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Career Advisor

Fall Job Search

Published in the July 5, 2011, AdvisorFall is right around the corner. Now is the time to begin preparing for your fall job search, through which you will explore summer and post-graduation professional opportunities.

In planning your job search strategy, remember that most students find their jobs through off-campus interviews. Few employers post notices of openings and even fewer — mostly medium to large employers — interview on law school campuses. Therefore, you should not rely solely on our on-campus interview program or on job notices posted on Symplicity, the UO Law Jobs Database.

If you are spending your summer in a location in which you would like to work in the future, identify employers that interest you there. Find out about those employers’ recruiting programs and plans so that you can submit your materials to them at the appropriate time. If an employer has no plans to hire soon or you will not be in town when it does, you can ask for an informational interview. In addition, reaching out to UO Law alumni in your area can be quite helpful.

In the material that follows, we provide information sorted by employer type to give you some ideas and point you to some resources. We are also available to meet in the office or by phone most of the summer. Please check in with us and let us help you.

Types of Employers to Consider

  • Small to Medium-Size Firms
  • Medium to Large Firms That Don’t Interview on Campus at UO Law
  • Government Agencies
  • Prosecuting Attorney Offices
  • Public Interest Nonprofits (including Public Defender Offices)

Small to Medium Law Firms

Most lawyers work in regional and local law firms, which tend to be smaller than national and international firms. These firms generally don’t interview on campuses; instead, they tend to hire students who, by letter and personal visit, inform the firm of their interest.

Examples of Resources

  • The Internet Resources section of the Career Services web pages at http://www.law.uoregon.edu/career/resources
  • Martindale-Hubbell: http://www.martindale.com (also available via Lexis)
  • Law Firm Directories for small and midsize firms in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Utah, and Arizona. These directories are compiled by career services offices that participate in the Northwest Consortium of Law Schools. These lists are updated each summer. Look for them on MyLaw under the Career Services tab by the end of July.

Medium to Large Law Firms That Don’t Interview on Campus at UO Law

Most medium to large Oregon law firms interview on our campus in the fall. If you want to work at a large private firm outside of Oregon, contact firms in the cities that interest you before the fall recruiting season. Find out about their recruiting timelines and offer to meet with them during the summer if you’re in the area. If you’re not in the area, consider planning a visit in the late summer and offer to meet with the firm at that time.

At the end of this article, you will find a list of employers (mostly larger firms) that are interested in receiving resumes from UO Law students. This list is as of June 28; we anticipate adding more firms during the summer and fall. You can access the most current information in Symplicity by searching for “Resume Collect” in keyword.

Examples of Resources

  • The NALP Directory of Legal Employers, available at http://www.nalpdirectory.com, provides employer resumes and job information for many of the legal employers that interview at law schools
  • To find firms of 15 or more lawyers — most of which hire annually — check Martindale- Hubbell, available at http://www.martindale.com
  • LawStudentJobsOnline (through WestLaw at http://lawschool.westlaw.com; click on Career Focus) includes a Summer Associate Law Firm Directory, as well as other listings. (This has been an excellent resource in the past, but it is currently down for a system upgrade which should be completed by August 1. Check back then.)

Government Agencies

Government agencies generally have limited budgets, so they make few visits to campuses. Most have volunteer positions. A number have paid positions for 2Ls and 3Ls with application deadlines as early as September.

The best resource for government agencies is the Government Honors and Internship Handbook, a comprehensive listing of current federal hiring programs for law students. It also includes a small section on state and local government hiring. Go to http://www.law.arizona.edu/career/honorshandbook.cfm. Contact Career Services for the password or check the password sheet accessible from the Career Services tab in MyLaw. Please do not share the username or password with non-UO-Law students. This online publication is available only to students of schools that subscribe.

If you are interested in a particular agency, check its website for more information. In some cases you may need to call or write to determine the agency’s hiring needs and application procedures or to arrange an interview, but check the Government Honors & Internship Handbook first.

Examples of Resources

Prosecuting Attorney Offices

Known as District Attorneys in some states and Prosecuting Attorneys or State’s Attorneys in others, these offices generally do not interview on campuses. This rule does have a few exceptions; some larger offices usually interview UO Law students on campus in the fall or in Portland in the spring.

The deadline for 2L and 3L applications is usually early September. Notice of these openings will be posted on Symplicity when we receive the relevant information. But if you’re interested, don’t wait for a posting on Symplicity. Check with Career Services or contact the prosecuting attorney’s office on your own.

Examples of Resources

Public Interest Employers and Nonprofit Organizations

Public interest employers include environmental organizations, Public Defender offices, and Legal Aid. The National Association of State Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs) has in the past interviewed through the Main Campus Career Center in the fall. See http://career.uoregon.edu/about/programs/campus-recruiting. Most public interest organizations, however, have budget limitations, so they make few visits to campuses. If you want to do public interest work, write to specific offices and programs that interest you.

Examples of Resources

  • The Public Service Law Network website, a comprehensive database for public interest jobs, requires you to log on and create a username and a password: http://www.pslawnet.org (check with us if you need help)
  • The Equal Justice Works site contains links to a wide range of public interest organizations: http://www.equaljusticeworks.org
  • Idealist.org lists nonprofit internships and post-graduate jobs, law and non-law, ranging from receptionist to executive director, and you are able to set up targeted email alerts.
  • The list of career fairs on our web page includes the Northwest Public Service Career Fair, which features dozens of public service employers: http://www.law.uoregon.edu/career/careerfairs/
  • National Legal Aid & Defender Association has comprehensive links to indigent defense and civil legal services programs around the world: http://www.nlada.org/Links/Links_Home
  • The Legal Aid Services of Oregon (LASO) provides links to all Oregon civil legal services programs: http://www.lawhelp.org/program/1173/index.cfm
  • The Lawhelp.org website provides links to nonprofit legal aid providers in all 50 states.
Employers Accepting Resumes (sorted by deadline) Deadline
Summer Associates, Graham & Dunn PC (Seattle, WA) http://www.grahamdunn.com 8/16
Summer Honors, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of General Counsel (Washington, DC) http://www.epa.gov/ogc/summerhonors.htm 8/25*
Summer & First-Year Associates, Littler Mendelson (San Francisco, CA) http://www.littler.com 9/1
Summer Law Clerks, Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC (Seattle, WA), http://www.cojk.com 9/6
Honors Fellowship, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of General Counsel (Washington, DC) http://www.epa.gov/ogc/fellowship.htm 9/22*
Summer Associates, Lane Powell PC (Portland, OR) http://www.lanepowell.com/ 9/30
Summer Clerkship, Shute Mihaly & Weinberger LLP (San Francisco, CA), Summer Clerkship (Resume Collect) http://www.smwlaw.com/hiring/clerkships 10/1
Fellowship, Shute Mihaly & Weinberger LLP (San Francisco, CA), Fellowship (Resume Collect) http://www.smwlaw.com/hiring/fellowships 11/1

*This deadline is a day before the one posted on the employer’s website to give us time to forward applications as the employer requested.

Reminder: This list is as of June 28. Keep in mind that the firms may be recruiting for many cities, which will be listed in the online posting. Access the most current information in Symplicity by searching for “Resume Collect” in keyword. (Include double quotes.)

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