How Important Is It To Get On Law Review?

And how important is it that you got on law review? Important enough that when you get shot in the chest by your dominatrix's jealous client, the entirety of your bio is this:

Madelaine Miller, a Paul Weiss spokeswoman, confirmed to the Philly paper that
Ottaviano started working for the firm on Sept. 11, 2006, and that he was a 1997
New York Law School graduate who worked on law review.

- ABA Journal

There are a lot of non-attorneys who read this blog, so here's a crash course in law school job hunting. To be a summer associate after your second year in law school, you have to interview at the very beginning of your second year. The only things you have on your resume are your first year GPA, some summer experience (I was a research assistant), and - if you could get on one - a journal. The holy grail of journals is the school's Law Review.

If you want a big firm gig, you work your butt off in your first year through two semesters, staying up day and night for a month each finals season. I was in school 6.5 days a week then, 8:30 to midnight S-F + Sat. night. With all first years on the same schedule, the end of finals whips open like a pressure cooker valve, streaming students to bars and beds. Then, without recovery time, there is a writing competition to get on a journal the next year. Again, day and night, for a week. Some people never finish; about half the class does - 150 people. Our law review accepted about 17 with the remaining 5-6 journals taking 10-20 each. The other half of the applicants shoot for moot court, client negotiations, clinics, etc. But you can be damn sure those won't merit mention if they are ever shot by the S&M queen's whack-job stalker.

[p.s. This is a really sad story. This is more a commentary on the legal communities obsession with journal membership. See e.g. Obama's leading the Harvard Law Review.]

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