Tuesday, September 10, 2013

How Can Professors Help Your Job Search?




Read this terrific article by Rutgers-Camden Law Professor Sarah Ricks on how to engage with faculty members to help your job search.  Don't neglect the resources that professors have to offer.  Follow the recommendations laid out by Professor Ricks to add more depth to your job search.


Recent Grads: Use Pro Bono Opportunities to Develop Skills

If you have recently graduated from Rutgers Law School and are awaiting your PA Bar results, use the time to gain skills, make connections and bank some CLE credits!  Philadelphia VIP is hosting a Mortgage Foreclosure training on September 27th.

The Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Program, instituted in April 2008 by the
Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, has provided thousands of homeowners an opportunity
to negotiate face to face with lenders’ representatives to save their homes from foreclosure.

The Honorable Annette M. Rizzo and Philadelphia VIP are asking attorneys to volunteer for the
Diversion Program on Thursdays in City Hall. Philadelphia VIP administers the pro bono legal
assistance component of the Diversion Program, providing training and ongoing support to attorneys
who wish to contribute their time to this important effort. Since the inception of the program in June
2008, over 600 attorneys have been trained. Those attorneys have helped over 1,000 Philadelphians
remain in their homes.

The mortgage foreclosure diversion program needs the investment of many pro bono attorneys to
help clients negotiate affordable loan modifications, payment arrangements, or otherwise resolve
clients’ mortgage foreclosure cases. Volunteer attorneys are asked to put their negotiation skills to
work; litigating the mortgage foreclosure case is not expected of volunteers. Volunteers need NO
experience in mortgage foreclosure law to participate.

Come to this training to get involved:
Date: Friday, September 27, 2013, 8:30am - 12:00pm
8:30am - Breakfast & Registration
9:00am – Training Begins
Location: PECO/Exelon
2301 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19101 **Picture ID required for entrance to building

The Honorable Annette M. Rizzo will deliver remarks
Volunteers will receive a total of 3 free substantive CLE credits in exchange for providing ongoing
representation for two different clients in the Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Program or for
representing three clients as a temporary solution or emergency volunteer.

Please register at here.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

FAQs: State Trial Clerkship Applications

When Do I Apply?
NJ & DE State Trial: If you want the Career Planning Office to mail your applications, deliver ASSEMBLED applications to the Career Planning Office during the following hours:

June 3, 4, 6, 8:30am-6:30pm
June 5, 8:30am-7:30pm
June 7, 8:30 am-4:00pm
June 10, 8:30am -6:30pm 

Assembled means that you have placed your application materials for each judge (cover letter, resume, unofficial transcript, writing sample, and list of references) in individual 9x12 envelopes, and affixed a printed label on the front of the envelope with the judge’s name and court in the following format:
The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court General, Court Specific

Or

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court Specific

Pre-sort your NJ applications alphabetically by vicinage and then alphabetically by judge within each vicinage. The Career Planning Office will bundle and mail these applications so that they will arrive in chambers by June 28th. 
Note: Delaware Chancery Court applications should be sent by you directly to judges ASAP.

PA State: The PA system is not uniform and not every judge hires a law clerk. Many PA judges hire on an as needed basis when vacancies arise.  For information on the hiring practices of Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas judges, check the Philly CCP Hiring Practices spreadsheet in your Symplicity account under Resources.

Other States: Every state has its own set of procedures and some state judges do not hire law clerks. Check out the Guide to State Judicial Clerkships on the Career Planning website for details on other states.

How Do I know Who is Hiring?
NJ: All NJ state judges are hiring (every judge hires a new clerk every year for a 1 year term).

PA: The PA system is not uniform and not every judge hires a law clerk. Many PA judges hire on an as needed basis when vacancies arise and typically post openings on court websites and through law school career planning offices.  For information on the hiring practices of Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas judges, check the Philly Judges Hiring Needs spreadsheet in your Symplicity account under Resources.

Other States: Every state has its own set of procedures and some state judges do not hire law clerks. Check out the Guide to State Judicial Clerkships on the Career Planning website for details on other states.

What Application Materials Do I Need to Apply?
To apply to NJ state trial clerkships, you will need a resume, cover letter, unofficial law school transcript, list of references and writing sample. Check out the Guide to State Judicial Clerkships on the Career Planning website for details on other states.

How Do I Apply?
Paper applications via mail. See “When Do I Apply” for details on mailing your applications through the Career Planning Office. 

How Do I Get Contact Information for Judges?
Your Symplicity account has contact info for NJ, PA, and DE trial judges. You can download spreadsheets of contact info under Clerkships. Just login, click on Clerkships and fill out the search form. You can download pre-made spreadsheets for NJ state trial judges. To access the pre-made spreadsheets, login to Simplicity, click on Resources, then do a keyword search for “judges.”

After I Have Downloaded a Spreadsheet, What Do I Do With it?
You will use these spreadsheets to mail merge your cover letters and to create labels for any applications that you are mailing through the Career Planning Office.   Use the following format for your labels:
The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court General, Court Specific

Or

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court Specific

Place a label on each application that you are mailing through the Career Planning office (on the front of each 9 x 12 envelope).

What’s a Mail Merge?
A mail merge is a time-saving process by which you merge a document, like a cover letter, with a data source, like an excel spreadsheet of names and addresses. In this case, the result is individual cover letters addressed to each person in the spreadsheet. You can use this process for your cover letter. You can use the mail merge template on the website to see how to set up a mail merge.

Where Can I get More Information?
On the Career Planning website. See State Trial Clerkship Application Instructions.

FAQs: State Appellate & Federal Clerkship Applications

When Do I Apply?
If you want the Career Planning Office to mail your applications:
1)      Submit to the Career Planning Office the following, by this Friday, May 24th:
a.      your spreadsheet of judges (emailed to lor@camlaw.rutgers.edu)
b.      your labels (in the following format):
The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court General, Court Specific

Or

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court Specific

2)      Deliver ASSEMBLED applications to the Career Planning Office during the following hours:

June 17, 18 & 20, 8:30 am-6:30pm
June 19, 8:30am – 7:30pm
Saturday, June 22, 11:00 am - 2:00 pm, BY SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT ONLY 
(contact the career planning office to make arrangements)

Assembled means that you have placed your application materials in each of your red folders (in the right inside pocket of each folder in the following order: cover letter on top, then resume, unofficial transcripts, and writing sample) and affixed a printed label on the front right hand top corner of the folder with the judge’s name and court in the following format:

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court General, Court Specific

Or

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court Specific

When you bring in your assembled applications, we will provide you with a sealed envelope of LORs for each of your applications.  You will then insert your LORs in the left inside pocket of your folders and sort your applications into the appropriate piles.  Be prepared to spend time doing this!  Paper applications will be delivered to the court on Friday, June 28th (per the federal law clerk hiring plan).

You should complete any
OSCAR applications (federal only) by June 7th. Recommenders cannot upload their letters until you at least create a partial application for each judge you plan to apply to (i.e., at least upload a resume for each judge you will apply to and select your recommenders for those particular judges). OSCAR will hold your apps and release them on June 28th.

How Do I know Who is Hiring?
Federal: Check OSCAR for openings. Many do list information about their clerkship openings, but check back frequently, since some judges may update their clerkship information late in the season.  Greyed-out judges are judges for which OSCAR has no information and do not participate in OSCAR at all.  Students may wish to apply to the greyed-out judges via paper applications.  For federal judges in NJ, NY, DE, or PA, check the “Hiring Practices Survey” in your Symplicity account under Resources.  

State Appellate:
NJ - All NJ state judges are hiring (every judge hires a new clerk every year for a 1 year term).

PA - The PA system is not uniform and not every judge hires a law clerk. Many PA judges hire on an as needed basis when vacancies arise and typically post openings on court websites and through law school career planning offices.

Other States - Every state has its own set of procedures and some state judges do not hire law clerks. Check out the Guide to State Judicial Clerkships on the Career Planning
website for details on other states.

What Application Materials Do I Need to Apply?
Resume, cover letter, 2 – 3 letters of recommendation, writing sample, unofficial transcripts.

How Do I Apply?
Federal: Many federal judges accept applications through OSCAR. Federal judges who do not participate in OSCAR can be sent hard copy/paper applications.  See “When Do I Apply” for details on mailing your paper applications through the Career Planning Office. 

State Appellate/Supreme Court: Paper applications via mail.  See “When Do I Apply” for details on mailing your applications through the Career Planning Office. 

How Do I Get Contact Information for Judges?
Your Symplicity account has contact info for Federal and NJ, PA, and DE trial and appellate judges. You can download spreadsheets of contact info under Clerkships. Just login, click on Clerkships and fill out the search form. You can download pre-made spreadsheets for NJ state trial, appellate division and supreme court judges, as well as for NJ, NY, PA and DE federal judges. To access the pre-made spreadsheets, login to Simplicity, click on Resources, then do a keyword search for “judges.”

After I Have Downloaded a Spreadsheet, What Do I Do With it?
You will use these spreadsheets to mail merge your cover letters for paper applications and to create labels for any applications that you are mailing through the Career Planning Office.   Use the following format for your labels:
The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court General, Court Specific

Or

The Honorable FirstName LastName
Court Specific

Place a label on the top right hand corner of each red folder.

You must email your spreadsheet of judges to the Career Planning Office by MAY 24th.  You must also supply a set of labels to the Career Planning Office with the name of the judge and the court for use in preparing your LORs by May 24th.

What’s a Mail Merge?
A mail merge is a time-saving process by which you merge a document, like a cover letter, with a data source, like an excel spreadsheet of names and addresses. In this case, the result is individual cover letters addressed to each person in the spreadsheet. You can use this process for your cover letter and we will use it for your LORs. (If you have outside recommenders, no need to have them do a mail merge. Just ask them for one letter with the salutation “Your Honor” which they should email to lor@camlaw.rutges.edu with the subject “Letter of Recommendation for Student Name.” A signed PDF copy is preferred, but an unsigned word document is acceptable.) 
You can use the mail merge template on the website to see how to set up a mail merge.

What Are the Red Rutgers Folders for? How do I Get my Hands on Them?
The red folders are for federal and state appellate applications and are available in the Career Planning Office.  You can drop by and pick-up up to 75 folders. Please know how many state appellate and federal judges you plan to apply to via paper applications before you come in to pick-up folders.

How Will My Letters of Recommendation get Uploaded onto OSCAR/included with Apps that Career Planning Mails?
Once the letter is written, we will mail merge it with your spreadsheet, place the letter in an envelope for each judge and affix the labels (with the judge’s name/court) you supply on each envelope. Outside recommenders should write one “To Whom it May Concern” (or “Your Honor”) letter and email the signed version to lor@camlaw.rutgers.edu and put “Letter of Recommendation for Student Name” in the subject line of the email.  We will also upload LORs onto OSCAR.

Where Can I get More Information?
On the Career Planning website. See the Federal and State Appellate/Supreme Court Clerkship Application Instructions.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Fall Recruiting: Fall OCI


It may seem early to start thinking about the fall interviewing season, but fall interviews mean summer application deadlines. Specifically, the Fall On Campus Recruiting Program (Fall OCI) has July application deadlines, and other late summer deadlines. Please read through the FAQs in this blog post, paying particular attention to the summer deadlines/application periods. 

As you read through the FAQs, there are a few things we would like everyone to keep in mind. First, large law firms are the main participants in Fall OCI, with some government agencies and a few corporations participating as well. Second, because Fall OCI is such a visible program, students tend to think it’s the only way to get a job. Au contraire, the vast majority of students secure jobs through means other than Fall OCI (e.g., Professional Relationships, Direct Targeted Applications and Advertised Openings), and most do so in the spring semester.  For that reason, “Job Search Methods for Rising 2Ls & 3Ls” is a must read.   It outlines a job search plan for an effective job search.  You should also review the Timing of Applications by Employer Type chart.  However, you are strongly encouraged to meet with your counselor to discuss a job search strategy that works best for your individual circumstances

Fall Recruiting FAQs:


What is Fall OCI?

OCI stands for On Campus Interviews. The Fall On Campus Interview Program (Fall OCI) is an interview program in which large (and some mid-sized) law firms, corporations and government agencies interview 2L students for summer and, in some cases, 3Ls students for post graduate positions. Most interviews take place on campus in the Career Planning Office.

Which employers participate in Fall OCI?
      
Primarily large law firms, but some government agencies and a few corporations take advantage of Fall OCI, too. Unlike the big firms, smaller firms and public interest organizations hire on an "as needed" basis, typically only a few months (at most) in advance of when the position would actually begin. So for that, and other reasons, smaller firms and public interest agencies usually don’t participate in OCI. You can login to your
Symplicity account now to check out which employers are registered for the program. Once OCI begins, you will only be able to view and apply to employers that are accepting applications from your class year.

What Class Years are employers interested in seeing?

The majority of participating employers are interested in second-year students for summer 2014 positions; however, some employers may also interview third-year students for permanent positions to begin in 2014.

Large firms that hire 2LS for summer positions are actually projecting their need 2 years ahead, since these summer 2L positions can, theoretically, lead to offers of permanent post graduate employment. Because large law firms fill entry level/first year associate positions with summer associates from the previous summer; very few recruit 3Ls for entry level positions. 

Special note for evening students: OCI is attended usually by employers seeking students who will complete either their second or third year of law school by the following spring, and therefore will be eligible for a summer position following their second year, or permanent employment following their third year. This presents some confusion to Evening Program students who have completed one year of law school, but who have not completed their first year coursework or hours to be considered second year law students. Evening Program students who are in their second year of law school (and have not finished their first year coursework) may participate in Fall OCI, if an employer indicates they will accept submissions from 2E students.

NOW IS A GOOD TIME TO MAKE SURE YOUR SYMPLICITY ACCOUNT REFLECTS THE CORRECT CLASS YEAR. To do this:

1. Login to your
Symplicity Account and click on Profile
2. Next, click on Academic Information
3. At the Academic Information screen, if necessary update your Year in School and your Graduation Year/Month. Your Year in School and Graduation Year should reflect your status as of Fall 2013.

When does OCI begin?

The first application period is July 3rd – July 11th.

There are five OCI sessions, each with a different set of employers, though most employers choose to interview during session 1. That means that you must login and apply during each of the five application periods. It’s important that you review the
dates for the all of the sessions. Employers begin interviewing on August 12th.
 
How exactly do I apply?

Through
Symplicity. Once the application period begins, login and click on OCI. The next screen should be the Employers/Bidding tab. Choose a session under the session drop down box (Fall 2013 OCI Session 1 – Fall 2013 OCI Session 5). Click Review or Apply next to the employer’s name. Choose the appropriate application materials from the drop down box(es) on the right of your screen. You must upload any requested application materials before applying to employers (go to Documents, then click Add New and upload your document).

For detailed instructions, click
here.

How many employers may I apply to?

As many as you like. There is no limit.

Does it matter when I apply during the application period?

You may apply anytime during the
application period. However, we suggest that you not wait until the last minute because it is a lot harder fix a technical issue or answer your question at 4:29pm on the last day of the application period.

Symplicity will only let me upload 10 documents; what if I need to upload more?

After you have used a document to apply to an employer (say, a cover letter), you may delete it from your documents and upload a new one. Deleting a document AFTER you have used it to apply to an employer will not affect the application, that is, the document will not be deleted on the employer's side.

What does No Multiple Interviews mean?

Sometimes employers interview for multiple office locations. Those employers may decide that they only want students to be able to interview for one of those locations. So even though candidates may apply for all locations, the employer would only select the candidate to interview for one of those locations.

You should note, however, that when employers register for OCI they sometimes indicate No Multiple Interviews, even though they are only interviewing for one office location. This happens because No Multiple Interviews is the default on the electronic form that employers fill out. In such a case, it is irrelevant and you can ignore this designation.

How do I know if I have been selected for an interview?


Students who have been selected for an interview(s) will receive an email on the first day of the interview sign-up period directing them to login to
Symplicity to sign-up for a time slot. If you have your spam filter set at a high level, this email may end up in your spam folder. However, you can just login to your Symplicity account on the first day of the interview sign-up period, go to OCI and choose the appropriate session to see if you have been selected for an interview(s).

For detailed interview sign-up instructions click
here.

What if I want to apply to an employer that isn’t participating in OCI?

Decisions to participate in OCI are based on various factors that may or may not have to do with the employer’s hiring status. If an employer is not participating in OCI you may apply directly. A good resource for law firm contact information is the
NALP directory of legal employers and Martindale. You can get federal government contact information on the Government Honors & Internship Website which you can access on our webpagePSJD is a good place to look for state government contact information.

Where can I get more information?

The
Fall OCI Information & Instructions document contains complete information on the process and you are strongly encouraged to read it in its entirety. You can research employers on the NALP directory of legal employers which contains specific information with regard to salary, billable hours and other useful information. You should also visit the Fall OCI section of the Career Planning website for other helpful links.  And, as always, you can make an appointment to meet with your counselor.