Law Grads Underestimate Job Hunt

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The job hunt for law grads may be more difficult than expected.

While the job market for new lawyers is stronger than ever, a new Kaplan Bar Review survey finds that a majority of law grads say the job search process takes more time than they anticipated.

“The job market for newly graduated lawyers has not been this strong since the start of the Great Recession, which is promising, but that doesn’t mean that jobs are just going to fall into their laps. It requires networking, starting the process early, and often passing the bar exam, as many employers won’t hire you until you’ve secured your license,” Tammi Rice, vice president of Kaplan Bar Review, says.

MORE TIME THAN ANTICIPATED

Kaplan surveyed 417 newly-graduated JDs. Of that number, 52% say the job search process required “more time than they anticipated.” Only 11% responded that the job search process required “less time than they anticipated.” 37% said the search required about the amount of time they anticipated.

“Career planning and job search begins during your 1L summer,” one surveyed grad says. “If you learn like I did that you enjoy other aspects of the law you need to network to get where you need to go.”

CAREER SERVICES HELPFUL

Kaplan also surveyed grads on how they viewed the helpfulness of their law school’s career services.

For the most part, many grads are pleased with their school’s career services.

23% awarded their law school’s career services an “A”. Another 30% awarded a “B”, with 23% conferring a “C”. Below average grades accounted for the remaining 25%, divided between a D (14%) and an F (11%).

“We encourage all recent law school graduates to take advantage of the resources and guidance your alma mater’s career services office can provide you,” Rice says. “They have a vested interest in seeing their graduates succeed, so they want to be helpful as you look to land a job that requires that you passed the bar.”

Sources: Kaplan, Above The Law