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In today’s post, we are highlighting how the summers at this week’s five most popular firms feel about their summer programs. We are also still collecting responses for our 2010 Summer Associate Survey and encourage current summer associates to please take our short survey.

  • You won’t have to explain the impact that this well-known law firm has had on the legal employment market to your classmates. Don’t expect 5-star lunches everyday as a summer associate, but don’t be surprised if it happens a couple of times throughout the summer. 
  • All summer associates at this international law firm received full-time offers last year. Even more impressive, none of them were deferred. But be sure to have your passport handy, though; it is not uncommon for summer associates to work part of the summer in an overseas office or two.
  • Summer associates attend litigation or transactional training institutes and experience a free-market work environment at this Chicago-based law firm. Anticipate a lot of flexibility in your assignments, but don’t except any hand-holding.
  • Associates at this Texas-based law firm can afford to buy more than a 3500 sq ft house and a Lexus with its top-of-the-market salary levels. Summer associates will also have plenty of time to get a nice tan as folks here leave the office before 6 p.m., and weekend work is as rare as the steaks you’ll be eating at a firm-sponsored BBQ.
  • Southern hospitality and decent work hours will greet you at this Georgia big law firm. But there will be more to your summer experience here than buckets of sweet tea and peaches. Summer associates select a department rotation and will experience a very structured and substantive summer program.

Want to know more about the summer program at other Big Law firms, or see the feedback left by former summer associates at the firm you are currently summering at or hoping to interview with in fall recruiting? Please visit the Career Center, powered by Lateral Link, for the inside track on each leading law firm.

Thanks to this week’s advertisers on Above the Law:

If you’re interested in advertising on Above the Law or any other site in the Breaking Media network, download our media kits, or email advertising@breakingmedia.com. Thanks!

The good old days of Biglaw summer associate programs have now become the stuff of legend. Long gone are the days of doing doc review at the beach, unlimited lunches on the firm’s tab, swanky social events, and 100% offers for full-time employment.

Instead, today’s typical summer associate program has been streamlined down to 8 to 10 weeks, reduced the size of its class (by 50 percent or even 80 percent), and adopted new cost-saving rules for meals and entertainment.

We want to hear from you about what your experience has been like under this new paradigm. If you are a 2010 summer associate, please click here to complete a short survey, which will be kept completely confidential.

Feel free to use this opportunity to dish all about your firm’s work assignments, facetime requirements, meal budgets, and events – whether good, bad, or indifferent. Survey results will be posted on the Career Center — just in time to help you, your colleagues, or potential summer associates make some important career choices. Thanks!

Now that we have kicked off the 2010 Summer Associate Satisfaction Survey, we wanted to share with you some of the highlights from the reports on the 2009 firm summer programs. If you are a current summer associateclick here to take our short survey about your experiences this summer at your firm.

  • The summer associate program at this Silicon Valley firm begins with a kickoff weekend at the Seascape Resort in Aptos, California, where, in addition to social events, the firm holds trainings and various practice group workshops.
  • This Washington, D.C.-based firm offers summer associates the chance to participate in its Public Interest Fellowship program, and split their time between the firm and local public service organizations for five weeks at full salary.
  • Summer associates at this Philadelphia-based firm, which recently opened a Moscow office, are paired not only with a partner and associate guide, but also a writing mentor.
  • All 14 of this "global" firm’s domestic offices have summer associate programs, and summer associate positions are also available in locations outside the U.S.

Additional summer program highlights, which might give you some good ideas to use at your firm, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Career Center: A Report on 2009 Summer Programs”

Thanks to this week’s advertisers on Above the Law:

If you’re interested in advertising on Above the Law or any other site in the Breaking Media network, download our media kits, or email advertising@breakingmedia.com. Thanks!

We are updating the Career Center and want to know what you think of your summer program.  Are the attorneys at your firm screamers or camp counselors? Are you eating at 5-star restaurants, or splitting meals from the Dollar Menu at McDonalds? Are you working on the next mega-merger, or picking up a partner’s dry cleaning?

Let us know about your firm and its summer associate program by taking the short but substantive Lateral Link Summer Associate Survey. The survey should only take you five minutes and is completely anonymous. Gloat about your experiences or warn law students about the real summer associate life. Your responses will give future summer associates the "I-wish-I-knew-those-answers-before-I-joined" information about the firm that isn’t on the recruiting brochures.

Click here to start the survey.

After you complete the survey, feel free to visit the Career Center and review what the current associates at the nation’s top firms think about their experience.

Just a quick reminder that the Above the Law summer cocktail party, brought to you by ATL and the Practical Law Company, is taking place tonight. You’re cordially invited to enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres with the ATL editors and your fellow readers. The details:

Monday, July 12, 2010
6 PM – whenever
Amity Hall (80 West 3rd Street, New York, NY 10012)

The event is free, but space is limited, with priority given to summer associates and law students. Please RSVP by email, to rsvp@abovethelaw.com. (We’re almost at capacity, but we still have a few more spots.)

Thanks. We hope to see you tonight!

Thanks to this week’s advertisers on Above the Law:

If you’re interested in advertising on Above the Law or any other site in the Breaking Media network, download our media kits, or email advertising@breakingmedia.com. Thanks!

Welcome to the next in our series on the results of the 2010 ATL/Career Center Associate Satisfaction survey. We’ve used the survey results to revamp the Career Center, powered by Lateral Link, with completely updated profiles. Each week, we are highlighting insider information that Members shared about their firms in the eight key areas of associate satisfaction covered by the Career Center.

Today, we look at how your firm and others measure up in one very important aspect: Billable Hours.

  • This Texas-based firm, with one of the world’s leading energy practices, does not have a billable hours requirement, although bonus amounts are contingent upon meeting certain hours thresholds.
  • While this "top-notch" New York-based firm has no official billable hours requirement, Lateral Link Members report that the unofficial expectation is between 2,100 and 2,400 hours. 
  • This California-based firm, which focuses on intellectual property, has an unusual billing system based on "billed, not billable, hours," and although the billable minimum is only 1,700 hours, hours "recorded but not billed out to the client are disregarded." 
  • First-year associates at this East Coast firm are required to bill 1,900 hours per year, while other associates are required to bill 1,950 hours, a requirement that Members concur is “attainable and reasonable.”

More highlights — check to see if your firm is featured — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Career Center: Billable Hours – Firms Vary Wildly”

We’ve mentioned it before, but since it’s just a few days away, we wanted to issue a reminder about the Above the Law summer soiree. It’s taking place this coming Monday here in New York. You’re cordially invited to come have drinks and hors d’oeuvres with the ATL editors and your fellow readers.

The party is hosted by Above the Law and the Practical Law Company. Here are the details:

Monday, July 12, 2010
6 PM – whenever
Amity Hall (80 West 3rd Street, New York, NY 10012)

The event is free, but space is limited, with priority given to summer associates and law students. Please RSVP by email, to rsvp@abovethelaw.com.

Thanks. We look forward to seeing you on the 12th.

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