  Midlaw, USDC judge, state supreme court judge, other federal government position (US attorney, other DOJ, non-DOJ).
3)  Small firm that pays, state appellate court judge, rare state government position (AG office, Governor's offfice, etc.), or
other US judges (magistrate, bankruptcy, tax, immigration, federal claims - however, some of these will be in the higher category if you plan on specializing in that area of law)
4)  Small firm unpaid, other state government, public defender, district attorney, state trial judge, public interest.
5)  Research assistant, study abroad.

Of course, the best position is the one that's right for you and that you think will provide you with a rewarding experience.

p0six

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2007, 08:43:40 AM »
I've never heard of a 1L getting a summer externship with a judge at the appellate level.  That would be pretty badass.

That being said, I *personally* think that working for a judge is probably one of the best experiences you'll ever have (I worked at the state trial level).  I would definitely (again *personally*) place it above any firm clerking (although not a SA position since that has the big bucks) position.  During OCI in almost every interview I was asked about my experience in my externship and I had a pretty good story to tell, who knows what my story would've been if I was a research monkey for a medium sized firm.

That being said, of course you have to take into account your own circumstances.

none

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2007, 02:43:22 PM »
p0six,
I couldn't agree more. I interned at the state trial level and had an incredible time.  I was offered a non-DOJ federal agency internship but turned it down to work for the judge.  Later on, I happened to meet someone from my school had accepted the offer to the federal agency.  Judging from what she told me, I had a MUCH better summer.  Federal bureacracy sucks. :)

paradiddle

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2008, 05:11:36 PM »
hey, i'm trying to decide between offers to intern for a USDC judge in california and a state supreme court judge in a small new england state. i prefer coming back to california after graduation. all in all, do the potential networking connections and so forth *really* matter when weighing these options? i don't mind staying in new england for the summer.

These are my general categories.  Of course, others may disagree.  The firms might be ranked lower or higher than the others, depending on how much you would like the money.

1)  Biglaw, USCOA judge, or extremely rare federal government position (Solicitor General, etc. mostly only to 2L or 3L).
2)  Midlaw, USDC judge, state supreme court judge, other federal government position (US attorney, other DOJ, non-DOJ).
3)  Small firm that pays, state appellate court judge, rare state government position (AG office, Governor's offfice, etc.), or
other US judges (magistrate, bankruptcy, tax, immigration, federal claims - however, some of these will be in the higher category if you plan on specializing in that area of law)

jacy85

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2008, 06:07:09 PM »
California, hands down.  The judge you work for can be a fantastic reference and contact for you.  I know people who got calls from the judges they worked for letting them know such and such law firm was looking for a summer, or had some work to be done during the semester that could turn into a SA position and an offer, etc.

vaplaugh

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2008, 10:20:35 PM »
hey, i'm trying to decide between offers to intern for a USDC judge in california and a state supreme court judge in a small new england state. i prefer coming back to california after graduation. all in all, do the potential networking connections and so forth *really* matter when weighing these options? i don't mind staying in new england for the summer.

Do you go to Harvard or Yale? (Implicit in this question: will the name of your school transfer to California without establishing work ties)?

If you go to a lower ranked school, definitely take the USDC offer in CA.  Establishing a network will aid finding employment in CA.  If you go to a national school, I wouldn't worry so much about establishing a legal network in CA.  Though, it might still be the better option.  What does your gut say?  Getting along with the clerks/judge can be very important.

Just my two cents.

What about splitting the summer?

paradiddle

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Re: judicial internship
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2008, 03:03:28 AM »
I go to a school somewhere in the #18-28 range (trying to remain anonymous), which I believe has a decent national rep for its ranking, whatever that means. i'll probably take the offer in california, but i'll look into splitting the summer. thanks for your comments!