Q: How many employers participated in Spring OCI and how many should we anticipate will participate in fall?
A: We had 22 employers register to participate this spring, which is slightly more than last year and quite a bit more than we have typically had in past years. Something to keep in mind is that not all 22 will be recruiting for all class years. We have some recruiting just 3Ls and recent grads, some recruiting just 2Ls, etc. Regarding fall, we typically have 60+ employers participate, and work to grow that number each year. We won't have a good idea of the actual numbers for this fall until later in the summer.
Q: I have heard that only about 25% of students get their jobs through OCI. Is that correct? If so, how do the remaining 75% get their jobs?
A: You are pretty close in your numbers, and that isn't limited to Baylor but at a majority of law schools nation-wide. I think the way to think about this is that the CDO will provide you with a variety of tools and opportunities to help you find a job. OCI is a convenient, almost luxurious way to get your job, and if that works out for you then fantastic! For the large majority of students, as you note, the job won't come through OCI. So those students will really need to take advantage of the other tools and opportunities we provide which, in contrast to OCI, are not as convenient or luxurious. Here are some examples:
- Job Fairs. There are several job fairs that take place around the state and country each year which you should consider participating in. These are probably the next closest thing to OCI because they bring a group of employers together and you can get multiple contacts and interviews in a compressed amount of time. One thing to keep in mind is job fairs tend to be focused on a geographic area (e.g. The Valley) or practice area (e.g. Public Interest).
- Job Postings. Symplicity currently has 25 postings for entry level attorneys, 23 for 3Ls, 27 for 2Ls and 19 for 1Ls. That's a total of 94 positions which I'd say is a pretty good representation of a typical day's number.
- Counseling (Strategy Session, Resume/Cover Letter Review, Mock Interviews). Our office offers a variety of counseling services to assist you throughout your job search journey. Sometimes the hardest thing is just getting started, and the process can seem overwhelming. I encourage you to please take advantage of strategy sessions to help make the process clear and manageable. If you're going to attend a job fair or apply to a job posting, you shouldn't leave anything to chance. Spend some time with Angela to make sure your cover letter and resume are appropriate and do a great job of presenting who you are to an employer on paper. Then please take advantage of doing a mock interview with me and work out any issues before meeting with the employer.
- Programming and Networking. The CDO brings in attorneys from various locations and practice areas for you to both learn from (i.e. hearing the content of their message) and connect with (i.e. add someone to your growing network who you can stay in touch with and may be able to help you down the line). Many jobs are given to those who the employer knows or is familiar with, and these are great opportunities to widen your reach. We also work with the Alumni office to have students attend receptions around the state; please take advantage of these!
- Resume Delivery. During Fall OCI we have an "Employer Outreach" program where we identify employers who aren't participating in OCI but are known to hire clerks or young attorneys. Those who participate will have their resumes sent to these employers from the CDO. Also, I personally deliver resumes to employers when I visit them.
Q: When should I begin my job search?
A: We believe your job search starts the day you arrive on campus, and is a three year process. Those waiting until after Practice Court or the third year in general to begin thinking about this are likely going to have a tougher time finding their job. More practically, we suggest you spend two hours per week working on something related to your job search. That could mean, for example, attending one of our programs, going over your cover letter with Professor Kelley-Claybrook or researching potential employers. The job search is a marathon not a sprint, and it starts from day one!
Have a question for the Mailbag?! Send it to: Daniel_Hare@Baylor.edu and/or @BaylorLawDaniel on Twitter.
Job of the Week: Each week I highlight a job in Symplicity you might be interested in but may have missed. This week's job is: 2014 Summer Law Clerk with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas in Dallas (pays a stipend) for 2Ls or 3Ls. Log in to Symplicity to view this job and apply.
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