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Finding a Career after Georgetown Law

Georgetown pulls out all the stops to help students find internships, temporary, on-campus research or admin positions and even permanent jobs in their practice area.
BY Uttara Choudhury |   01-01-2012

Georgetown University Law’s career center is exceptional in helping students find their feet in the world of work.

Georgetown Law Center


Marilyn Tucker, Director of Alumni Career Services and International Internships at Georgetown Law Center says, Georgetown pulls out all the stops to help students find internships, temporary, on-campus research or admin positions and even permanent jobs in their practice area. It also provides lots of timely tools and tips on how to develop interview strategies and learn networking techniques.

As Tucker explains: “Georgetown Law offers its students a vast pool of resources to help them find employment in the practice area of their choice. One such resource is the Early Interview Week (EIW), a week-long on-campus interview program featuring hundreds of firms from around the country. It is not uncommon for one student to attend between 15 and 20 interviews during EIW.”

Tucker talked to Geetanjali Bhushan and Uttara Choudhury in Washington about how she even works with Georgetown alumni to define their goals, develop their job search strategies, research potential employers and find the jobs they want.

Georgetown Law’s Career Center is quite amazing because it assigns each student a counselor who basically acts as a life coach. What are the tools and advice you give students and alumni?

As career counselors, our job is to help students understand why they came to law school and what it is that they are interested in doing. We try to explain that there is not one single path that will take a person to the career of their dreams. For some, the path may be direct, almost automatic. For others, the path will be more convoluted, and they may not have the “perfect job” immediately after graduation, but may be able to pursue it later in their careers. It is our responsibility to help students understand and accept this reality. In addition, we give students networking advice and tips on conducting a successful job search. We also hold mock interviews so that students can practice interviewing with an employer, and we review students’ application documents.

Does a degree from Georgetown guarantee an easy time finding a job? Do most major law firms come to Georgetown to interview on campus?

“Georgetown Law encourages students to pursue their interests, regardless of whether those interests lead to private practice, public service, or academia. The law school provides students with counselors who can help them determine which area of the law would be best suited for them.”

A degree from Georgetown Law does not guarantee a job, nor does it guarantee an easy time finding a permanent position. The ability to quickly secure employment post-graduation often depends on a number of factors, such as the breadth of a particular legal field, or the current national economic situation. Nevertheless, Georgetown Law offers its students a vast pool of resources to help them find employment in the practice area of their choice. One such resource is Early Interview Week (EIW), a week-long on-campus interview program featuring hundreds of firms from around the country. Through an online bidding system, students choose the firms they are interested in and are then assigned interview slots with a certain percentage of those firms. It is not uncommon for one student to attend between 15 and 20 interviews during EIW. For those students more interested in public service careers, Georgetown Law also offers the Government Interview Program (GIP), which takes place on campus every fall. During the program, Georgetown students interview with various government agencies, both at the federal and state level. In addition, there are several off-campus public service career fairs that take place in Washington D.C. throughout the year.

Since you have a sizable job listings database, are listings available for students, recent graduates and experienced alums?

Georgetown Law keeps an updated online database of all the job openings it receives from both internal and external sources. The database, named “Symplicity,” allows students to search for the job listings they qualify for, and to submit their materials to employers online. Job listings in Symplicity are extremely diverse. Some offer temporary, on-campus research or administrative positions. Others offer short-term internships or fellowships. A large number of the job listings offer permanent full-time employment for graduating students and alumni. After graduation, Georgetown Law alumni are permitted to continue using Symplicity to find available job opportunities.

As one of the well regarded US law schools, Georgetown attracts a fairly large number of foreign students. Do foreign students receive financial assistance of any kind or help with student loans?

“Georgetown Law offers its students a vast pool of resources to help them find employment in the practice area of their choice.”

Georgetown Law does not provide grants or scholarships to international students. In addition, foreign students cannot qualify for federal student loans available to U.S. students. As a result, international students attending Georgetown Law are expected to have sufficient funding to finance their entire course of study. International students often obtain funding through personal resources, government or private funding. International students may also qualify for scholarships or fellowships offered by various U.S. and foreign organizations. Some examples are the American Association of University Women and the Taraknath Das Foundation.

When jobs and clerkships are on the line, is it common for professors and career counselors to personally make calls on behalf of students to firms or government officials?

Professors do not routinely make calls to employers on behalf of students when jobs or clerkships are on the line. However, if a professor has developed a close professional relationship with a student, he or she may agree to serve as a reference for the student in their job search. Professors may intervene on behalf of certain students in very specific situations, but this is not generally done as a matter of course.

Do students gain from the fact that the law school is located smack in the hub of Washington?

Georgetown Law students are particularly fortunate to attend law school in the nation’s capital. The law school’s location -- only several blocks from the U.S. Capitol and the White House -- allows students to engage in a wide variety of internships and externships throughout the academic year. Georgetown Law students frequently intern on Capitol Hill, in government agencies, non-profits, and firms of all sizes. The law school’s location also provides students with invaluable networking opportunities -– students attend conferences and events that bring them into close contact with experienced professionals working in the D.C. legal arena.

Do most Georgetown grads dream of taking the big firm route and go into private practice? Does Georgetown encourage diverse career paths and nontraditional routes especially in academia and public interest?

“Georgetown Law students frequently intern on Capitol Hill, in government agencies, non-profits, and firms of all sizes. The law school’s location also provides students with invaluable networking opportunities…”

Georgetown Law students pursue career opportunities in many different areas of the law. Some choose the private practice route and end up working for big, medium and small-size law firms. Others are more interested in advocacy and policy-making, so they choose to enter the government or work for a non-profit. Yet others seek to provide legal services to indigent clients by working for legal aid organizations or public defender offices. Others yet prefer to work internationally. Georgetown Law encourages students to pursue their interests, regardless of whether those interests lead to private practice, public service, or academia. The law school provides students with counselors who can help them determine which area of the law would be best suited for them. The Office of Career Services mostly advises students who wish to enter private practice, or who wish to complete clerkships. The Office of Public Interest and Community Service, on the other hand, assists students seeking more public service-oriented positions. Georgetown Law even has an International Internship Program, which allows students to spend their summers at various firms and non-profit organizations around the world. Georgetown Law supports students in whatever career path they choose to pursue, and ensures that students have access to the requisite resources to make their career dreams a reality.

Do most South Asian students who come to Georgetown Law sign up for the J.D or LL.M program?

Georgetown Law hosts a large number of international students in both its J.D. and LL.M. program. Students from India have been enrolled in the J.D. program, but most students from this region generally come to Georgetown to complete the LL.M. program.

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Campulse
Better Technology, a fun learning culture, and gamification of education is what we need. Not the boring "Teaching". Nice post !
09 June 2013


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