Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Author Topic: clerkship or RA?  (Read 1343 times)

sheriff

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 168
    • View Profile
clerkship or RA?
« on: January 24, 2008, 10:14:20 PM »
summer position: clerkship for a trial court judge in NY (unpaid) or research assistant for a well known professor (low pay)?????
The George Washington University Class of 2010.

eli250

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 145
    • View Profile
Re: clerkship or RA?
« Reply #1 on: January 24, 2008, 11:26:39 PM »
from what I've heard, the RA positions don't help that much but summer clerkships can provide much better experience

cesco

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 344
    • View Profile
Re: clerkship or RA?
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2008, 12:43:15 AM »
I definitely vote for the judicial internship.  The experience you will get will be invaluable.  You will get a chance to decide whether you are interested in litigation, develop a great contact/reference, and get to see a wide variety of skills from the attorneys that come into the courtroom.

If you are worried about money, then perhaps you could do your internship 3-4 days a week, and then spend a day or 2 a week doing research?  Also - can you get credit for your internship? That would lighten your load next year and allow you to do the RA position during the semester.

2L

thorc954

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 376
    • View Profile
Re: clerkship or RA?
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2008, 01:32:52 AM »
Judicial internship.  Definitely do that.  A RA isnt really substantive legal work.  You are better off doing the internship.  If you have time, since most RA's are flexible, you could probably do both.

jacy85

  • LSD Obsessed
  • *****
  • Posts: 6859
    • View Profile
Re: clerkship or RA?
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2008, 07:07:46 AM »
Judicial internship.  Definitely do that.  A RA isnt really substantive legal work.  You are better off doing the internship.  If you have time, since most RA's are flexible, you could probably do both.

If doing both is a possibility, that's what I would do (and in fact what I did do 1L).  You'll get better legal experience, and getting to know a judge and their clerks is invaluable.  On the other hand, having a close relationship with a professor is also extremely valuable.  I'm still close with the professor I worked for, and she's been a fantastic mentor and adviser during law school.

Lenny

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 457
    • View Profile
Re: clerkship or RA?
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2008, 10:04:51 AM »
As usual, Jacy speaks the truth. 

Although I usually advocate the clerkship route, there may be a caveat here if you can't do both.  I assume the judge is a state judge, correct?  If you can only do one, the RA position is the right choice if, and only if, the prof gives you some kind of assurances that (assuming you do a good job) he will go to bat for you with his friends in high, highly paid places at firms.  If he is "well known" and therefore well connected, having him as your champion may be worth the haircut you'll take on substantive summer experience.