This year, OUTLaw has made it a mission to be a resource to students. On Wednesday, the organization which seeks to advance the interests of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, made a step in that direction by hosting a job discussion.
"I wanted to provide students with resources I wish I had known," said Dale Noll, 3L and co-president of OUTLaw. During the lunchtime meeting, students and alumni provided a list of tips and techniques on how to land a job, internship or clerkship. Students gave testimonials about how they successfully obtained work as summer associates, jobs through Miami Law's On Campus Interview program and various internships in the judicial system. The presentation also included critical resources such as a list of web sites and pass codes to members-only sites, where opportunities could be located.
However, some students felt the information was too little, too late.
"If I had known this as a 1L, it would have been more valuable," Danielle Brown, 2L, said. Other second- and third-year students echoed her sentiment after the meeting.
Michael Donofrio, OUTLaw's co-president, sees it differently. "Obviously, 1Ls are going to get the most out of it," he said. "Everything is new to them." He added that the general discussions on internships, clerkships and about On Campus Interviews were things students can do throughout their law school careers.
"Our idea was to have a discussion about employment throughout law school and give students strategies as they move forward," Donofrio said.
Students who would like to receive a summary of the meeting complete with details about job tips can submit a request to UMOUTLaw@gmail.com..
Get on the list:
1. Make the most of your time in law school by staying in contact with professors and advisors in the Career Development Office. Stay in contact with those who can regularly update you about opportunities.
2. Keep your job options open. While you may have a clear idea of what type of career you would like to have, professionals suggest that if you keep your options open, your stress will be easier to manage and you will not get desperate during the job hunt. Desperation doesn't you get hired.
3. Get involved in a legal clinic or internship. Many employers are looking for students who have done legal work at some point during their law school career.
4. Become certified as a clinical legal intern (CLI) while in law school. Students who have a CLI are able to speak in front of a judge while under the supervision of an attorney. To learn more about CLI certification contact Hazel Nicholson, clinical placement coordinator.
5. Personalize cover letters. Whether you are looking to apply to a job or internship, it is more professional to address the receiver by name whenever possible. Generic introductions such as "to whom it may concern" may appear as if you really do not care for the job.
6. Always do research on the company that is hiring you. Try to understand the culture and what the company is looking for from their new hire.
7. Be yourself when you are being interviewed. Often, interviewers are looking for someone they can enjoy working with. If you are not comfortable being yourself, others will not be comfortable hiring you.