Monday, February 08, 2010

Law Weekly: "Students Challenged in Search for Jobs"

The Law Weekly is doing a series of three articles on the job situation for UVA Law students. We contributed to the first article, which came out this week:
. . . A relatively sizeable proportion of the Class of 2010 have faced an uphill struggle. Many who sought one of the coveted “summer associateships” at a large firm for the summer after their second year were unsuccessful, both through their On-Grounds Interview (OGI) attempts and otherwise. As the Law Weekly reported last year, the depths of the economy were still being discovered during OGIs in 2008, leaving many students grappling for a job and even more frustrated with Career Services.

Of the students who were lucky enough to land associateships, many found that they did not develop into full-time offers, something that had been all but guaranteed in previous years. The result is that a greater number of third-year students than in years past still do not know what they will do when they graduate in less than four months.

Read More.

EDIT: Dean Donovan also discussed the article in the password protected Firm Footing blog, which is accessible via email sent to students.

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is a nice piece of reporting. By discussing these issues in a public forum, you're providing a real service to this community.

Anonymous said...

Might I suggest another poll to gauge numbers of 2Ls still looking and 3Ls staring into a black hole? It might 1) comforting to know that you're not alone or 2) devastating to know that you are, but either way, you know.

Anonymous said...

I'm an unemployed 3L, above the median but no better.

I'm slowly becoming accustomed to the reality that I won't be practicing law in the short-term future.

Due to the crushing debt I've incurred here, it's economically impossible for me to work at a small firm or hang out a shingle.

And, given a series of no-offers by firms in a market to which I have ironclad ties, it's apparently impossible for me to land anything better ITE.

A government job would seem the obvious alternative, but I've found Yared Getachew's quote from the article to be depressingly accurate. There's a hiring freeze in pretty much every state department in the state where I've applied to take the bar. And DAs and public defenders' offices aren't exactly blown away by a resume that doesn't include any non-firm experience.

My options seem to be living with my parents while praying for something to turn up, or qualifying for IBR by teaching high school somewhere.

Is anyone else similarly screwed?

Anonymous said...

8:16 - I'm a 2L with the same GPA and same dismal job prospects. The only difference is that I would LOVE to teach high school, and can't get out of law soon enough.

Does LBR apply to non-legal jobs? What if I taught some sort of bogus "law" class in high school?

Anonymous said...

10:49--"Public schools and colleges" are expressly included in IBR.

http://www.ibrinfo.org/what.vp.html

So, it looks like it doesn't matter what you teach, as long as it's at a public school.

Anonymous said...

You should cover Dean Donovan's comments on his new blog. He responds directly to the article.

Anonymous said...

url for donovan's blog?

Anonymous said...

8:05: it was in an email from career services, and is password protected but the UN/PW are in the email.

http://uvalaw.typepad.com/firmfooting

(username / password not posted for obvious reasons, like I said, you have an email if you're a UVA student)

Rule 12 (f) said...

I saw that - the reason I didn't post it is that it is not publicly available. People should - by all means - check it out.

Anonymous said...

Totally understandable. Still, my guess is as a password protected blog buried in one of the 11,000 emails we get from UVA a lot of people missed it. I'd suggest you at least mention it in the OP, to help spread the word?

Rule 12 (f) said...

OK, sure.

Anonymous said...

1L here. I'm trying to decide if I should be scared shitless or if things will be "better" when we go through OGI.

I'm not optimistic (my grades = top 20-25%).

Anonymous said...

Dean Donovan basically criticizes the article's tone without taking substantive issue with anything in it.

Anonymous said...

I aggree with 12:12, stay strong and carry on only goes so far.

Anonymous said...

"Screwed" 3L whose only hope now is to teach high school... really? No other alternative legal jobs out there? E.g. any organizations (non-government) with work similar to what you may have done at a firm?

It does seem weird to spend all this money on law school and then do a teaching job you could have done with one year of grad. (Although teaching those kids is a noble profession and you may arguably touch more lives than as a corporate lawyer...)

I'm sorry, man!! I really hope it pans out!

Anonymous said...

12:12 and 12:44--And take comfort in the fact that things were rough for Thomas Jefferson, too.

Anonymous said...

Thanks 7:53. That made me feel a lot better.

* kills self *

Anonymous said...

How were things rough for TJ? If I recall things were pretty sweet for him.

8:16, I'd rather work for a firm too, and I have no idea how to go about hanging my own shingle, but I think their is some serious creative destruction going on right now and the industry economic model is changing so much that being entreprenurial is the credited approach for a lot of us. The olds are not going to let us in, we have to take their business from them. I'm not saying I can do it or that I even know how to go about trying, but I don't think we have a choice here.

Anonymous said...

uva should steal this 0L from Michigan too

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/09/us/09bar.html?em

Anonymous said...

9:01-Donovan analogized current job-seekers to the young Thomas Jefferson in his response to the subject article.

Anonymous said...

9:20am Anonymous - Here's my advice.

Your grades, if you maintain them for the second semester are good enough to get you an offer anywhere. That is, you won't be locked out of anything with a GPA around 3.5 or 3.6. However, not being locked out obviously isn't enough.

Wherever you go this summer start making connections at the firms you'd like to work for next summer. Keep apprised of any networking events the firms may host. The most important thing you can do, I think, is to take the initiative now and develop a story as to why you'll be a great fit at the firms you're interested in.

I was barely top 1/3rd, had just 13 interviews but had four callbacks and two offers, one of which I accepted before hearing from one of the other two callback firms. I'm sure I got the offers because I really understood the culture of the firms, the work they did, and why I'd be a good fit.

Gone are the days where firms are competing with each other for you. You can make the OGI process work for you, but not without putting a lot of work into it.

Anonymous said...

you sound like a cool guy

Anonymous said...

cool story bro