You were selected for an interview! Congrats! Now what?
Schedule a mock interview with the Career Center. This is the single best thing you can do to prepare for your interview. You may think to yourself, “I’ve interviewed well in the past so I don’t need a mock interview.” While it might be true that you’ve interviewed well in the past, interviewing is a skill that can continually be refined and improved. You don’t want the feedback from the employer to come in the form of “no offer.” Get honest feedback and tips for improving your interview skills BEFORE the interview. It is imperative that you practice articulating your responses in real time, rather than simply thinking through what you will say.
Research. Try to learn as much as possible about the organization, its attorneys, and its clients. You will want to be current on high-profile cases, major transactions, or other noteworthy events. If you have the names of the interviewers, find out about their backgrounds, the nature of their practices and any recent matters. That said, don’t over-stress if you don’t have the names of the attorneys. Remember that attorneys are busy and that schedules change so it is important to be prepared and flexible. For resources on researching firms, see the Resources for Research page on the Career Center blog.
Have a plan and focus on the positive. Go to your interview with an agenda; don’t simply let the interviewer steer the interview in any direction they’d like. Carefully consider the main points you would like to convey, and have concrete examples of your work experience as evidence of your skills. Focus on your strengths, be confident and enthusiastic, regardless of your GPA or lack of legal experience. Here’s a worksheet to help you plan out responses to the most common interview questions (portal log-in required).
Prepare your questions. Remember that the interview is also your chance to find out about the employer. Ask questions that are meaningful to you. While you may ask about the interviewer’s own experience, their answer may not give much insight into whether the employer is a good fit for you. Instead, you might consider asking what is the most challenging or rewarding aspect of working at the specific organization. Students who have multiple interviews may find it useful to ask some of the same questions to all firms. You can also use Pillsbury LLP’s 15 Questions Interview Tool. Of course, avoid questions about salary, benefits, or work hours; those questions will have to wait until after an offer is made.
Take careful notes. After your interview, jot down notes about the people you met, and your impressions of the employer. This is especially helpful right after the interview because it may be weeks before you have contact with the employer again. For students with multiple interviews, this also helps you organize your notes and impressions of each employer while the information is still fresh in your mind.
Follow up. Thank-you notes for screening interviews are not necessary, but they are required after any call-back interviews. Send thank you notes by email or regular mail within 24 hours of your interview to each interviewer. Personalize your note by reminding them of your relevant work experience or a particular point of conversation you had with them. Follow up again 2-3 weeks after the interview with the recruiter or an attorney with whom you spoke to reiterate your interest in the employer if you have not heard from them.
What is the difference between a screening interview and a callback interview?
- Screening Interviews – Screening interviews are the initial on campus interviews you have through the summer recruitment programs lasting 20-30 minutes. For resume collection employers, the screening interviews usually take place at employer offices. Employers conduct brief screening interviews to get a better sense of the candidate’s skills, experiences and level of interest in the position.
- Callback Interviews – Callback interviews tend to be longer and candidates may meet with multiple attorneys in a series of back-to-back 20-30 minute-interviews, usually in the employer’s office. In addition to letting the employer learn more about your skills, experiences and level of interest, callback interviews provide an opportunity to assess how well your personality and demeanor “fit” with the others in the office and with the organizational culture and values. Sometimes these interviews include lunch, coffee or some other type of social interaction.
Still looking for more information? Here is a checklist for legal interviewing and a primer for legal interviewing including many sample questions (requires logging into the GW Law Portal). More information can be found on the “Preparing for Interviews with Legal Employers” page on the portal.
Stop by the Career Center and get a free copy of the
2015-2016 edition of Chambers Associate!
Chambers Associate: The Student’s Guide to Law Firms offers students an inside look at the working lives of associates in the nation’s leading law firms. Based on interviews with junior associates, these guide sheds light on the topics that matter to juniors, such as work assignments, social life, pro bono, diversity, firm expectations, salary, personal development and more. This career guide also provides commentary from firm chairs, managing partners, and hiring partners to give students an understanding of how a firm recruits from law school.
We have a limited number of copies available at the Career Center on a first come, first served basis. You must appear in person to pick up your copy, as we will not ship them to students.
This offer is available to GW Law Students only. Students are limited to one copy. You may be asked for your GW ID.
The first OCI Resume collection deadline is Thursday, July 23. What does this mean and why should you apply?
The Career Center offers resume books and resume collections to help employers and students connect. Resume books and resume collections operate differently, so here’s a little primer to clear up any confusion.
“Resume” actually means “documents.” Don’t let the term “resume” mislead you. In both resume collections and you may be asked to submit cover letters and transcripts in addition to your resume.
OCI RESUME COLLECTION
Employers that participate in the OCI Resume Collections are seeking student application documents (remember that “resume collect” might actually require cover letters and transcripts), typically for Summer 2016 positions. Students will find these employers under the OCI tab in Symplicity. The resume collections can be seen from the “Session” drop down.
Resume collection employers aren’t participating in the traditional on campus interviews because for whatever reason, they prefer to interview candidates on their own timeline and in their own offices rather than at the times and locations designated for the GW Law OCI. Generally, the resume collect employers plan to review applications, conduct interviews, and make offers before winter break for Summer 2016 positions.
You must “apply” or submit your application documents to EACH individual employer in the resume collection. It is NOT done collectively and sent to all employers. There are currently collections for July (deadline is 7/23 at noon Eastern) and August (deadline is 8/13 at noon Eastern), and it is likely that a September collection will be added. The deadlines for submission are firm because after the deadlines, a packet of the applications for each employer is generated by our office and sent to each employer. From there, the employer contacts students individually for interviews.
Need help keeping track of all the recruiting deadlines? Subscribe to the Recruitment Program Calendar!
RESUME BOOKS BY GEOGRAPHIC REGION AND PRACTICE AREA
The Career Center creates resume books in the Fall and Spring of each academic year to collect resumes from students. The resume books appear under the job postings tab in Symplicity, but they are not tied to a specific employment opportunity. Instead, students seeking employment opportunities in the specific practice areas or geographic markets submit their resumes to indicate their interest and consent for their resumes to be shared with employers and alumni. When alumni and employers ask our office for resumes for internships, full-time positions, networking, mentoring or other professional opportunities, the Career Center relies on the resumes in the Resume Books as a primary resource for sharing student resumes. These resume books are created by semester, with Fall books open October through December and Spring books open January through May.
DIVERSITY RESUME BOOKS
From time to time, the Career Center also offers resumes books for students who self- identify as diverse. The diversity resume books have several different purposes and the best way to keep track of diversity resume book opportunities is to join the Diversity Newsletter by emailing the Assistant Director for Diversity and Inclusion, Jaya Saxena at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you still have questions about resume books or resume collections, contact the Career Center at email@example.com or call us at 202-994-7340.
For more information about on campus interview and recruitment programs, visit the recruitment programs page.
Interested in applying for clerkships? The online application system OSCAR opens to rising 2Ls on August 1st!
Join us as we go over step-by-step registering on OSCAR, setting up your profile, uploading your materials, and searching and applying for available federal clerkships. We will also discuss the timing of applications as well as strategic issues.
Live webinars will be held on:
Wednesday, July 22 at 5 pm
Friday, July 24 at 12 pm
Tuesday, July 28 at 12 pm
Register through the workshops tab on Symplicity.
To register, log-in to Symplicity, click on “Events”, then “Workshops”, and register for the webinar you would like to attend. The registration page will also provide a link to the webinar.
You must have a reliable internet connection to participate. To see recordings of prior webinars click here.
This webinar is available to GW Law students only.
Women’s Bar Association Foundation Founders Fellowship
Deadline: Tuesday, July 7, 2015, 12p.m. EST
This year, the WBA Foundation’s Founders Fellowship of $7,500 will be awarded to a GW Law School student working at a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the legal and related needs of women and girls in the DC metropolitan area.
To be considered, please submit: (1) a resume, (2) essay (no more than 500 words single spaced) and (3) your supervisor’s name, phone number and email address through Symplicity Posting #33815. Essay question: Please describe how your work this summer supports the legal and related needs of women and girls in the DC metropolitan area. The WBA Foundation asks recipients to consent to the publication and use of the executive summary and essay in these mediums.
Questions? Email Tamara Devieux-Adams at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This opportunity is open to GW Law students only.
The first bidding deadline for summer recruitment programs is July 10th? Are you ready?
Keep track of all of the summer recruiting deadlines by subscribing to the 2015 Recruiting Calendar on Google. See all of the deadlines on your calendar by following these easy instructions.
Subscribing from your Google Calendar (Web Version):
- Navigate to your Google Calendar
- Click the down-arrow next to Other calendars
- Select Add by URLfrom the menu
- Enter this address in the field provided: http://bit.ly/gwocigcal
- Click Add calendar. The calendar will appear in the Other calendarssection of the calendar list to the left. Note: It may take up to 8 hours for changes in ICS feeds to reflect in your Google Calendar.
Subscribing on your iPhone/iPad:
- Launch the Settings appon your iPhone or iPad
- Tap on Mail, Contacts, Calendars
- Tap on Add Account…under the Mail section
- Tap on Other
- Tap on Add Subscribed Calendarunder the Other section
- Enter this address in the field provided: http://bit.ly/gwocigcal
- Click Next
- Tap on the Save button in the upper right hand corner. The subscribed Calendar will now show up in the Calendar app.
Subscribing on your Android device:
Subscribing to a Google calendar on Android is a two-step process. You must first subscribe to the calendar using the web version of Google Calendar (see above) and then add it to your Android device. After subscribing on the web version of Google Calendar, follow these steps to add the calendar to your Android:
- Go into you device’s Calendar app, in the settings make sure your Google account is checked, then select Sync Now.
- You may need to select the Google account calendar, then under Other calendars check the subscribed calendars the Android device is to sync with (by default, the “Other calendars” may not be checked).
Law firm receptions continue taking place through July! Below is an updated list of all receptions law firms have invited GW Law students to take part in. These events are a fantastic way for rising 2Ls to gain exposure to a variety of firms and start building relationships in the DC area, as well as your home market, before bidding closes!
All of these events are for rising 2L students only, unless otherwise noted. Please check our blog calendar frequently for specific event information, rsvp information and deadlines, and for new event announcements.
Summer 2015 Law Firm Receptions
July 7, 2015
Miller Chevalier Cocktails & Conversation: Demystifying the Interview Process – DC | 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Milbank Rising 2L Reception – NYC | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
July 8, 2015
Holland & Hart Rising 2L Reception – Salt Lake City | 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
July 13, 2015
Paul Weiss OCI Interview Tips Panel and Reception – NYC | 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
July 16, 2015
Holland & Hart Rising 2L Summer Reception – Denver | 6:30 – 8:30 pm
July 20, 2015
Simpson Thatcher Open House – Palo Alto | 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Fried Frank Women’s Forum Cocktail Reception – NYC | 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
The GW Knowledge in Action Career Internship Fund – Fall 2015
UPCOMING DEADLINE:July 1, 2015
The GW Knowledge in Action Career Internship Fund (KACIF) supports GW students in pursuing high-quality, necessarily unpaid internships that foster their career exploration and enhance their academic program, while reducing the financial challenges associated with unpaid internships. The General Application period for Fall 2015 internships is now open and closes at 11:59 pm EST on July 1, 2015.
KACIF provides grants ranging up to $3,000 to GW undergraduate and graduate students pursuing internships that are necessarily unpaid. In order to apply, students must be in good standing.
- Have a FALL 2015 UNPAID INTERNSHIP
- Need up to $3,000 to cover costs associated with your internship (e.g., travel, daily transportation, meals and professional attire)?
CONSIDER APPLYING FOR A GW KACIF GRANT
The GW Knowledge in Action Career Internship Fund (KACIF), through the generous financial support of alumni, parents and Board of Trustees members, provides grants ranging up to $3,000 to all GW students pursuing high-quality, necessarily-unpaid internships that foster their career exploration and enhance their academic program.
IT’S EASY TO APPLY!
Fall 2015 applications accepted June 15th-July 1st, 2015. For more information, including eligibility requirements and the application process please go to: