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Tools for Landing the Job
- Before school begins, read the Official Guide to Legal Specialties and take the Strengthsfinder assessment.
- Concentrate on your studies and focus on getting used to law school.
- Join and take leadership roles in student groups that are related to your career interests.
- Get to know your fellow students.
- Register for the Mock Interview Program.
- If interested in public interest jobs, register as a user at psjd.org and consider attending the Equal Justice Works Career Conference in October.
- Attend 1L Academy, Jump Start Week, and other Career Services programs, and get to know the Career Services staff.
- Consider applying for the Summer in Oxford Program, the Washington D.C. Summer Program or other study-abroad programs to obtain law school credit.
- Prepare a legal resume and cover letter.
- After November 1, but preferably before Thanksgiving break, meet with your career advisor to have you resume and cover letter reviewed and gain access to Symplicity.
- After November, 1, become familiar with Symplicity and check frequently for announcements.
- On December 1 or soon thereafter, send resumes to large or medium sized firms of interest. For information about researching firms, click here.
- On December 1 or soon thereafter, send resumes to federal government employers. For information about researching government employers, click here.
- If interested in government jobs, ask Career Services for court directories, information about court externships, the Federal Government Honors Program and other opportunities.
- Study for final exams.
- Develop a list of networking contacts.
- Schedule informational interviews and meet with one or two contacts during break.
- Map out your preferred 1L summer plan and a back-up summer plan.
Early Spring Semester
- Check Symplicity announcements and on-line job postings regularly.
- Participate in Spring On-Campus Interviews (OCI) and Opportunity Forum Interviews.
- Attend the Opportunity Forum Table Talk to meet government and public interest employers and apply for summer positions.
- Apply for the judicial externship program.
- Apply for the government and non-profit externship program.
- Attend Career Service Programs on Off-Campus Job Fairs.
- Attend other Career Services presentations and programs sponsored by employers.
- Talk to professors about research assistant positions for the upcoming summer.
- Brainstorm with Career Services about 1L job opportunities and strategies.
- Watch for deadlines regarding Foreign Language Area Study fellowships.
- Apply for financial aid/submit your FAFSA by the priority deadlines.
- Apply for PILF Fellowship funding if you plan to volunteer for a public interest employer.
- Request reciprocity through Career Services if you are looking for out-of-state employment, so you can use other law schools' Career Services offices over Spring Break.
- Follow up with employers to whom you have sent applications and let them know you are free to interview over break.
- Schedule a few informational interviews to learn about your preferred practice areas of law and to meet with one or two alumni in your preferred city.
Late Spring Semester
- Continue to apply for positions.
- Check Symplicity often for late-breaking job opportunities.
- Maintain a current resume on Symplicity.
- Consider volunteering and taking for-credit summer classes.
- Study for final exams.
- Participate in the law journal writing competitions.
- Update your resume on Symplicity to include your summer work experience and your spring semester grades, and have your career advisor review your updated materials.
- Research all bar exam deadlines in the states where you are considering taking the bar.
- Map out your preferred plan for the summer following your 2L year and a back-up plan.
- Apply on Symplicity for Early and Regular Fall OCI positions for your second summer. The deadlines are typically in mid-July and late August, respectively.
- Research and target small and medium-sized firms which do not participate in OCI. Hiring timelines are typically later for these employers, but begin networking.
- If you are seeking an out-of-state position, review job fairs and resume collections on Symplicity. Also apply for opportunities through the National Law School Consortium (NLSC) programs. Applications are typically due in mid-July.
- Send letters to large law firms that are not participating in OCI between August 1 and August 15.
- Apply for the Department of Justice Honors Attorney Program. Deadlines are usually in August.
- Apply for for the Federal Government Honors Programs.