All US-trained students considering a Non-Tax LLM degree are encouraged to call the Office of Career Services at (212) 998-6090 to set up a time to speak with one of our career counselors regarding the services provided and the opportunities for students in this category.
1. What job search support is provided to US-Trained, Non-Tax LLM students?
Students should refer to the LLM Career Curriculum for a full description of services for LLM candidates through the Office of Career Services.
2. How many employers contact NYU School of Law for someone with my specialty and background?
US-Trained LLM students, in programs other than the LLM in Taxation Program, seeking entry level associate positions usually apply for similar positions as third year JD students. Due, in part, to the small number of students and specialized nature of the LLM programs, most employers do not actively recruit students in the same way or with the same vigor in which they recruit JD and Taxation students. There is no formal On-Campus Interview program organized for students in this category, and employers have not historically requested to meet with US-Trained, Non-Tax LLM students through our larger OCI programs. The OCS works with students on an individual basis to contact individual employers directly and to research other opportunities that may be a fit for each student’s individual career goals.
All students should utilize a variety of job search strategies including networking, targeted mail campaigns, responding to advertised positions published by this office and elsewhere, notifying previous contacts of one’s current academic endeavors and employment goals, and seeking referrals from NYU School of Law faculty, alumni, and students. OCS career counselors are available to work with each LLM candidate on a one-on-one basis to determine his or her job search strategy.
3. How do students in the graduate division obtain jobs?
Students obtain employment through individual mailings, networking, NYU School of Law’s job listings, and referrals. The most frequently reported source of employment (i.e., the way in which a student initially learned of or made contact with the employer) is through email or other self-initiated contact with the employer.
The success of a student’s efforts strongly correlates to his or her performance at NYU School of Law, utilization of resources available through the OCS, and traditional job search activities outside of the OCS office. There is no specific or foolproof means for obtaining a position; the approaches vary and should reflect each student’s individual ambitions and qualifications. The OCS works with students to provide the tools for success in the legal market and determine a job search strategy that best suits each individual’s needs.
4. When do LLM students obtain job offers?
The demand for graduate students, particularly those pursuing specialized degrees, is not seasonal, and the OCS receives notices of job openings throughout the year. The job search will not be limited to the fall or spring seasons, but will involve year round effort on the part of the student and may extend beyond the completion of the LLM program. A small percentage of students obtain their jobs in the fall; however, most students obtain positions in the spring and later.
5. Where do LLM graduates work?
The majority of graduates in all specialties work in private practice. Increasingly, students are exploring a wider range of opportunities including government, judicial clerkships, law teaching, investment banking, and in-house opportunities at corporations. Corporations usually seek to hire attorneys with experience; therefore, very few corporations request resumes of entry-level graduates through OCS job listings. Although some LLM students have obtained positions with investment banks, these employers do not recruit law students in significant numbers. Students interested in careers in the public sector (non-profits, multilateral organizations, government, etc.) are advised to work with the Public Interest Law Center (PILC) for in-depth career guidance in this field.
The LLM degree opens doors for many students but cannot be counted on completely to determine one’s job search success. Individual factors such as your JD institution, prior experience, and academic performance, coupled with your professional goals and the current job market all play a role in the LLM job search.
6. Are there opportunities to work overseas?
We receive frequent requests for foreign-trained attorneys to return to their home country and a small number of requests each year for US-trained attorneys to work in foreign firms or foreign satellite offices of US firms on a short-term basis. We also receive a handful of listings for permanent positions overseas.
7. What are considered “respectable” grades in the LLM program?
Academic performance in a LLM program is an integral component of hiring decisions, and grading is based on a competitive bell-curve (wherein the vast majority of students receive grades in the mid-range, few students receive “below-average,” and few students receive “outstanding” marks). The NYU School of Law degree alone will not get you a job. For the most part, New York City law firms prefer grades above a B+ average (GPA) for the non-taxation specialties. Keep in mind that students who are accepted to NYU School of Law usually graduate in the top 25% of their JD classes and, therefore, the level of competition increases. To achieve the above-mentioned GPA, a student should expect to commit a great deal of time and effort to his or her studies.
8. Will the LLM degree increase my salary?
Employers’ policies regarding “credit” for the LLM degree vary widely. While employers sometimes award credit to LLM graduates in the non-taxation specialty areas, the majority do not give credit to graduates with no prior legal experience. When credit is given, graduates typically begin as a second year associate, at the second year salary, and with credit toward partnership. Please refer to the NALP Directory of Legal Employers (www.nalpdirectory.com) for salary information.
9. As a part-time LLM student, may I use the Office of Career Services?
Yes, however, students must meet a credit requirement before receiving services. A student has access to a number of services once he or she has completed 8 credits; all services become available once the student completes 16 credits and nears graduation. Please review this document for an outline describing OCS services for part-time students if you are interested in learning more.