On-Campus Recruiting and Interviewing Tips
The Fall is a busy time of year for both employers and students in the job market. Employers who are able to hire far in advance of their needs, like large law firms, government agencies, and corporations, participate in OCI (on-campus interviewing). However, at the same time, savvy students are engaged in their own job search independent of OCI. This independent job search involves identification of employers and formal outreach to them via cover letter, personal visit, introduction via a third-party, letters of recommendation, etc. The effective job seeker will use both OCI and the independent job search to maximize opportunities for future employment. Questions? Check out our OCI and Independent Job Search FAQ here.
Unlike the larger employers who participate in Fall on-campus interviewing, the many small and mid-size firms recruiting in the Spring do not follow a formal hiring process. Rather, some employers will post positions on Symplicity and select students to interview at their offices. Other employers will interview on-campus and still others will expect students to take the initiative to apply directly on their own without posting positions.
Small and mid-size law firms and smaller corporate legal departments are more likely to hire in the spring. From January until the beginning of May, Symplicity offers postings for summer and post-graduate positions, generally from smaller law firms. Since small firms make their decisions to hire on an as-needed basis, the majority of small firm listings are received from February through May. To view a list of Job Fairs/Consortia that students from Pitt Law have been invited to participate in over the past few years, please visit here.
Government & Public Interest
Keep track of Government deadlines by viewing the Government Honors & Internship Handbook on the Extranet. Some positions are also listed on Symplicity. Federal and state judges usually hire summer judicial externs from January through May (please check the Externship site via the Extranet). Post- graduate judicial clerkship positions are posted year-round, with the majority of state courts hiring in the spring. Most public interest organizations hire for summer and post-graduate positions in the late winter and early spring. A good resource for public interest positions is PSLawNet. Also, consider participating in the Northeast Consortium Job Fair, which includes legal employers from all sectors located in the D.C. metro area and takes place in January in Washington, D.C.
Career Counselor Assistance
We are available for appointments to talk about your independent job searches and also recommend that you attend the programs offered by the CSO. These programs will assist you in both your independent job search and the On-Campus Interview process. The CSO office is open full-time during the summer - drop-ins are welcome, although an appointment is the best way to get the attention you deserve. We look forward to helping you.