Top 5 Tips to Help Prepare for OCI’s
August is quickly approaching and for law students, that means on campus interviews, more commonly known as “OCI.” OCI is where fledgling, soon-to-be-lawyers take some of the very first steps down their career path and for 2L’s this is the internship needed to land a job after law school.
After long hours of filling out applications, preparing your resume and scheduling your interview you wonder what more can you do. Here are five tips for preparing for OCI, whether you’ve got two days until your first interview or two weeks.
1. Practice Interviewing
Start now preparing for your interview by doing mock interviews with friends, study groups, or at your law school’s career center. When practicing make sure you have answered all the general questions you predict will be asked (i.e., why you love the firm, why you went to law school, what your greatest challenges have been). Make sure to have enough to say that each answer could take a minute or two to tell, but start with what matters most, in case you get cut off after a few minutes.
2. Scout the Location
Most OCI events are held at or near your University. Making sure to scout out the room or building beforehand could help calm your nerves since you will be more comfortable with the location and atmosphere. Make sure you know how to get to the location as well as keep in mind where the restrooms are in case you need to freshen up beforehand. Being familiar is key to helping ease stress away and avoid complications.
3. Treat Every Firm Like It’s Your #1 Choice
You have sent your resume to many firms, ones you like and ones you know little about or can’t really see yourself at. Now comes the hard part, you have interviews coming up with some of those firms and you don’t know what to do. Even if they’re at the bottom of your list, treat them as though they’re your number one pick. Make sure to put in the effort to do the research and learn about them as well. You need to interview with enthusiasm because those firms might be great after all or might be the only ones to call you back.
4. Take Notes Using Paper
Though we are not in the age where people take paper notes as often anymore, when it comes to interviews this will make you stand out. Bring an interview folio with you that include copies of your resume, transcripts, writing samples, references, and any other application materials needed to impress your interviewees. Make sure all of this is printed on professional paper. Though you might not be asked for any of these materials, you’ll be prepared.
5. Clean up your social profiles
On campus interviews are screening interviews, which generally means firms don’t put the same effort into researching potential summer associates as they will once you’ve made it to the next round. This is good news for you since they may not have seen your embarrassing Facebook photos. But that does not mean they won’t. Start cleaning up your profiles to make them look more presentable and professional or update your privacy settings.
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