by Liz Berry, Class of 2016
When I started thinking about everything happening this month, I found it a little fitting that Catching Fire (i.e. Hunger Games Part II for those of you who aren’t quite so Panem obsessed) and the 1L job application process both start around the same time. When I think of the job search, it seems like a fight to grab the best job/internship/clerkship. And honestly, it seems scary.
Luckily, OCS (Office of Career Services) is the Peeta of law school and is here to help. 1Ls across the country were allowed to speak to their career services departments at the end of October. At W&M Law, each 1L is assigned a personal counselor, and given a time to meet with him or her. At first, I was a little terrified of meeting with my advisor. Since I’m still not exactly sure of what I want to specialize in, I thought that I might just get some general advice about looking into different possibilities and being told to figure things out by myself.
Wrong. My career counselor was wonderful. My counselor was able to ask questions that really explored what I was interested in (even without me knowing I was interested in those areas) and provide great tips about looking for internships that match my goals. And on top of that, my counselor gave me networking advice to explore my interests and delve further into the question of “What do you really want to do?” From the alumni I’ve called and people I’ve talked to, the advice seems to be working. I’ve already scheduled a second appointment with my counselor to make sure I’m still headed in the right direction. OCS might not hand out jobs when you get a diploma, but they certainly make sure you can self-identify the areas you’re interested in, and how you can go about exploring those interests.
So maybe, just maybe, this internship search won’t quite be the Hunger Games of law school. Maybe, just maybe, this is all going to be quite all right. Thanks to OCS.
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