9/11, Interview Stories, War on Terror

Interview Horror Stories: September 11 Has 24 Billable Hours

world trade center above_the_law royalty_free.jpgNeither rain, nor snow, nor the largest terrorist attack in U.S. history will keep certain lawyers from their work. Here is our next interview anecdote:

I was a 2L at a western law school in the 2001-2002 school year. September was, of course, prime interviewing season, and there were usually 5-10 firms interviewing at the school on any given morning.

On the morning of September 11, I had an interview scheduled for 10:00 with a well-respected, midsize law firm. After watching the horror in New York on TV for a few hours that morning, I assumed that life would be postponed for a few days, while the country reacted and sorted itself out.

Not having anywhere else to go, I headed over to the law school to find some sense of community. While walking the halls, I noticed that even though all of the other firms had cancelled their interviews for the day, one firm was still going forward — the firm I was scheduled to interview with, in just five minutes.

I didn’t have time to change, so I had no choice but to walk into the interview in jeans and a t-shirt. After initial pleasantries, I asked the interviewer whether he really wanted to do this now, given that a national tragedy was unfolding. He said that he did, and that he wouldn’t postpone it even for an hour — he had a lot of work to do that day, and he wanted to get back to the office.

Needless to say, my heart wasn’t really into talking about my résumé for twenty minutes on a day of national mourning. The interview was a disaster, and I didn’t get an offer.

The interviewer’s philosophy: If we suspend on-campus interviewing on September 11, then the terrorists have won.
Earlier: Prior Interview Horror Stories (scroll down)

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