Part-Time Student Job Search Strategies
1. Remember that your job search is a year-round activity. Too many students focus on big firm fall recruiting and are disappointed when jobs do not result. Maintain your motivation throughout the year.
2. Create a job search system to keep track of all things job search related: the advice you are given, the business cards you collect, info about every employer to whom you apply, reminders to follow-up, etc. Decide when and how much time you can devote to your job search each week and set specific time aside. This will help ensure a more disciplined approach to your job searches.
3. Be realistic about the large firm market. These and judicial clerkships are some of the most competitive jobs. If you are interested in these jobs, don't hesitate to apply, but think about alternative practice settings (public interest, government, small firms, corporations, academia) if you are not successful in these markets.
4. Consider working in a small or medium-sized firm. For a list of small and medium-sized firms, please refer to the Chicago Area Law Firms, which can be sorted by firm size.
5. Be as flexible as possible. Consider different geographic locations, areas of practice, and types of organizations (law firms, corporations, public interest organizations, academia, and government).
6. Your resume and cover letter will most often determine whether you receive an interview. Take the time to make sure they are both effective marketing tools - the best way to ensure this is by modeling the samples in your 1L Handbook and asking your counselor to review them with you.
7. Promote your work experience and your transferable skills by identifying what will appeal to legal employers. If you are applying to a job in response to a posted job ad, pay attention to the language in the ad as you draft your cover letter and resume. Mirror the language you see in the ad as much as you can without making it obvious.
8. Develop as many personal contacts as possible. The more people you know and include in your network, the greater number of possible opportunities for you. A way to begin doing this is by attending all of the evening programs the law school holds, which are numerous. Read your emails and our newsletter and mark your calendar to attend every event that involves practicing attorneys. Make sure to introduce yourself to those practicing attorneys and follow-up with a thank you email to begin the conversation.
9. Use Symplicity frequently to search for jobs - new opportunities are posted nearly every day!
10. Rely on everyone you know and everyone you meet at Loyola as a job search resource - the faculty and administration, the adjunct professors, the practicing lawyers who volunteer with the various trial practice competitions, and program participants.
11. Follow-up on applications that you send out. Don't hesitate to contact an employer to whom you have sent a resume to inquire about the status of your application. It will show that you are enthusiastic about the position.