The most frustrating thing for any recent grad is the fact that nearly all employers are looking for a candidate with experience. But how do you get experience when you are fresh out of law school? Your quest for a good job after law school should begin when you are still enrolled. You will find that internships will help you in many aspects of your job search. To begin with, they will provide you with the experience that is necessary to be employable after school. Second, it will give you an idea of what areas you would like to practice in (and also an idea of what areas you don't want to). This will help to narrow down the search. And third, by working at an internship or clerkship during your school years, you will begin to establish relationships with professionals. This will build up your references, as well as your networks, which are ESSENTIAL for finding a good job. After all, experts say that 25% of job hunting is WHAT you know, and 75% is WHO you know!
Working Your Way Up
Perhaps you didn't have a chance to intern as a student. It's not too late as a graduate. It may be humbling to work at half the cost (or for nothing!) as a graduate. But consider interning, or taking a lesser job (such as a secretary, etc) at a firm that you absolutely want to work for, but can't quite get hired on to. This is a good way to make connections that you would not otherwise be able to make, and it can give you a real edge because you will be able to learn the ins and outs of that particular firm. This will not only give you invaluable experience, but you will also gain a foot in the door and build contacts, so when an opening comes up, you are sure to be considered!
If you haven't already done so, begin authoring a strong resume and cover letter NOW! These papers may very well be the first impression that firms have of you and your skills. Regardless of what law school you attended, and what experience you have, if you have not marketed yourself well through your resume and cover letter, you may not be selected for an interview. Consider enlisting the help of a professional resume service, such as Attorney Resume. This company specializes in writing resumes and cover letters for attorneys, which allows you to focus on networking and finding places to send your resume!
The adage, "the early bird gets the worm" applies to job hunting. You don't have to wait to see if a firm is looking to hire. Make contact with the firm, and take your resume to them. They may have an opening that they didn't "announce." Or if they don't have an opening at the time, by taking a proactive stance, your resume will be at the top of the pile when a job opens. This shows prospective employers that you are not shy, and that you take initiative - both great qualities in lawyers!
Searching for a job means that you may have to make yourself vulnerable, and the reality may be that you will get turned down several times before you get the big call. However, taking risks can pay off in the end!
If this article has helped you in some way, will you say thanks by sharing it through a share,
link, or an
email to someone you think would appreciate the reference.
David Thompson: Recent Stanford Law School Graduate ''When I was little, my dad and I played a game of debating hard questions when we had long car trips together,'' David Thompson said. ''It was our way of spending quality time and for him to pass the time while driving. I kept playing that game long after the car trips ended and, sure enough, eventually foun ....
Does Law School Rank Determine Success? Each year hopeful college students send thousands of applications nationwide, trying to gain acceptance at top-tier law school. The assumption is that by going to a top law school and doing well, one's career in law is more or less set for success. But does graduating from a top law school really guarantee mo ....
Areas of Law Employment In the next four years it is estimated that the different areas of law employment will continue to grow by about 18% over the next eight years according to the department of labor. One of the contributing factors is a continued increase in population growth. Another reason is legal concerns that continue to r ....
How Does Your Law School Impact Your Legal Career? Dear Lawcrossing,
I am contemplating law school and have been
accepted, thus far, to the Massachusetts School of
Law. Economically and schedulewise it makes sense. My
question is, as far as future employment is concerned, does
it matter what law school you went to? ....