Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Make your Summer Job Work for You

During my summer internships in law school, I set up several informational interviews with local lawyers practicing or working in areas  in which I was interested.   I met with government attorneys and solo practitioners, as well as, in-house attorneys and big law lawyers.   During both summers, I tried to set up as many as I could to get better idea of what I might like to practice after I graduated. I enjoyed my summer internship, but I also wanted to know what my other options might be.  I recommend that 2Ls and 3Ls use their summer internships and clerkship to network. Ask lawyers in your office for contacts to reach out to, contact Career Services to find out if there are alums practicing in the city you are working in or interested in working or ask family and friends if they know attorneys that would not mind meeting with a ambitious law student!  Before the interview, prepare a list of questions that you want to ask them. Bring that list, but try not to read off of it. It is better to try to have a conversation than to rigidly go through your list of questions.  Ask the person what they like best about their job and how they go to where they are today.   You should also find out what they do on a day to day basis  to see if its something you would to do. At the end of the informational interview, ask them if they know of anyone else that they recommend you contact and if they would mind you using their name when you contact them. Law.com also has a good article on the topic: Use Informational Interviews to Help Your Job Search.

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