Clifford Gravett, 3L: How I Got My Job for After Graduation


Where will you be working after you graduate and what will you be doing?

Nevada (Las Vegas area), clerking for a state court judge.  In an office–it doesn’t have any windows, but hey, it’s an office.


When and how did you first make contact with your employer?


Searching the Intercollegiate Job Bank.  The job was not listed with the U, but it was at other schools in the West.  Notably, other schools south of us.


How did you get the job?

I mailed in an application, which was the only way they were accepted.  I think there were fewer applicants for the job because of the mailing requirement than there would have been if an e-mailed resume would have been enough (I was one of less than a hundred applicants rather than one in a over thousand).


The court clerk then contacted me for an interview.  At the interview I dazzled the Judge and his personal assistant with my personality and freshly shined shoes.  Or at least I managed not to throw up on myself, which for me was a considerable accomplishment.  Jedi mind tricks may also have played a role.


What kinds of things do you think helped you land you job?  Experience in law school, something else?

The most important thing was a willingness to look outside of Utah where my school and background were more of a comparative advantage than they would have been in-state.  Broad experiences were also important, I did a number of different clinics in several areas of the law, including family law, criminal, and general civil law.  This was helpful since the Judge was looking for someone with broad experience.  Blind luck also played a considerable role.  Also, having shined shoes probably contributed.


What tips do you have for students who are job seeking?

Apply early and often.  I received many (at least 50, likely more) rejection letters, or even worse, nothing, before receiving an offer.


Shine your shoes right before the interview.


Practice those Jedi mind tricks.


Honestly though, I didn’t do anything different on this application than I did in 100 others, I have no idea why it worked out.  We all know the right things to do, PDO has told us everything we need to know.  It’s a frustrating, dismal market and it takes time.


Takeaways (from PDO)

  1. Don’t simply search for jobs on Symplicity–take advantage of reciprocity requests and the Intercollegiate Job Bank (especially if you are open to jobs out of state)—click this link  Username and password are in the “PDO Passwords” Document in the Document Library in Symplicity.
  2. Be flexible in where you are looking.  If you would be willing to move to say, Nevada, open up your job search to Nevada.
  3. Don’t give up.  It’s a tough market out there, but you have to make your job search part of your regular routine.