We received some chatter this week about DLA Piper shortening their summer program. Interviewees on the east-coast have been told that the program would be only 10 weeks long, as opposed to the 11 or 12 weeks they were expecting.
DLA Piper spokesperson Jason Costa assured us that scaling back was not a reaction to the downturn in the economy:
2/3rds of our summer programs were already ten weeks long. Some were a little bit longer and some were a little bit shorter. About a year ago we decided we were going to standardize most of our summer programs to a ten week term, which impacted a couple of offices on the east coast. The result is that all of the summer programs are going to be over by early August.
Costa went on to say that the change was made to so they could be finished with their summer program by the time OCI starts in late August.
More about the 2009 summer class after the jump.
As attention shifts to the 2009 summer class, we have to wonder if firms are doing everything they can to avoid the 2008 “over-subscription” problem that many firms claim caused the tepid offer rate being experienced by the 2008 summer class.
Earlier this week Thelen canceled their entire 2009 summer program (We think. Thelen’s representatives have still yet to confirm or deny that report).
Even though we expect Thelen’s move was in anticipation of a merger, DLA lopping off the tail end of their summer program is still tame by comparison. Remember, just two and a half weeks ago DLA poached Thelen rainmaker Jeffrey Steiner.
In the grand scheme of things is a week or two going to kill anybody? What if cutting a week saves a person’s job? What if it creates an extra associate job?
In this case, there does not appear to be any hidden “we’re about to implode” motive behind DLA’s actions. They’re saving maybe a paycheck on some east coast summers, while bringing those summer programs in line with the rest of their offices. We wouldn’t be surprised to see a few other firms follow suit, if they haven’t already.
Earlier: Nationwide No Offer Watch: DLA and Bryan Cave