Duke OCI 2018

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Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 07, 2018 5:24 pm

Anyone?

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 07, 2018 6:10 pm

I'm game

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 07, 2018 7:19 pm

As a fairly recent alum, career services is going to tell you to ignore pre-oci. Do not listen. Myself and a few friends got pre-oci offers but struck out at OCI. Especially if you are targeting hard markets like DC. If you dont get a DC offer pre-oci, it is very hard to get one during OCI. Classes get filled. Career services will say the opposite, but trust me.

Mass mail and network your ass off. Protect yourself, especially if you are not top 20%. Most people will get biglaw, but if you want a specific market not named NYC or you are under the top 20%, do your work before OCI.

Also, dont be the person who is at below median who thinks you can just bid DC or Chicago or LA/SF and get biglaw. Because you will not. As OCI gets closer, the more they will start nudging you into NYC even if you do not want it purely because that is where the largest classes are. Just as a word of advice.

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 07, 2018 9:29 pm

Anonymous User wrote:As a fairly recent alum, career services is going to tell you to ignore pre-oci. Do not listen. Myself and a few friends got pre-oci offers but struck out at OCI. Especially if you are targeting hard markets like DC. If you dont get a DC offer pre-oci, it is very hard to get one during OCI. Classes get filled. Career services will say the opposite, but trust me.

Mass mail and network your ass off. Protect yourself, especially if you are not top 20%. Most people will get biglaw, but if you want a specific market not named NYC or you are under the top 20%, do your work before OCI.

Also, dont be the person who is at below median who thinks you can just bid DC or Chicago or LA/SF and get biglaw. Because you will not. As OCI gets closer, the more they will start nudging you into NYC even if you do not want it purely because that is where the largest classes are. Just as a word of advice.


Because I’m interested in a non-NYC major market, could you talk a little about how you went about doing pre-OCI? How’d you reach out, when’d it start, etc.? Would be helpful

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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 07, 2018 9:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:As a fairly recent alum, career services is going to tell you to ignore pre-oci. Do not listen. Myself and a few friends got pre-oci offers but struck out at OCI. Especially if you are targeting hard markets like DC. If you dont get a DC offer pre-oci, it is very hard to get one during OCI. Classes get filled. Career services will say the opposite, but trust me.

Mass mail and network your ass off. Protect yourself, especially if you are not top 20%. Most people will get biglaw, but if you want a specific market not named NYC or you are under the top 20%, do your work before OCI.

Also, dont be the person who is at below median who thinks you can just bid DC or Chicago or LA/SF and get biglaw. Because you will not. As OCI gets closer, the more they will start nudging you into NYC even if you do not want it purely because that is where the largest classes are. Just as a word of advice.


Because I’m interested in a non-NYC major market, could you talk a little about how you went about doing pre-OCI? How’d you reach out, when’d it start, etc.? Would be helpful


Same poster. Now that grades are out, you need to be reaching out to alumni at the firms in the market you want along with mass mailing other markets. I was in DC for my 1l summer and it was the market I was targeting, so my advice follows if you are in the same market right now working that you want to be. But no worries if you aren't, just need to modify a little.

You need to start immediately sending blast emails to all the Duke alums at the firms in the market. Introduce yourself as a Duke law student and ask if they have time to meet for coffee, lunch, or talk on the phone (obviously what you would do if you aren't in the market right now) and ask to talk to them so you can learn about their practice and their firm. The key is you are seeking information from them to learn, not pushing your own resume directly. I probably mailed out 100+ of these emails and ended up with 40-50 coffees/lunches and calls over June. Out of those 40-50, about half asked for my resume after the meeting and it got me something like 5 callbacks in the end of june/early july and netted multiple offers. As a median student in the most competitive market, this was my only path forward. I did not want NYC.

The goal is to meet and talk to as many alums as possible. They will want to help. Learn something about their work and their firm. That networking already puts you ahead of the vast majority of your classmates. Worst comes to worse that gives you info for OCI and you can say "Oh I've talked to person X about these things at your firm".

For the next few weeks, your immediate goal is to network with as many people as possible and prepare your cover letters for that market as well as other markets. Start mass mailing other markets like NY. More and more NY firms are going to pre-oci. But hustle your face off with the market you want. At peak June, I was having coffee before work with someone, coffee/lunch with another, and a call or two a night with other associates/partners. I kept a notebook full of this info and it was a true lifesaver.

Edit: Just as an aside, I did this a few years ago when pre-oci was just starting. Now it moves even faster/growing into markets that it wasn't happening before. People will have offers by the end of June. You need to send as many networking emails in the next 24/48 hours as possible. Start scheduling these calls/meet ups. Also start mass mailing now that you have grades. You can always say in your email/cover letter you dont have a journal assignment yet and this gives you a reason to follow up in a month anyways. But the clock is officially ticking now that grades are out. No time to delay.

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:20 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:As a fairly recent alum, career services is going to tell you to ignore pre-oci. Do not listen. Myself and a few friends got pre-oci offers but struck out at OCI. Especially if you are targeting hard markets like DC. If you dont get a DC offer pre-oci, it is very hard to get one during OCI. Classes get filled. Career services will say the opposite, but trust me.

Mass mail and network your ass off. Protect yourself, especially if you are not top 20%. Most people will get biglaw, but if you want a specific market not named NYC or you are under the top 20%, do your work before OCI.

Also, dont be the person who is at below median who thinks you can just bid DC or Chicago or LA/SF and get biglaw. Because you will not. As OCI gets closer, the more they will start nudging you into NYC even if you do not want it purely because that is where the largest classes are. Just as a word of advice.


Because I’m interested in a non-NYC major market, could you talk a little about how you went about doing pre-OCI? How’d you reach out, when’d it start, etc.? Would be helpful


Same poster. Now that grades are out, you need to be reaching out to alumni at the firms in the market you want along with mass mailing other markets. I was in DC for my 1l summer and it was the market I was targeting, so my advice follows if you are in the same market right now working that you want to be. But no worries if you aren't, just need to modify a little.

You need to start immediately sending blast emails to all the Duke alums at the firms in the market. Introduce yourself as a Duke law student and ask if they have time to meet for coffee, lunch, or talk on the phone (obviously what you would do if you aren't in the market right now) and ask to talk to them so you can learn about their practice and their firm. The key is you are seeking information from them to learn, not pushing your own resume directly. I probably mailed out 100+ of these emails and ended up with 40-50 coffees/lunches and calls over June. Out of those 40-50, about half asked for my resume after the meeting and it got me something like 5 callbacks in the end of june/early july and netted multiple offers. As a median student in the most competitive market, this was my only path forward. I did not want NYC.

The goal is to meet and talk to as many alums as possible. They will want to help. Learn something about their work and their firm. That networking already puts you ahead of the vast majority of your classmates. Worst comes to worse that gives you info for OCI and you can say "Oh I've talked to person X about these things at your firm".

For the next few weeks, your immediate goal is to network with as many people as possible and prepare your cover letters for that market as well as other markets. Start mass mailing other markets like NY. More and more NY firms are going to pre-oci. But hustle your face off with the market you want. At peak June, I was having coffee before work with someone, coffee/lunch with another, and a call or two a night with other associates/partners. I kept a notebook full of this info and it was a true lifesaver.

Edit: Just as an aside, I did this a few years ago when pre-oci was just starting. Now it moves even faster/growing into markets that it wasn't happening before. People will have offers by the end of June. You need to send as many networking emails in the next 24/48 hours as possible. Start scheduling these calls/meet ups. Also start mass mailing now that you have grades. You can always say in your email/cover letter you dont have a journal assignment yet and this gives you a reason to follow up in a month anyways. But the clock is officially ticking now that grades are out. No time to delay.


What about if you're top 25%? Say I'm in Chicago and top 25%, should I reach out to the major firms like Sidley and Kirkland and try and get offers/callbacks pre-OCI?

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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:As a fairly recent alum, career services is going to tell you to ignore pre-oci. Do not listen. Myself and a few friends got pre-oci offers but struck out at OCI. Especially if you are targeting hard markets like DC. If you dont get a DC offer pre-oci, it is very hard to get one during OCI. Classes get filled. Career services will say the opposite, but trust me.

Mass mail and network your ass off. Protect yourself, especially if you are not top 20%. Most people will get biglaw, but if you want a specific market not named NYC or you are under the top 20%, do your work before OCI.

Also, dont be the person who is at below median who thinks you can just bid DC or Chicago or LA/SF and get biglaw. Because you will not. As OCI gets closer, the more they will start nudging you into NYC even if you do not want it purely because that is where the largest classes are. Just as a word of advice.


Because I’m interested in a non-NYC major market, could you talk a little about how you went about doing pre-OCI? How’d you reach out, when’d it start, etc.? Would be helpful


Same poster. Now that grades are out, you need to be reaching out to alumni at the firms in the market you want along with mass mailing other markets. I was in DC for my 1l summer and it was the market I was targeting, so my advice follows if you are in the same market right now working that you want to be. But no worries if you aren't, just need to modify a little.

You need to start immediately sending blast emails to all the Duke alums at the firms in the market. Introduce yourself as a Duke law student and ask if they have time to meet for coffee, lunch, or talk on the phone (obviously what you would do if you aren't in the market right now) and ask to talk to them so you can learn about their practice and their firm. The key is you are seeking information from them to learn, not pushing your own resume directly. I probably mailed out 100+ of these emails and ended up with 40-50 coffees/lunches and calls over June. Out of those 40-50, about half asked for my resume after the meeting and it got me something like 5 callbacks in the end of june/early july and netted multiple offers. As a median student in the most competitive market, this was my only path forward. I did not want NYC.

The goal is to meet and talk to as many alums as possible. They will want to help. Learn something about their work and their firm. That networking already puts you ahead of the vast majority of your classmates. Worst comes to worse that gives you info for OCI and you can say "Oh I've talked to person X about these things at your firm".

For the next few weeks, your immediate goal is to network with as many people as possible and prepare your cover letters for that market as well as other markets. Start mass mailing other markets like NY. More and more NY firms are going to pre-oci. But hustle your face off with the market you want. At peak June, I was having coffee before work with someone, coffee/lunch with another, and a call or two a night with other associates/partners. I kept a notebook full of this info and it was a true lifesaver.

Edit: Just as an aside, I did this a few years ago when pre-oci was just starting. Now it moves even faster/growing into markets that it wasn't happening before. People will have offers by the end of June. You need to send as many networking emails in the next 24/48 hours as possible. Start scheduling these calls/meet ups. Also start mass mailing now that you have grades. You can always say in your email/cover letter you dont have a journal assignment yet and this gives you a reason to follow up in a month anyways. But the clock is officially ticking now that grades are out. No time to delay.


What about if you're top 25%? Say I'm in Chicago and top 25%, should I reach out to the major firms like Sidley and Kirkland and try and get offers/callbacks pre-OCI?


You should be reaching out to everyone in Chicago now.

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:01 am

Where's everyone bidding/hoping for?

I'm split on TX/DC/NY

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:03 am

I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?

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Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:42 am

Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.

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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:25 am

Agreed with the poster above. I was well below median and got offers in SF and Los Angeles through constant networking over the summer. Everybody at Duke gets a job, but the ones that manage to get the job they really want have to work a little more to make it happen. OCI is only one week, and there's no reason to wait until then to interview with firms.

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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:19 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Thanks for the info in this thread. I’ve begun to digest it all and am going to start emailing people for informational calls/lunch/coffee.

Do you recommend doing the informational interview part first? Or can emails to firms with cover letters be simultaneous? I figure knowing people in an office first can help if I want to mention them in cover letters or interviews. And when I do apply to stuff, is it through the NALP contact? Or should I wait on that and see first see if people ask for my resume.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:51 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Thanks for the info in this thread. I’ve begun to digest it all and am going to start emailing people for informational calls/lunch/coffee.

Do you recommend doing the informational interview part first? Or can emails to firms with cover letters be simultaneous? I figure knowing people in an office first can help if I want to mention them in cover letters or interviews. And when I do apply to stuff, is it through the NALP contact? Or should I wait on that and see first see if people ask for my resume.



Another recent alum checking in, I recommend doing the informational interview first for the exact reason you mentioned "knowing people in an office first can help." What I found is whether the person I reached out to asked for my cover letter or not, they did mention my name to recruiting. Hey, I spoke to X at Duke and XYZ." I can't tell you how many times I was in an interview and someone said "I saw you spoke with X in our ABC office." It shows early interest and initiative. I will also say this, I was below median heading into OCI, very below, but I outplayed my GPA by a landslide and I attribute that to networking via informational meetings throughout the summer. It is possible to get a job you want from below median. Career services will tell you otherwise, but you the key is to hustle and hustle hard. Do Pre-OCI and talk to people!

In terms of applying, I always ask the contact I spoke with "is there anyone else at your firm I should speak with." This is a subtle way of asking who should I get my cover letter in front of now. I applied through the NALP contacts for firm hiring as well as any online application submission system the firms had. I would do both, especially if you don't get a reply from the NALP contact. But again this is where having a contact inside the firm helps, b/c if you don't get acknowledgment you can reach out to your contact and they can sometimes be helpful in following-up.

Good Luck, OCI happens then it's over!

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:59 am

just an fyi - duke alums love duke. and when i say duke alums, that includes undergrads.

be mindful of that. don't look past duke undergrads, even in your job search. networking with them will help too.

Anonymous User
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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:08 am

Anonymous User wrote:Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Recent graduate here. This is 100% true. I was above median by a fair amount with DLJ. I targeted DC with basically zero ties, and I put in zero effort before OCI. I almost got totally hung out to dry. I was fortunate to get with one of the firms I really wanted, but literally all of the others left me behind for one reason or another. My OCI experience was perilously close to being a complete failure, and it was because I didn't put in the work earlier.

If I could do it again? I would start searching, talking, mailing, etc. well before OCI. This applies doubly if you are around or below median or if you are targeting a market that isn't NYC. You should be making those moves right now if that describes you. It's gonna be a lot of work, but it's also gonna be over in a few months, so just do it now.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Thanks for the info in this thread. I’ve begun to digest it all and am going to start emailing people for informational calls/lunch/coffee.

Do you recommend doing the informational interview part first? Or can emails to firms with cover letters be simultaneous? I figure knowing people in an office first can help if I want to mention them in cover letters or interviews. And when I do apply to stuff, is it through the NALP contact? Or should I wait on that and see first see if people ask for my resume.



Another recent alum checking in, I recommend doing the informational interview first for the exact reason you mentioned "knowing people in an office first can help." What I found is whether the person I reached out to asked for my cover letter or not, they did mention my name to recruiting. Hey, I spoke to X at Duke and XYZ." I can't tell you how many times I was in an interview and someone said "I saw you spoke with X in our ABC office." It shows early interest and initiative. I will also say this, I was below median heading into OCI, very below, but I outplayed my GPA by a landslide and I attribute that to networking via informational meetings throughout the summer. It is possible to get a job you want from below median. Career services will tell you otherwise, but you the key is to hustle and hustle hard. Do Pre-OCI and talk to people!

In terms of applying, I always ask the contact I spoke with "is there anyone else at your firm I should speak with." This is a subtle way of asking who should I get my cover letter in front of now. I applied through the NALP contacts for firm hiring as well as any online application submission system the firms had. I would do both, especially if you don't get a reply from the NALP contact. But again this is where having a contact inside the firm helps, b/c if you don't get acknowledgment you can reach out to your contact and they can sometimes be helpful in following-up.

Good Luck, OCI happens then it's over!

did you put your GPA on your resume when mass mailing?

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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:18 am

Any suggestions on how much to bid NY to be safe if you're top quarter/third and want a major non-NY market?

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Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Thanks for the info in this thread. I’ve begun to digest it all and am going to start emailing people for informational calls/lunch/coffee.

Do you recommend doing the informational interview part first? Or can emails to firms with cover letters be simultaneous? I figure knowing people in an office first can help if I want to mention them in cover letters or interviews. And when I do apply to stuff, is it through the NALP contact? Or should I wait on that and see first see if people ask for my resume.



Another recent alum checking in, I recommend doing the informational interview first for the exact reason you mentioned "knowing people in an office first can help." What I found is whether the person I reached out to asked for my cover letter or not, they did mention my name to recruiting. Hey, I spoke to X at Duke and XYZ." I can't tell you how many times I was in an interview and someone said "I saw you spoke with X in our ABC office." It shows early interest and initiative. I will also say this, I was below median heading into OCI, very below, but I outplayed my GPA by a landslide and I attribute that to networking via informational meetings throughout the summer. It is possible to get a job you want from below median. Career services will tell you otherwise, but you the key is to hustle and hustle hard. Do Pre-OCI and talk to people!

In terms of applying, I always ask the contact I spoke with "is there anyone else at your firm I should speak with." This is a subtle way of asking who should I get my cover letter in front of now. I applied through the NALP contacts for firm hiring as well as any online application submission system the firms had. I would do both, especially if you don't get a reply from the NALP contact. But again this is where having a contact inside the firm helps, b/c if you don't get acknowledgment you can reach out to your contact and they can sometimes be helpful in following-up.

Good Luck, OCI happens then it's over!

did you put your GPA on your resume when mass mailing?


I put my GPA on my resume when mass mailing. Why delay the inevitable? Or force them to email you asking for your GPA? Be confident in the rest of your resume. I also second the advice of reaching out to people at firms with Duke undergraduate connections. Frankly, just use any tie you can find to associates/partners for informational interviews. The worst thing that can happen is they don't reply to your email.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:10 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I want DC or West Coast, but since my grades are a little below median, I feel I should mostly go for NY. Strong resume though except for grades. Of course, my grades are below median of mostly every firm, so I guess I’ll check class sizes and whatnot. *sigh* this sucks. I don’t want to end up unemployed, but I don’t want NY.

I am starting to set up coffee and stuff with people, but I am hesitant to believe I am smooth enough to land a magical offer in DC pre-OCI with my grades.

These other posters are giving me a heart attack. It feels like the world is closing in on me, and my fight or flight is activating.

It seems like every at Duke ends up with a good offer, but what if I am that person that doesn’t?


Previous poster who discussed mass mailing. Honestly, I was below median and got DC a few years ago. I networked and mailed my ass off all summer. You need to start realizing if you want DC or the West Coast, you need to be putting in the work right now. Fight. I was told by career services that I would have no prayer getting DC. I didn't wait until OCI when I knew I would be out of the running. I hustled my face off. And it worked. Not a lot, but I was below median at the time and got DC biglaw. You need to stop worrying, start networking aggressively and start mailing aggressively. IF you dont, you could easily be one of the people who dont get biglaw.

Here is another truth: people with better grades than you can and will strike out at OCI. It happened my year to more than one of my friends. Guess what? They waited until OCI. My friends at or below median who got their target markets (not NYC)? They fought and networked and worked their asses off and all got biglaw in the cities they wanted. You choose.


Thanks for the info in this thread. I’ve begun to digest it all and am going to start emailing people for informational calls/lunch/coffee.

Do you recommend doing the informational interview part first? Or can emails to firms with cover letters be simultaneous? I figure knowing people in an office first can help if I want to mention them in cover letters or interviews. And when I do apply to stuff, is it through the NALP contact? Or should I wait on that and see first see if people ask for my resume.



Another recent alum checking in, I recommend doing the informational interview first for the exact reason you mentioned "knowing people in an office first can help." What I found is whether the person I reached out to asked for my cover letter or not, they did mention my name to recruiting. Hey, I spoke to X at Duke and XYZ." I can't tell you how many times I was in an interview and someone said "I saw you spoke with X in our ABC office." It shows early interest and initiative. I will also say this, I was below median heading into OCI, very below, but I outplayed my GPA by a landslide and I attribute that to networking via informational meetings throughout the summer. It is possible to get a job you want from below median. Career services will tell you otherwise, but you the key is to hustle and hustle hard. Do Pre-OCI and talk to people!

In terms of applying, I always ask the contact I spoke with "is there anyone else at your firm I should speak with." This is a subtle way of asking who should I get my cover letter in front of now. I applied through the NALP contacts for firm hiring as well as any online application submission system the firms had. I would do both, especially if you don't get a reply from the NALP contact. But again this is where having a contact inside the firm helps, b/c if you don't get acknowledgment you can reach out to your contact and they can sometimes be helpful in following-up.

Good Luck, OCI happens then it's over!

did you put your GPA on your resume when mass mailing?


I put my GPA on my resume when mass mailing. Why delay the inevitable? Or force them to email you asking for your GPA? Be confident in the rest of your resume. I also second the advice of reaching out to people at firms with Duke undergraduate connections. Frankly, just use any tie you can find to associates/partners for informational interviews. The worst thing that can happen is they don't reply to your email.

I always attach my transcript. I just don't want firms to trash my app before looking at the rest of my resume.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:50 pm

So my undergrad grades were not very good (3.2X), but I did well this first year (3.52). Do folks think it is best to put undergrad GPA on the resume or leave it off?

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:08 am

Bump.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:29 am

Anonymous User wrote:So my undergrad grades were not very good (3.2X), but I did well this first year (3.52). Do folks think it is best to put undergrad GPA on the resume or leave it off?


Nobody cares about undergrad grades. If anything, if you have a weaker undergrad record and you still got into (and did well) at Duke it communicates that the school made the right call about admitting you.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 05, 2018 1:25 am

Would any rising 3Ls be willing to share info on when journal assignments come out? Just wondering when I may be able to update my resume and if it's going to be before bidding/add-drop. Thanks!

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:23 am

Anonymous User wrote:Would any rising 3Ls be willing to share info on when journal assignments come out? Just wondering when I may be able to update my resume and if it's going to be before bidding/add-drop. Thanks!


I received my journal email on July 22 last year, though I have heard there were some unusual delays that made it a bit later than usual. I know they are trying to get assignments out sooner this year, but I have no idea when they are coming out. I would plan for mid-to-late July.

Anonymous User
Posts: 325902
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Duke OCI 2018

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 05, 2018 12:24 pm

Any insight on DC firm cutoffs? Which are "soft" cutoffs, which are "hard">



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