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Author Topic: taking a year off before LS - get a job?  (Read 1426 times)

XYF

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taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« on: November 19, 2007, 05:16:26 AM »
I'm probably going to take a year off before I go to law school, but am unsure as to what exactly I am to do during this time. I think I'll work but there's a big problem - any decent job seems to require that I stay for longer for one year. (That is, employers will prefer to hire someone who would stay longer so they'd lose less money trying to train them.) So everyone-
1. what are some good jobs to consider? (Some criteria: I'd prefer not to be a paralegal and though I would very much like to go abroad, I don't want to teach English. I am planning on transactional biglaw, with a transfer to Asia sometime down the line.)
2. should i conceal to potential employers that i intend to bail a year later for law school?

Now Peace Corps would be awesome if they didn't force me to take 2.5 yrs off...

JMFM2011

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2007, 07:42:28 AM »
I'm probably going to take a year off before I go to law school, but am unsure as to what exactly I am to do during this time. I think I'll work but there's a big problem - any decent job seems to require that I stay for longer for one year. (That is, employers will prefer to hire someone who would stay longer so they'd lose less money trying to train them.) So everyone-
1. what are some good jobs to consider? (Some criteria: I'd prefer not to be a paralegal and though I would very much like to go abroad, I don't want to teach English. I am planning on transactional biglaw, with a transfer to Asia sometime down the line.)
2. should i conceal to potential employers that i intend to bail a year later for law school?

Now Peace Corps would be awesome if they didn't force me to take 2.5 yrs off...

I took a full time job in a law firm suspecting that I would be leaving in a year.  I didn't tell them up front.  A lot of things could have happened (and still could happen) to keep my LS plans from going through, so I didn't see any reason to tell them that I MIGHT be leaving. 

What's your degree in?  I'm sure there are a ton of options for jobs you could find.

rsr28

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2007, 09:56:33 AM »
I don't think you need to tell them.  I am getting a job for 5-7 months before I start law school, and I have already completed all my applications, etc. so I felt obligated to tell them because a) I know I will only be there 6 months (which is substantially less than a year) and b) I am so far along in the process that very few things could derail me at this point.

So, after speaking with some professors about it, I went about my job search "ethically" and was upfront about things (actually, I had some interview where I didn't say anything, but I never would have seriously considered those positions).  I've ended up with a decent-paying job, but without benefits.  However, I negotiated my salary to a level that cancels out the cost of COBRA benefits.

I am Penny Lane

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2007, 10:05:31 AM »
2. should i conceal to potential employers that i intend to bail a year later for law school?

I think you should at the very least HINT at it. "I am considering applying to law school."

I was 100% up front about my intention to go to law school and my month long trip to Europe (that started 3 weeks after I started my job) and they hired me anyway! I also feel like I got some good karma points for being upfront. They really do have a right (and a reason) not to hire you if they want someone long term... I would just let them know what is on your mind.
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MHLM

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2007, 10:28:19 AM »
I'm kind of in this boat too...since graduating in May, I had a temporary position that lasted through last month. Now, I need to find a job until I start school again...not sure whether to mention my future plans in the cover letter or just wait to see if I get an interview first...? I feel kind of guilty implying that I could commit to a salaried position when I would be there less than a year most likely..not quite sure how to go about this.

I am Penny Lane

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2007, 10:38:01 AM »
I'm kind of in this boat too...since graduating in May, I had a temporary position that lasted through last month. Now, I need to find a job until I start school again...not sure whether to mention my future plans in the cover letter or just wait to see if I get an interview first...? I feel kind of guilty implying that I could commit to a salaried position when I would be there less than a year most likely..not quite sure how to go about this.

I'd keep it out of the cover letter, unless you are applying for a position at a law office or a similar position. But I would mention it in the interview.
LSN

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I am Penny Lane

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2007, 11:34:28 AM »
Which is why if you say "I am considering law school" will work either way. I just think not disclosing that is a bit of bad karma.
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vap

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2007, 12:17:12 PM »
No need to disclose upfront.

However, if you are asked one of those "where do you see yourself X years from now," then be candid with your answer.

Additionally, if you are applying to a job primarily because you think it will help you with your later career as an attorney, be candid with your response to "why are you interested in this job."  Of course, you can give a general answer to this question as well.

Try to put in at least a year at the job.  Anything less might hurt you in future job interviews.

Do NOT apply to a job that requests a minimum time commitment if you plan to not meet that commitment.

Another piece of advice:  delay telling co-workers until April/May of the year before you enroll unless your departure will seriously conflict with a long-term project.  Disclosing too early might lessen your involvement with interesting projects.

XYF

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2007, 10:11:03 PM »
What about Americorps?

I've looked at it. I really don't want to teach, and if I had to, I'd rather teach foreigners than inner city kids in America (easier to control, get to experience life abroad, etc). NCCC sounds semi-interesting, but it looks like a lot of manual labor. And I might want to do some long-term travel, so I'm afraid of the 10 month commitment.

Anyone have general ideas on what to do?

blupblup

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Re: taking a year off before LS - get a job?
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2007, 04:11:54 AM »
What about Americorps?

I've looked at it. I really don't want to teach, and if I had to, I'd rather teach foreigners than inner city kids in America (easier to control, get to experience life abroad, etc). NCCC sounds semi-interesting, but it looks like a lot of manual labor. And I might want to do some long-term travel, so I'm afraid of the 10 month commitment.

Anyone have general ideas on what to do?

Americorps is different from Teach for America. There are many different things you can do through Americorps, depending on your skills. You should look into it. But the pay isn't great, if that's an issue.

I'm not sure what your background is and what you're really interested in, but I was in the same position not too long ago (I just graduated this past May). I was applying for some non-profit (some legal non-profits) jobs,  some paralegal jobs, and some random sounds-interesting jobs. I was very honest with what I was planning to do (going to law school in a year or two). I felt it was relevant and showed I had direction, and also showed my interest in the job in the first place. On the other hand, I showed flexibility and in reality, I was flexible. For the right job, I would stay 2 years, and that's really the most they're going to ask of a recent grad. I'm now working at a start-up which is a lot of fun (one of the sounds-interesting jobs), and the circumstances might be different since it's a start-up and who knows if the company will be around in a year, but they're all really supportive and aware that I am applying to law schools right now.