Fall Legal Recruiting Activities Remain Steady

The pace of recruiting remained brisk during the fall of 2000, according to Perspectives on Fall 2000 Law Student Recruiting, an annual review of selected aspects of fall season recruitment activity and experiences of both legal employers and law schools published by NALP. Among the additional findings:

OCI Activity

Most law schools reported more employers on campus, and 40% of law firms reported visiting more schools in their recruiting efforts. The nationwide median number of schools at which employers recruited was eight, with almost half of the largest firms and those reporting from the Southeast and West increasing the number of schools they visited.

Nationwide, 72% of law schools reported an increase in the number of employers on campus and almost one-fourth reported an increase of more than 15%. At the same time, about 28% of schools reported a decrease. Regional variations are apparent, however, with relatively few schools in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions reporting an increase of more than 15% and relatively few schools in the West reporting a decrease.

Job Fairs

Nearly all responding schools participated in one or more job fairs, and one-third participated in eight or more. Firms in the Midwest were most likely to participate in job fairs; firms in the Southeast were least likely to do so. Schools in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions were most likely by far to participate in eight or more job fairs — 59% and 69% respectively. In contrast, just one in five schools in the Southeast and West reported that level of participation. About 36% of responding employers did not participate in any job fairs. However a similar percentage, 40%, reported participating in two or more.

Callbacks, Offers and Acceptances

Most summer program participants — 90% — received an offer for an associate position and 66% of these offers were accepted. The median class size for summer programs was 8.5. Summer programs were the largest by far in New York City, Philadelphia, and Dallas, with medians in these cities two times the national figure or more.

Employers issued a median of 55 callback invitations each to second-year students. Nationwide, about three-fourths of these callback invitations were accepted. About 63% of callback interviews resulted in an offer, with a median of 22 offers per employer. About one in three of these offers to Class of 2002 students for the upcoming summer program was accepted.

For large firms of 501 or more attorneys, 68% of callback invitations to second-year students resulted in offers, compared with 44% in firms of 100 or fewer attorneys. However acceptance rates were higher at firms of 100 or fewer attorneys and offices with 50 or fewer attorneys (37%), compared with about 30% in larger firms.

Analyses at the city level reveal wide variations. For example, employers in New York City reported by far the highest level of activity in callback invitations and interviews of second-year students, making an average of 136 offers to second-years for summer 2001. Acceptance rates to offers for summer employment were lowest at firms in New York and Chicago, where about one-quarter of offers were accepted, and highest in Houston and Denver, where about half of offers were accepted.

Recruiting of third-year students not previously employed by the employer was reported by 234 employers. The median number of callback invitations was eight, and 84% of these callback invitations were accepted. About 45% of these interviews resulted in offers, of which half were accepted. New York employers also reported the highest number of callback invitations to third-year students, but were surpassed by offices in Philadelphia in terms of the number of offers extended to third-year students. Acceptance rates ranged from 40% in Orange County, California to about two-thirds in Boston and Dallas.

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