Summer associate jobs are a natural first step for law school students to "try out" different law firms. These positions are at the bottom of the law firm's management hierarchy and are intended for law school students who have completed at least two years of law school.
This is an intern position and because the associates are still in law school, they have not passed the bar exam in their state yet. These employees are often called summer clerks or law clerks.
This is a highly competitive position and while internships may be unpaid in smaller firms, there is often a salary associated with a position in a larger firm. Many firms use this avenue as a way to also try out potential employees, and upon a successful summer, may offer full time employment upon graduation. In fact, there are firms that use this intern program as their primary recruiting tool for new hires.
Because this is such a highly competitive arena, a summer associate needs to understand that every movement over the summer will be critiqued and analyzed by other attorneys. In fact, summer associates should look at the summer months as an extended interview. Treat every event, every encounter as a part of that long term interview.
It's important to find a mentor in the law firm. While it's important to get to know everybody, it's equally advisable to find someone that can show you the ropes in the firm. This is a great way to get to know the culture of the firm. In addition, summer clerks should have someone proofread their work and provide guidance. The mentor - and others - can provide invaluable feedback. A smart summer associate will digest all forms of feedback, criticism and compliment alike, and redirect his or her actions in accordance with this feedback.
Over the summer, a competent law clerk will notate every rule and ensure that no corners are cut. This may be as simple as making sure to adhere to the dress code or not sneaking out five minutes early before the weekend.
As the economy struggles to recover from the recession, law firms may still be cutting back on summer intern jobs. However, there are still options available for this invaluable job experience.
Law Firm, 14hit(s) 2015 Summer Associate
The candidate should be law students with skills that will enhance the firm's goals and credo. 2Ls with good academic record with involvement in journals and/or moot court, work and leadership experience, law school activities, community involvement. Will participate in deposi...
Law Firm, 3hit(s) 2015 Summer Associate
The candidate will work with Food and Drug practice; the other student will work with Environmental practice. Strong academic credentials and excellent analytical, writing and interpersonal skills are required. Law Review/Journal experience and a science background are a plus....
Law Firm, 168hit(s) Summer Associates
The program is based on the split-summer model. The firm prefers a six-week summer commitment. Will have the opportunity to explore all areas of practice, which spans the spectrum of intellectual property law.
Law Firm, 4hit(s) Summer Associate, 2015
The candidate will work on complex matters in a professional office environment. Top 20% of class and excellent writing skills are required, as well as a strong interest in commercial litigation and health law.
Law Firm, 160hit(s) Summer Program
The firm offers summer program for second-year law students that provides a challenging and realistic law firm experience. The program gives students a chance to interact with associates and partners to gain an understanding of the firm's culture. Summer clerks work on varied, intere...
Law Firm, 81hit(s) Summer Associate Program
The candidate should preferably be in the Top third of the law school class. Both undergraduate and law school academic achievements are considered. Relevant undergraduate disciplines, the overall law school curricula, participation in extracurricular activities and especia...
There are essentially three phases to a lawyer's career, one of which may or may not ever be realized. They are: (1) the Grinder, (2) the Minder, and (3) the Finder and Binder. The Grinder is the first- through third-year attorney who grinds out legal product—of a sufficient quality and in a billable quantity—to keep the partner and firm happy. Some time around the fourth year (give or take a year), management of other attorneys and a bit of client contact usually come into play. The attorney who is more than seven years out of school and has no clients is the Senior Minder, the most precarious position one can have in the profession. Why? If firm profits ever take a dive, these are the first people fired (in most cases, eventually replaced by less expensive associates). Finally, if knowledge, talent, training, and support from the firm are present, an attorney may become a Finder and Binder, also known as a Rainmaker.
My summer associate experience was just about ideal. I knew I wanted to practice California water law, so I did my homework about firms that had good water practices. I interviewed with those firms (there was only one that really stood out) and got the summer position I wanted. I worked hard over the summer and, at the end of the program, received a job offer. I have been with the same firm, Nossaman, LLP, for over three years now. Because of my focused search, I am able to practice water law. Plus, I have been elected as the associate representative on the firm's Executive Committee. And, a mere four years after I sat in front of my first Nossaman attorney during my on-campus interview, I now find myself on the other side of the equation, interviewing bright and hopeful law students for our summer associate program.