Nailing a Law School Internship Interview

Hello friends... it's been a while. This semester has been kicking my butt.... I am on my last day of Spring Break and just now feeling a touch caught up on life and school. Blogging has been on the backburner lately but I am back at it for today!

Today I am talking interviews- law school interview season is in full swing. Internships are so important but they can be so hard to secure- especially after your 1L year. Below are my tips for nailing your law school internship interview. Interviews and securing an internship is so important for your career so it is best to nail it!

1. Dress for Success
First impressions are EVERYTHING. Dress in a way that presents the image you hope to project: polished, professional and confident. A few things I do whenever I am dressing for an interview or first day of a job:
  • Iron everything- nothing makes you look frumpy faster than wrinkles
  • Light perfume- you do not want to leave them in a cloud smelling like flowers
  • Lay everything out the day before and do a trial try on- I hate to leave ANYTHING to chance the day of my interview
  • Make sure your bag doesn't clash with your outfit 
  • After you are dressed, ask yourself this question when you look in the mirror: would my gradisagreer disgree with anything I am wearing? If the answer is yes, change. If the answer is no, proceed to the interview.
What to actually wear? Here is a handy chart to help both the ladies and gentlemen!

2. Do Some Homework 
Make sure you know something about the firm/company/office you are interviewing with. Look up the people you will be interviewing with and make sure that you have some background. It is important to understand what you are walking into and some of what to expect. This can also help you to prepare some questions for the interviewers because they very well may ask you if you have any questions for them and it looks good to have a few.

3. Firm Handshake
Seriously, if I shake one more hand that feels like a dead fish I am going to scream. Practice a FIRM handshake. I do not mean crush the bones in the hand you are shaking but you need to have a little grip and show through this handshake that you mean business. It projects confidence and strength which is especially important as a woman in a field often dominated by men. Once again for the people in the back- FIRM handshake!

4. Be Yourself 
One of the worst things you can do in an interview is fake it. It is not worth it; you will slip up and make a fool of yourself. Or the fact that you are faking something will come across as unconfident and weak. Be yourself and project your professional self to the people interviewing you. They either like you for you and hire you or they don't. If you misrepresent yourself and get the job, eventually the misrepresentation will come out and you will look bad. Be honest, be real and be you.

5. Be Nice to Everyone 
A story my career services office always tells is of a law firm who would send a limo to pick up students for interviews. After the interview, the hiring attorneys would ask the chauffeur for their opinion of the student and how they treated the chauffeur. This is an important reminder that you must be nice and courteous to everyone you encounter be it the secretary, security guard or a partner in the firm. You want to leave a good impression on EVERYONE you encounter. In my first internship during my 1L summer, the secretary was married to the chief of the office. Had I left a poor impression on her, it very well could have been the difference between getting the internship or not.

6. Thank You Notes are Still a Thing 
After your interview, a great thing to remember is to send a short thank you note or email. This shows that you care and are thankful regardless of if you get the position or not. It may help to set you apart from the pack as well. Either way, it only takes a moment and can have a huge impact on the recipient. You can get a pack of Thank You notes super cheap at walmart or target and just keep them on hand.

Best of luck on the interviews!

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