February 04, 2006

Jeremy Richey’s Transfer Advice

For those of you thinking you might want to move from one law school to antoher, Jeremy Richey offers an overview of the uncertainties that are part of the law school transfer process.

For more on transferring, be sure to also check out Blawg Wisdom's previous mentions of the topic:

Posted by mowabb at 02:45 PM | TrackBack

August 28, 2005

The Suburban Ecstasies: Like Lambs To...

On a more serious note, public defender Seth Abramson of The Suburban Ecstasies offers more blunt talk about the career options available to law students. This might be especially relevant to 2Ls participating in their on-campus interview program (sometimes known as OCI or FIP) where the options are typically firms, firms, and more firms. Mr. Abramson says:

One comment I keep seeing is, “I like [insert corporate sweatshop here], but they just don't do anything I'm interested in.”

Newsflash, friends: none of the firms do anything you're interested in.

For instance, help people, solve problems, work on behalf of the interests of justice, or, say, do just about anything your parents told you to try and do with your life when you were younger. You know, things that matter.

You probably won't be hearing stuff like this from your career services office, but that doesn't mean it's not worth listening to. Read the whole post for more. [via the Scoplaw]

Posted by mowabb at 05:57 PM

April 25, 2005

2L Scheduling

This is now weeks late, but Armen at De Novo recently sent out a request for advice about planning his 2L schedule and he received some good responses. Definitely worth checking out if you're in the scheduling land of the lost.

Posted by mowabb at 07:50 PM

March 24, 2005

Request: Help with 2L Scheduling

Law student “Stare Decisis” writes:
I'm seeking advice on schedule planning for the second year. Specifically, how to choose classes: based on the bar, based on what you think you want to practice, based on time the class is offered, based on whether there is an exam, based on the professor teaching, etc. I'm curious whether anyone has advice based on what worked or didn't work for them.
If you have any suggestions, please post them in the comments! My two cents: As a rule of thumb, worry less about “bar classes” and instead take classes based on your own interests and the area of law in which you think you'll practice. Your bar review course (if you plan to take one, and who doesn't?) will prepare you for the bar; try to use law school to prepare you for your career in law. I also highly recommend clinics, even and especially as a 2L, because they give you experience you won't get in any other class and provide a nice break from the tone and routine of regular classes. If you wait to try a clinic until your 3rd year you won't have time to build on that experience in law school, but if you do a clinic in your 2nd year and love it, you can make your 3rd year that much more fun and interesting by taking the same clinic again or by taking another clinic, or by working an externship where you use your clinic skills. Talk to current 2Ls and 3Ls at your school! Talk especially to those you know who have gotten jobs you think you'd like or are pursuing careers in areas of law you think you'll want to work in. Ask them about the classes they've taken and the professors that are good in those subjects. Their advice will be more specific and informed than anything you'll get from anyone else, plus they might offer you their outlines, which never hurts. Finally, remember that you are the one who has to do the reading, attend the classes, take the notes, make the outlines, and take the exam or write the paper, so take your own interests seriously. Other people can offer advice and rules of thumb, but you should make your own decisions about what classes to take.

Posted by mowabb at 06:43 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Request: Help with 2L Scheduling

Law student “Stare Decisis” writes:
I'm seeking advice on schedule planning for the second year. Specifically, how to choose classes: based on the bar, based on what you think you want to practice, based on time the class is offered, based on whether there is an exam, based on the professor teaching, etc. I'm curious whether anyone has advice based on what worked or didn't work for them.
If you have any suggestions, please post them in the comments! My two cents: As a rule of thumb, worry less about “bar classes” and instead take classes based on your own interests and the area of law in which you think you'll practice. Your bar review course (if you plan to take one, and who doesn't?) will prepare you for the bar; try to use law school to prepare you for your career in law. I also highly recommend clinics, even and especially as a 2L, because they give you experience you won't get in any other class and provide a nice break from the tone and routine of regular classes. If you wait to try a clinic until your 3rd year you won't have time to build on that experience in law school, but if you do a clinic in your 2nd year and love it, you can make your 3rd year that much more fun and interesting by taking the same clinic again or by taking another clinic, or by working an externship where you use your clinic skills. Talk to current 2Ls and 3Ls at your school! Talk especially to those you know who have gotten jobs you think you'd like or are pursuing careers in areas of law you think you'll want to work in. Ask them about the classes they've taken and the professors that are good in those subjects. Their advice will be more specific and informed than anything you'll get from anyone else, plus they might offer you their outlines, which never hurts. Finally, remember that you are the one who has to do the reading, attend the classes, take the notes, make the outlines, and take the exam or write the paper, so take your own interests seriously. Other people can offer advice and rules of thumb, but you should make your own decisions about what classes to take.

Posted by mowabb at 06:43 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 13, 2005

Summary of the Law Clerk Hiring Plan

Also from JD2B: The Summary of the Law Clerk Hiring Plan for 2005-2006 is up. If you're a 2L hoping for a judicial clerkship when you graduate in 2006, this is for you. Plan to have your applications in the mail on September 6, 2005. See also the FAQ. If you're a 1L or 0L and don't know if you'll ever want to apply for a clerkship, you still might want to file this in the back of your head for future reference. The 2006 dates are up on the above site, as well, for those of you who really like planning ahead.

Posted by mowabb at 10:48 AM | TrackBack

December 05, 2004

Schedule time coming right up

While many a law student is thinking finals these days, others are looking ahead. In that vein, the latest Letter to Wormwood over at Three Years of Hell details some strategies for 1Ls facing their first task for 2L year: picking courses.
The joy of 2L classes is that you get to choose the particular brand of torture you will undergo over the course of the semester. Unlike the 1L year, when all students are squeezed into the same Procrustean bed (with the same Socratic pillows), you can now choose seminars, clinics, or more giant lecture rooms. This gives you a couple of strategic choices.
Possible strategies include Misery in November, Misery in December, and contingency plans in case you find yourself doing journal duty.

Posted by mowabb at 04:04 PM | TrackBack

October 17, 2004

Brilliant Career Advice for 2Ls

Notes from the (Legal) Underground opens the floor for responses to a reader's question about making career choices as a 2L. The comments also link to another NftLU post about Career Opportunities, which you might also find helpful.

Posted by mowabb at 11:30 AM | TrackBack

October 10, 2004

Biting Interviews

Biting Tongue takes a moment to spew 5 observations/bits-of-advice from the middle of the fall 2L interviewing storm. According to BT: 1. Moot Court is good. 2. A mini-career between undergrad and law school is good. 3. Journal is not so good. 4. Taking the patent bar before interviewing is good. 5. Relaxing in interviews is required. BT also recommends future 2L job-seekers schedule one day with no classes. Preferably not friday.

Posted by mowabb at 07:49 PM | TrackBack

September 21, 2004

Firm Summers

For those 2Ls (like Serious Law Student) currently in the midst of interviewing for summer positions at firms, Professor Yin offers his thoughts on his own interview experiences. His important point—"getting one really good offer may be better than getting two or more good offers"—seems to echo a similar point made by Yeoman Lawyer (as noted here the other day).

Posted by mowabb at 06:31 PM | TrackBack

August 25, 2004

Balancing Year Two

Beanie at Screaming Bean kindly praises Blawg Wisdom and offers some excellent advice for making it through 2L, including notes about competitions, OCI, journals, and more. Her bottom line:

My moral of the story is that 2L is a hard year. It's time-consuming, stressful, and at times frustrating as hell. Do what you think you must. Take the courses that stretch your brain. Step above the high school mindset and become your own person. People will respect you for it.

Speaking of high school, Beanie has recently extended the law/high school analogy. It seems to fit all too well...

Posted by mowabb at 10:16 AM | TrackBack

August 24, 2004

OCI Reviews

Every fall, law schools around the country participate in a ritual variously known as OCI (On Campus Interviews), FIP (Fall Interview Program), and etc. This ritual involves students "bidding" for the chance to interview with big firms; you bid by submitting a resume and cover letter. If the firm picks you, they schedule an interview, then come to campus and meet with you. In fact, students all over the country are doing this right now. Fun, right?

Maybe, maybe not. But the point here is that some anonymous someone is trying to make the process a little more predictable via a new blawg; Law Firm OCI Reviews. Here's what it's all about:

The purpose of this Blog is to make information available to law students who are involved in OCI interviews for law firms. The purpose of this blog is not to provide information about the firm in terms of the work experience or compensation and benefits, rather it is to provide information for students concerning the methods used by a particular firm in it's OCI interviews. By inviting readers to send in comments regarding their OCI interviews, I am hoping to be able to build a database aimed at helping future students understand what to expect from a particular firm in the interviewing process. Although I named this site OCI reviews, I will also deal with the flyback/callback process.

So far, the site has no content, but it seems like a good idea. If you have experience with OCI, please send your comments to OCIreviews at gmail dot com. You have to email from an "@school" email address, but the site claims your identity will be protected. [link via Law Sloth]

Posted by mowabb at 10:13 AM | TrackBack

August 16, 2004

Table Manners

Right now, many people are finishing summer internships and/or preparing for fall interviews, and Biting Tongue has just a couple of tips just for you. First, here's a tip for those of you finishing an internship: don't forget to thank those who deserve it. Second, if you're going to be interviewing soon (or even not-so-soon), make sure you know which bread plate is yours.

Posted by mowabb at 12:16 PM | TrackBack

August 08, 2004

More Transfer Tips

In addition to Sua Sponte's transferring FAQ, Schteino.com offers a category of posts tracing his own move from Miami to BC Law. Included is a bit of advice to those just starting law school:

give your law school a chance. Don’t come in to law school saying, in effect, I don’t want to be here; I’d rather be somewhere else.

Posted by mowabb at 11:37 AM | TrackBack

August 07, 2004

Reflections on 2L

SCM at The Menagerie offers a look back at her second year of law school, complete with her own reactions and advice for others. Her tip of tips:

The most important advice for anyone, in whatever stage of schooling: learn how you learn.

Read the full post for more on how she does it, and how you can do it, too.

Posted by mowabb at 10:17 AM | TrackBack

Mixtape Messages:

As a rising 3L, Bekah at Mixtape Marathon has been offering tips about law school for some time now. The hits begin with a series of memos to law professors, mostly about final exams, but also about the content of class:

But the hits don't stop there; they keep on coming with Read Between the Outlines, in which we learn that:

an outline is not a mere study aid. It is nothing less than a physical manifestation of the fundamental malevolence that pervades law school.

Bekah also offers a more sociological perspective on law school with her analysis of the Population of the reading room at study time, and what it feels like to finish your journal write-on/Bluebook competition.

Posted by mowabb at 09:26 AM | TrackBack

August 05, 2004

Beanie on 2L

Beanie of Screaming Bean looks back at her second year of law school and finds it was tough but worthwhile:

At one point I was told I took too many [classes] by administration. Nothing like lighting a fire under me by telling me you shouldn't do something. It in fact was symbolic of the 2L experience, do what feels right...damn the consequences.

Hmm. I might just have to give that a try.

Posted by mowabb at 10:12 PM | TrackBack

August 01, 2004

Transferring FAQ

Sua Sponte is your one-stop-shop for information related to transferring schools after your first year. See her sidebar for all the links. The core of her advice is contained in her transferring FAQ, parts 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Posted by mowabb at 06:42 PM | TrackBack

Course Selection Brain Dump

Sua Sponte offers a list of courses she recommends and which have been recommended to her. Includes many comments from others with their opinions on which courses are important and why.

Posted by mowabb at 06:39 PM | TrackBack

Summer Associate Mega-Post

Another Jeremy, this time the incomparable Jeremy Blachman, recently rounded up many many of his thoughts on what it's like to be a rising 3L summer associate in a big NY law firm. It's all right there in: Are You Interviewing Soon? The Day-In-The-Life-Of-A-Summer-Associate MegaPost. A must-read for anyone planning to try this, and even for those of us who don't think we ever will. Apparently the position comes with free muffins and bagels in the morning, a secretary, a computer w/Internet access and email, a rotation system for giving associates experience in different practice areas, lots of nice lunches, some discussions of what the associates and partners do with their days, and "one or two nights a week, the day finishes with some sort of summer associate event . . . bowling, scavenger hunt, culinary class, Broadway show, concert, etc." As for the work itself, Jeremy says it includes:

Researching on Lexis and Westlaw, writing up summaries of cases or memos or other big stacks of paper, reading through big documents looking for small stuff, helping to organize or arrange or manage big stacks of paper, filling out forms, checking rules and procedures, drafting e-mails, memos, perhaps some contractual language, drafting initial stabs at sections of a brief, sitting in on conference calls, going to hearings, tagging along in court, perhaps sitting in on a client meeting.  That's basically the collection of tasks.

The fact that he appears to have written the entire gargantuan post while "at work" may just tell you all you need to know about his experience as a summer associate. Then again, it may not.

Aside: I really recommend reading Jeremy's blog regularly. You'll be a happier person, and you'll learn a lot, too.

Posted by mowabb at 06:12 PM | TrackBack