The OCI Exodus Means You Must Broaden Your Job Search

jobsearchOn campus interviews (OCIs) have always netted some law students great jobs, but in this economy, law students must pursue other opportunities.

Harvard is reporting a 20-30% drop in OCIs for both second and third-year law students. NYU is reporting both interviews and callbacks have dropped dramatically. Some industry analysts predict this will result in more students pursuing jobs in smaller firms, non-legal jobs, and even launching solo careers straight out of law school.

The sky is not falling. OCIs have always been viewed as the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. In actuality the vast majority of any given class will obtain their jobs outside of OCI.

In this economy, all options are on the table. If you are a third-year student, consider finding a law clerk position at a smaller firm and make yourself indispensable. You might not get a million-dollar job offer—but you might get an offer. There are other postings on Lawyerist about finding a non-paid externship.

If going solo is an option, find a practicing solo attorney who might be willing to office share or at least provide some mentorship. Once you get licensed, they might throw some cases your way. Solo practitioners are self-starters who know how difficult it is when you first start out—and they are willing to help.

Nobody is going to hand you a job—get out there and make something happen.

As OCIs Drop at Top Law Schools, NALP Official Predicts More Grads Will Go Solo | ABA Law Journal

(photo: deanmeyersnet)


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  • defer baby

    I highly encourage people to defer their law school ambitions. You do not want to start at a small firm or as a solo. Both options suck.

  • I’d love to hear why you think starting at a small firm or starting your own firm sucks. Those sound like great options to me.