This summer promises to be a fun, exciting experience for me. I have an externship lined up with a federal magistrate judge which will begin shortly after the Spring semester ends. I plan on working in chambers full-time for about eight to ten weeks. I am very much looking forward to it, as it was my first choice for a summer activity. I briefly considered looking for a paid position in the private sector, but decided it would be best at this early stage of my education to extern with a judge. I realized that the only draw towards a private firm would be the ability to earn money, which is usually a very compelling reason to do something. In the long run, though, I knew it would be best to gain experience which could better prepare me to earn an income in a year or so.
Loyola’s staff did help me along the way to securing the position, and their assistance was integral. But that’s not to minimize the individual effort that one must do as a student to make things happen. The process of manually sending out application packets “blindly” to judges was very time-consuming and there was a very real fear that they would not even bother opening them. My career counselor, Jolene Horn, and Loyola’s externship coordinator, Rebecca Delfino, did give me very valuable advice that would help me appear attractive enough as an extern candidate to get my foot in the door. They helped me punch up my resume and cover letter, and gave me interview tips that helped me stand out as someone that a judge and their clerks would want to spend time with. In the end, I had an interview which lead directly to an offer.
Time will tell if there will be time for “fun” this summer. I will likely spend my off-hours playing with and taking care of my daughter. My wife and I are hoping to do a bit of travel as well. She works at TOMS shoes and I may accompany her on one the company’s “giving trips” where they hand out shoes in developing countries. One other activity I am planning on is to take “improv” acting/comedy classes. I plan on pursuing litigation, which means I need to increase my public speaking abilities. I have heard that these classes help dispel any fears of public speaking; and also I’m a huge comedy nerd so it should be just fun and entertaining as well.