This announcement is to identify some important resources to help you in your public interest or public sector job search for your 2L summer.
Unlike 1L year, when you were not permitted to contact employers until December 1, you should begin planning for your 2L summer PIPS job search this summer. Many competitive non-profit organizations (e.g., ACLU, Earthjustice) and some government agencies (e.g., New York City Law Department) complete summer hiring early in the Fall, sometimes as early as August; while some federal government agencies accept applications on a rolling basis throughout August, with a number of interview invitations in September (e.g., U.S. Dept. of Justice, see below).
2L PIPS Job Search Resources
Public Interest and Government jobs pages of the CDO website
Our PIPS Webcasts, such as “2L PIPS Job Search Overview Presentation”, Post-Graduate Government Career Search Presentation
Cover Letter Guide and Resume Guide
Government Honors and Internship Handbook
Don’t forget that your classmates are also an invaluable resource for candid information about potential employers. You can use the Search Evaluations link on your b-Line homepage to view evaluations from your fellow students, and review additional evaluations collected by the Field Placement Program. If you are having trouble finding a classmate who worked at a particular organization, please feel free to contact us — we will do our best to find an appropriate contact for you.
PIPS Jobs at Early Interview Week (EIW) & Fall Interview Program (FIP)
Some public interest or government employers will choose to participate in EIW (Aug 6-10), even though EIW is primarily intended for private sector BigLaw recruiting, and FIP (Aug 27-Oct 5) is designed to attract nonprofits, plaintiff-side firms, and government agencies. For this reason, be sure to review all of the participating employers in both FIP and EIW so as not to miss opportunities to interview with your target employers. You can now review the list of EIW & FIP-participating employers by going to the “OCI” tab in the b-Line.
We know that for students whose primary interest is public interest work, the decision whether to seek interviews with private sector firms in EIW can be anxiety-producing and complex. Please remember you can always make an appointment with one of us (see below for more information) to discuss EIW and the pros/cons of working in large law firms to find the right path for you. If you do decide to pursue private sector employment through EIW, you should be able to hold open 1 private sector offer in order to pursue a PI/PS summer internship, allowing you to participate in both EIW and FIP.
While EIW & FIP are great ways to find employment for the summer, an effective 2L summer PIPS job search should include other strategies, such as responding to posted jobs at PSLawNet.org and b-Line.
Funding your 2L Summer Job
Berkeley Law’s Summer PIPS Fellowship Program (aka “Edley grants”) offers stipends to qualifying 2Ls working at public interest or government employers during the summer. First-time recipients of the fellowship, provided they meet all participation requirements, can receive $4,000 for the summer. Second-time applicants (students receiving Edley grants this summer and who will apply again for next summer) are guaranteed $2,000, and are eligible to receive additional funds set aside specifically for students pursuing a second summer of public interest or government work. Please visit the fellowship program webpage for more detailed information. If you will be a first-time applicant this coming summer, you must complete the program’s pro bono hours requirement: 25 hours of pro bono law-related work before the application due date (usually April 1st). Please visit the Pro Bono page of our website for more information on how to satisfy this requirement. If you received an Edley grant this summer, you have already satisfied this requirement & do not need to complete any additional hours.
Internships with the US Department of Justice
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) hires more summer legal interns than any other federal government agency. If a DOJ summer internship is at or near the top of your list, you should consider applying to both the Summer Legal Internship Program (SLIP) and the Volunteer Legal Internship Program (VLIP).
The differences between these two programs are that the SLIP is a paid program and the VLIP is not; and that a limited number of divisions/sections participate in the SLIP, while nearly all of the divisions/sections participate in the VLIP.
SLIP also involves a centralized online application, which opens on July 31, 2012 and is closes on September 4, 2012. More information about SLIP, including an application checklist and timeline, a list of participating components and their anticipated hires, and answers to frequently asked questions can be found here.
The VLIP has a decentralized application process. Since this program tends to attract a lot of 1L applications, comprehensive information (including deadlines and hiring components for summer 2013 internships) is not typically made available on the website until late November.
You should, however, plan on applying directly and independently this August to any of the offices in which you are interested that are listed as participating in the VLIP. Click here for detailed information on the VLIP.
Finally, some of the DOJ components have in the past opened up summer internship positions early for 2L applications on PSLawNet. To find these opportunities, do a search for internships with “U.S. Department of Justice” in the “Organization Name” box.
If you have questions about DOJ internships or other opportunities with federal government agencies, please feel free to schedule a counseling appointment with Eric Stern in the CDO.
This summer, we are available during regular business hours (M-F, 9 am to 5 pm). The most efficient way to arrange an appointment (by phone, Skype or in person) is through our on-line appointment scheduler. However, we know that some of you may have difficulty fitting an appointment into your regular summer work day. Please feel free to contact the attorney-counselor with whom you are interested in meeting directly and we will do our best to arrange a phone, Skype or in-person meeting (on campus, or perhaps in Oakland or SF) outside of regular hours.
Here again is a list of our attorney-counselors’ specialty areas to help ensure that you receive the most relevant guidance.
Public Interest Job Search (including DA & PD careers) Alex Lee Melanie Rowen
Government Job Search Eric Stern