When I was experiencing the fall semester, I thought no time in school would run faster than this. The first month of the spring semester proves me wrong. The winter in New York is extremely long, but it is always the hottest season in law school in terms of searching for jobs.
For LLM students, there are two major job fairs: the International Student Interviewing Program (ISIP) and the West Coast Job Fair. ISIP is held by NYU for most law schools on the East Coast, and is supposed to be the largest job fair for LLM students. Most offer students a chance to return to their original countries. It is one of the most common and formal ways to get a job back home. However, not all students get chances for interviewing, especially students with no prior working experience. The West Coast job fair is held by UCLA, which basically targets students in their regions NYU students also receive offers for interviews, but it is not a primary way for NYU students to get a job. For students who want to stay in America or who are unsatisfied with the recruiting firms at the job fairs, they have to work in other ways to find a job.
NYU also holds a Public Interest Legal Career Fair, which is the biggest job fair for public interest work. However, interviewing opportunities for LLM students are quite scarce. The best chance is the table talk. A table talk, as defined by an NYU administrator, is “a cocktail party without cocktails.” The table talk is informal, and normally organizations will send different people other than interviewers to connect with students. Compared with JDs, an LLM’s chances are smaller. However, it is a typical occasion for American-style networking. That is the thing we have been educated about consistently since entering law school. There is no harm to walking in wearing a suit and having a discussion with a potential employer.
It may be common sense that the formal way is sometimes the least efficient way. Finding a job is not necessarily hard, but it is nevertheless consuming in terms of time and energy. For people with no experience, it is hard to get a first job. It seems that no one is offering someone a “first” job. Even entry-level work requires experience. Thus, for those who are green, the market can be a mess. For people with experience, there are bottom lines and expectations.
Another piece of common sense that I heard from a 2L is that you are always less busy than you think you are. Under that circumstance, I would think about Proust’s In Search of Lost Time. In addition, I wear my running shoes and head for Central Park on a sunny Saturday afternoon.
I hope I can keep running. I hope time can never catch me.