I am starting law school in the fall and have a pretty good idea of how I want to use my law degree in the future. I am however curious about which area of law would, I hate to say guarantee, generate the most interest from “Big Firm” employers. What is hot and what is not?
An excellent question, with what might seem an odd answer: most firms could not care less.
First, a firm assumes that anyone it hires is very, very smart, but, essentially, a blank slate.
Second, unless the firm specializes (in which case it is a boutique), it will place its associates where the fit is best, and where the need is immediate. So, unless one has a specific interest, chances are the eventual practice will be nothing like imagined in law school.
Third, many lawyers fall into a practice . . . and quite a few fall into one they never would have guessed.
Finally, it is very, very tricky to choose the "hot" area, because hot areas change by the year and sometimes month, much less by the three year marker. It's much, much more important to think about what you
like, and shoot for that. This is not necessarily a specific area, but might instead be a general approach to law, such as being a bookworm, Type A overachiever, life of the party, etc.
So, while it's fine to keep a clear interest in mind, do be open to a variety of practice possibilities.