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Author Topic: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?  (Read 10463 times)

archival

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2008, 03:33:03 PM »
  You are often dealing with similar things (spouse, young kids, purchasing a home, etc.)

 :D

Yeah bringing that up as a thirty-something woman would go over great.

But how do you deal with someone who rejects your broad moral principles?
I kill them.

vercingetorix

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #21 on: October 04, 2008, 03:40:13 PM »
You are often dealing with similar things (spouse, young kids, purchasing a home, etc.) and you have more experience to draw from than "once in my frat..." or "in class one time...".  This is not to say that there aren't insanely bright and talented younger people who do well in these situations, I just found that even the best of them came off as immature. 

For the record, I'm under 30, married, own my own home, was never in a sorority, and never once talked about class in interviews unless I was asked what class was my favorite or something along those lines.

I'm not disagreeing that age can be a benefit OR a hurdle, depending on where you're at and what else you have going on for you, but to make a relatively broad statement that all young people talk about is frats and class is pretty insulting to someone under 30.  And even where you acknowledged that there are bright and talented younger people, you immediately asserted that they're all still immature.  These types of judgments and assumptions hurt everyone, because they go both ways. (and I do see that you tried to "soften" your stance later on, but I don't think you were quite successful enough to undo the insulting nature of what's quoted above).

Bottom line, a person's age can be a benefit or a burden.  Younger people may face the immature stigma in some places and jobs, and older can be assumed to not want to start at the bottom of the associate pack.  But it's all about how you spin it.  Several people I summered with and will be 1st year associates with me at a BigLaw firm were older and came from another career or with several degrees under their belt.  They spun their experience and their age as positives on their resume and their interview, and it obviously worked for them.  Also, several older students at my school got great jobs in both big firms and government.
you are right, I was making a very broad statement.  in my experience, it is an accurate observation.  there are unquestionably immature older students.  but when you match a mature, older student (noting my age range exceptions) to a mature younger student, the older student wins every time.  they related better to those interviewing them because they have done more (not due to superior aptitude or ability but by virtue of having been on earth longer).  in other words, everything else being equal (to reiterate, within the age range described above), the older student gets the job every time.

vercingetorix

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #22 on: October 04, 2008, 03:43:45 PM »
  You are often dealing with similar things (spouse, young kids, purchasing a home, etc.)

 :D

Yeah bringing that up as a thirty-something woman would go over great.


i sense a touch of sarcasm here archival.  google "university of wisconsin mom gets SCOTUS clerkship".  being a parent when partners making hiring decisions are parents can absolutely translate into a huge advantage.  at the very least you have a significant point in common.

archival

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #23 on: October 04, 2008, 04:19:37 PM »
i sense a touch of sarcasm here archival.  google "university of wisconsin mom gets SCOTUS clerkship".  being a parent when partners making hiring decisions are parents can absolutely translate into a huge advantage.  at the very least you have a significant point in common.

Are you seriously arguing that partners in large law firms generally view it as an advantage when a woman has young children?  That people making hiring decisions would generally be impressed by a woman who mentioned her young children in an interview?  I'm not talking about corner cases like your Wisconsin grad, but generalities.
But how do you deal with someone who rejects your broad moral principles?
I kill them.

vercingetorix

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2008, 06:20:26 PM »
i sense a touch of sarcasm here archival.  google "university of wisconsin mom gets SCOTUS clerkship".  being a parent when partners making hiring decisions are parents can absolutely translate into a huge advantage.  at the very least you have a significant point in common.

Are you seriously arguing that partners in large law firms generally view it as an advantage when a woman has young children?  That people making hiring decisions would generally be impressed by a woman who mentioned her young children in an interview?  I'm not talking about corner cases like your Wisconsin grad, but generalities.
look dude, the point at which you are driving is true in theory, completely sexist (as business in general is) but true.  this means that it doesn't really exist in practice.  no business, and i mean not a one, wants women having kids.  there was an interesting and provocative discussion a couple of years ago within the AMA about how disastrous training female physicians was, and particularly in the highly specialized fields.  The reason was clear.  Just as they gain proficiency at their skillset, they drop out for years at a time to have kids.  What this means is that a. they never fully "catch up" to their male counterparts who keep working (or female counterparts who decide not to have children) and that b. the remaining physicians have to pick up their patients.  This is a huge drag on resources (medicine is heavily subsidized) and a drag on morale.  The obvious conclusion however is that you simply cannot choose to hire or fire people based on whether or not they have kids, want kids, may have kid, etc.  Law is no different.  So what happens is that people just accept that it blows for business but you might as well accept that the inevitable will happen.  Mind you I am looking at this purely from the point of view of highest return on an investment.  Clearly society benefits greatly from mothers having children. It is something all employers know that they have to deal with.  Not mentioning the fact that you want or have kids if you are a young woman as if a hiring partner won't somehow assume that you might decide to do that some day or that in fact you might already have kids is asinine.

archival

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #25 on: October 04, 2008, 07:27:17 PM »
So what happens is that people just accept that it blows for business but you might as well accept that the inevitable will happen.  Mind you I am looking at this purely from the point of view of highest return on an investment.  Clearly society benefits greatly from mothers having children. It is something all employers know that they have to deal with.  Not mentioning the fact that you want or have kids if you are a young woman as if a hiring partner won't somehow assume that you might decide to do that some day or that in fact you might already have kids is asinine.

Thank you for clarifying your position.
But how do you deal with someone who rejects your broad moral principles?
I kill them.

thorc954

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #26 on: October 04, 2008, 08:23:42 PM »
I go to a top 20 school and have two non-traditional friends (mid 30's-40's).  One of them excelled (law review, top of the class).  When it came time for interviews, he had his pick.  The other had terrible grades because he did not have enough experience with typing to keep up with everyone else during exams (he improved his typing, got better grades, and has a non-big law job doing exactly what he wants).

I think a key part of the equation is grades.  I think that age can also be an advantage.  You have a lot more on your resume, hopefully, than I do.  Prior experience can help a lot in getting a job.  Also, 30-40 year olds typically have their priorities in order.  I would venture to say, and this may come off as a generalization, but most older students wouldn't go work at big law firms unless they were willing to do the work.  Younger students often come into it with the mind set that they will work, pay off loans, then go do what they want.  Older students often do not have to go this route and will only do it if its what they want to do.  Now, that is just my impression, so people may disagree.

Also, as far as adults having kids, I would imagine it would be a selling point if a female candidate already had kids.  You know then that she wont have to take time off to have them since they are already there.

If it is a career option you want, go for it.  I dont think your age will play a role.  Keep in mind though that the market sucks, grades are unpredictable, and the legal market in Boston is small.  Dont go into it naive. 

Ender Wiggin

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #27 on: October 04, 2008, 10:15:25 PM »
Over 40 non-trad here.

T1 school, top 1/3 grades, significant prior work experience.

Got offers from several V100 firms.

IMHO, school matters lots, grades matter lots, age is not such a big deal so long as you don't give them a reason to make it one.  I learned very quickly it was very important that I let them know that I knew I was asking to be an entry level employee, and that I am totally accepting of that.

Some didn't believe me, but enough did (which is good, because it's true).



smells flamish...

key indicators:
1. poster identifies himself as the exact perfect candidate we would need to solve this little dilemma
2. poster offers some lame insight anyone could have come up with
3. poster insists his post is true...
4. first ever post by someone named "321123"...

smells like shivenstein

Well here:

1. I'm in my 30s, 3L at Michigan. . .
2. I have no insights lame or otherwise, other than that I suspect I did slightly less well in OCI than I would have 8-10 years ago, or even 4-5 years ago, but still had several callbacks. . .
3. Regardless, I got a NYC biglaw gig at the firm which had been my top pick going in. . .
4. Enough posters know me IRL (or a vague facsimile) to know that this is 100% fact. . . 




I thought you were a figment of my imagination!   ;D

Actually, I've been wondering if you even know who I am.  I've said "hi" to you a couple of times in passing at school, but I can't remember if I "revealed" myself at ASW or not. 

LSN


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Jolie Was Here

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #28 on: October 05, 2008, 12:12:11 AM »
Over 40 non-trad here.

T1 school, top 1/3 grades, significant prior work experience.

Got offers from several V100 firms.

IMHO, school matters lots, grades matter lots, age is not such a big deal so long as you don't give them a reason to make it one.  I learned very quickly it was very important that I let them know that I knew I was asking to be an entry level employee, and that I am totally accepting of that.

Some didn't believe me, but enough did (which is good, because it's true).



smells flamish...

key indicators:
1. poster identifies himself as the exact perfect candidate we would need to solve this little dilemma
2. poster offers some lame insight anyone could have come up with
3. poster insists his post is true...
4. first ever post by someone named "321123"...

smells like shivenstein

Well here:

1. I'm in my 30s, 3L at Michigan. . .
2. I have no insights lame or otherwise, other than that I suspect I did slightly less well in OCI than I would have 8-10 years ago, or even 4-5 years ago, but still had several callbacks. . .
3. Regardless, I got a NYC biglaw gig at the firm which had been my top pick going in. . .
4. Enough posters know me IRL (or a vague facsimile) to know that this is 100% fact. . . 




I thought you were a figment of my imagination!   ;D

Actually, I've been wondering if you even know who I am.  I've said "hi" to you a couple of times in passing at school, but I can't remember if I "revealed" myself at ASW or not. 

I don't think you did, or it could be Old Person Memory Loss on my part. ;)  Give me the secret handshake or something next time.
I was referring to your intellectual penis. Which is quite robust.

Jolie is creeping up on me. 

smiley

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Re: Non-traditional students hired by biglaw firms?
« Reply #29 on: October 06, 2008, 11:52:24 AM »
Over 40 non-trad here.

T1 school, top 1/3 grades, significant prior work experience.

Got offers from several V100 firms.

IMHO, school matters lots, grades matter lots, age is not such a big deal so long as you don't give them a reason to make it one.  I learned very quickly it was very important that I let them know that I knew I was asking to be an entry level employee, and that I am totally accepting of that.

Some didn't believe me, but enough did (which is good, because it's true).



smells flamish...

key indicators:
1. poster identifies himself as the exact perfect candidate we would need to solve this little dilemma
2. poster offers some lame insight anyone could have come up with
3. poster insists his post is true...
4. first ever post by someone named "321123"...

smells like shivenstein

Well here:

1. I'm in my 30s, 3L at Michigan. . .
2. I have no insights lame or otherwise, other than that I suspect I did slightly less well in OCI than I would have 8-10 years ago, or even 4-5 years ago, but still had several callbacks. . .
3. Regardless, I got a NYC biglaw gig at the firm which had been my top pick going in. . .
4. Enough posters know me IRL (or a vague facsimile) to know that this is 100% fact. . . 




I thought you were a figment of my imagination!   ;D

Actually, I've been wondering if you even know who I am.  I've said "hi" to you a couple of times in passing at school, but I can't remember if I "revealed" myself at ASW or not. 

I don't think you did, or it could be Old Person Memory Loss on my part. ;)  Give me the secret handshake or something next time.

Secret handshake to Jolie!!! I miss you!!!

On topic, I think our general consensus at Michigan during our 2L OCI season last year was that non-trads did had a slightly more difficult time than our younger counterparts, for whatever reason. Slightly more difficult meaning what, exactly? I'm not sure, but I heard a lot of grumbling from the over-30 crowd. I know I did my fair share of grumbling. Jolie can correct me if I'm wrong on this.