Making the Most of Early Interview Week
By Lori Atherton
August 15, 2012
Rising 2Ls and 3Ls are gearing up for Early Interview Week (EIW), August 21–24 at the Ann Arbor Holiday Inn, where they'll have an opportunity to meet with potential employers representing almost 500 top law firms from around the country. Robin Kaplan, attorney-counselor in the Office of Career Planning (OCP), offers some last-minute advice to students on how to maximize their EIW experience.
Attend the EIW Orientation Meeting at 2 p.m., August 20, in Room 1225 South Hall. Sponsored by OCP, the meeting will provide students with important EIW details and reminders and will include representatives from participating EIW law firms. Students will be able to pick up copies of their transcripts before and after the program.
Review your resume and potential interview questions.
Check your interview schedule and email each night for updates. EIW changes can occur day to day, including cancellations and being moved up on a firm's wait list, so it's important for students to familiarize themselves with the changes and plan accordingly.
Increase your opportunity for interviews. Students should follow up with the employers with whom they did not receive an interview, to try and arrange a time to meet outside the official interview day. In addition, several firms have hospitality suites in the hotel, staffed with recruiters and/or attorneys, usually alumni, who are there to answer questions, Kaplan said. "It's a great time to meet people in a less formal setting," she said.
Continue to research law firms. Students are advised to learn as much as possible about the firms with whom they are interviewing. They should be prepared to answer why they want to work for that firm and in a particular geographical region or city, and why they are a good fit for the employer. "The more specific students can be, the better," Kaplan said. "Students should approach interviews like they approach exams—it's all about preparation."
Bring extra copies of your resume, transcript, references, and writing samples. Not every employer will ask for them, Kaplan noted, but students should have them on hand.
Be polished, professional, and enthusiastic at all times. Interviewees should be aware of what is said in public areas, including elevators, because they could be within earshot of potential employers.
Call (734.764.0546) or email OCP staff if you cannot attend an interview. No-shows are unprofessional, Kaplan said, and leave a poor impression on participating firms. If students cannot attend an interview because of an emergency, they should contact OCP immediately so the interview slot can be filled.
Visit the OCP staff suite. Career Planning counselors will be available at the hotel each day during EIW to answer questions and address issues and concerns, "whether it's sewing on a button, lending a jacket, or talking a student through an interview," Kaplan said. "We're here to help."
Early Interview Week is scheduled for August 21–24, 2012, at the Ann Arbor Holiday Inn on Plymouth Road near US-23. For more information, visit the Student Career Toolkit page, and click on the heading "On-Campus Interviewing."
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