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Career Center: Clerkship Survey Results

Career Center AboveTheLaw Lateral Link ATL.jpgOur recent Career Center survey asked about whether the recession has affected clerkship bonuses and law firm hiring of clerks.  Of respondents at law firms, a slight majority — 57% — indicated that their firms are not interviewing judicial clerks for Fall 2010 positions.  Of respondents who are currently clerking, only 30% indicated that they have a position for Fall 2010 or have even been able to get interviews for such positions.  Despite these depressing statistics for post-clerkship employment, a majority of law student respondents indicated that they are planning on clerking after law school. 

Check out the full survey results after the jump — and visit the Career Center, powered by Lateral Link, for more on clerkship bonuses and hiring trends at firms across the country.

The majority of law firm respondents indicated that their firms are not interviewing judicial clerks for Fall 2010 positions:

  • 57% of respondents said their firm was not interviewing judicial clerks for Fall 2010 positions.
  • 43% of respondents said their firm was interviewing judicial clerks for Fall 2010 positions. 

Respondents indicated that the following firms are still paying $50,000 clerkship bonuses: Gibson Dunn, Morrison & Foerster, Latham & Watkins, Paul Weiss, Quinn Emanuel, Sidley Austin, Ropes & Gray, O’Melveny & Myers, Sonnenschein, Jenner & Block, WilmerHale.

Less than half of the judicial clerk respondents indicated that they had an post-clerkship offer for employment yet:

  • 15% of respondents had an offer from a firm for Fall 2010.
  • 8% of respondents had multiple offers for Fall 2010 and had not yet decided on one.
  • 8% of respondents had started interviewing for Fall 2010 positions.
  • 27% of respondents had not started interviewing for Fall 2010 positions.
  • 26% of respondents had started looking for Fall 2010 positions but had not yet gotten any interviews
  • 22% of respondents with an offer from a firm said they had not worked at the firm before clerking.

The majority of judicial clerk respondents who did have offers from firms indicated that they had worked at that firm before clerking:

  • 78% of respondents with an offer from a firm said they had worked at the firm before clerking.
  • 22% of respondents with an offer from a firm said they had not worked at the firm before clerking.

More than half of law student respondents plan to clerk after law school:

  • 53% of respondents said they plan to clerk.
  • 28% of respondents said they aren’t sure if they will clerk.
  • 19% of respondents said they do not plan to clerk.

Law school respondents were almost evenly split on whether clerkship bonus amounts affect their decision of whether to clerk:

  • 55% of respondents said clerkship bonuses paid by firms have an impact on their decision to clerk.
  • 45% of respondents said clerkship bonuses paid by firms do not have an impact on their
    decision to clerk.

As always, we encourage to send information about your law firm experience to careercenter@abovethelaw.com.

Earlier: What’s Up with Clerkship Bonuses?

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