Topic: Summer Job

Life as a Summer Associate

So this summer was quite an adventure for me. Being a Summer Associate at a private firm was quite a shift from working at the Court, and I was so excited to have the guidance of my mentors who helped me with career advice and steered me toward taking on the challenge of working with a full-service firm that does both criminal and civil cases. While I worked long hours, it was an excellent taste for what lay ahead: hard but fulfilling work, where you put in much time and effort, but at the end of the day you really feel you’ve managed to help people. My firm was also full of great mentors who demonstrated how to walk the walk of taking the high road, how to keep in mind a broader perspective of the practice of law while digging into the facts to assess cases for all their aspects and possible claims so that we could steer them in the right direction even if we weren’t going to take on the work ourselves. Any cynicism I had about the profession in my prior career was revised because I felt the firm always did the right thing, and it was often rewarded; the practice has only grown, even in difficult economic outlook of the last few years. In short, they practiced law in the way I hope to practice law.
So, I’m in the happy position of transitioning from Summer Associate to being a Law Clerk for the indefinite future. Finding a place where I fit and could thrive was a challenge, of course, but when you’re lucky enough to do so, you really get so much out of it that deepens your understanding of the law and how things play out. The amount of client contact I got in addition to exploring different phases of litigation is fascinating. I might have thought of myself more as the transactional type before I came to the firm, but again I found myself expanding my view of myself. There is no substitute for trying things out. You get to know yourself better. And so my journey in law school has been so much about self-discovery and finding how and where I fit, and how I can do my best. And I’m happy to find a place to continue that path.

8 September 2012

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April in Oregon

So it’s April, and the semester has whizzed by! February and March were intense and dramatic (not just with the snow) for me because I had so much on my plate. But we’re closing our semester now and I need to talk about it.

I was happy to meet many of the incoming class of 2015 during our reception for admittees, whom I hope will join us.

That aside, my externship continues to go well, and indeed my legal writing skills are being challenged, and I am really learning so much in these waning weeks that I wish I could extend it out. But a local firm snatched me up as a summer associate. The process was long, but I’m glad I landed at a place I think will provide me both with challenging work and a good mentor or two. I feel spoiled in some way from having so many good people to work with in my short time in law school so far, but so very grateful how things have worked out, especially in light of the help and guidance I received which helped me decide the right direction to head.

6 April 2012

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