6 Paid Internships to Apply for Outside of OCI

This is the time of year when rising 2Ls get excited about OCI. The siren call of the good money, prestige factor, and ease of the job application process make OCI pretty darn appealing. OCI is great and if you are interested in firm work, it should definitely be a part of your job search strategy. But limiting your 2L summer job search exclusively to OCI is a mistake. Fortunately, there is a whole world of non-OCI paid 2L summer jobs out there.

Be sure to look into these opportunities now. Do not wait until after OCI is over. Many of the best summer internship opportunities outside of OCI have early application deadlines that occur well before you will know whether you will be getting an offer from one of the OCI firms. If you throw your hat in the ring now, if OCI does not go as well as you had hoped, you will have several options instead of having to start your job search from scratch.

Getting a job through OCI is not a guarantee. I have spoken to many colleagues in career development offices throughout the country and every year, they hear of at least one student with a really high GPA who gets zero offers through the OCI process and a student with a relatively low GPA who gets multiple offers through the OCI process.

The best way to maximize your chances of landing a 2L summer job that you’re excited about it is to assume, no matter how high or low your GPA is, that you will not get an offer through OCI and to apply to multiple non-OCI opportunities before OCI season even starts.

With that in mind, here are six excellent paid 2L summer internships that do not interview during OCI:

1. Department of Justice Summer Law Internship (SLIP) Program (DC and across the country)

Deadline: The DOJ SLIP application opens on July 31 and closes on Tuesday, September 4. Apply on July 31, the first day it opens, so you can go into OCI confidently knowing that your DOJ application is in. 

Pay: Interns working for the DOJ in DC get paid $16.49/hr and interns working for the DOJ outside of DC get paid $13.28/hr.

Why work for the DOJ 2L Summer? You will get great government experience and will be a more competitive applicant for the DOJ Honors Program, the program the DOJ uses to hire all entry-level attorneys.

As the nation’s largest legal employer, Justice offers opportunities for law students in virtually every legal practice area. Explore the work of various DOJ organizations and find those that best match your interests and expertise.

How do you apply? Apply on the DOJ website and check the DOJ’s application checklist early to get a sense for what the application involves.  Hint: it involves several essays so you will want to get started early.

2. The Chicago Transit Authority Summer Internship Program (Chicago)

Deadline: The CTA starts reviewing applications in August so get an early start and apply in July before you get busy with OCI interviews. 

Pay: The CTA hires 2L summer interns at $16 an hour

Why work for the CTA 2L summer? The CTA internship program gives interns incredible practical experience, including permitting them to take depositions, second-chair trials, and rotate through the CTA’s four practice divisions: torts, corporate, compliance, and employment litigation.

Not only is the work interesting and varied; the CTA’s internship program is as formal as a law firm’s program. Interns are all assigned mentors and given official performance evaluations. On top of that, the CTA is located in the West Loop and the Law Department has its own floor.

How do you apply? To apply for the Legal Intern Program, please submit a current resume and an official law school transcript to:

Latoya Davis
Law Department, 6th Floor
Chicago Transit Authority
567 W. Lake St.
Chicago, IL 60661

E-mail: ldavis3@transitchicago.com

You can read more about the CTA’s summer internship and my employer outreach visit with them here.

3. Army Summer Internship (Across the country and world)

Deadline: November 1st. The Army will be on-campus in September to interview applicants so be sure to check your email about the announcement for that opportunity. Bear in mind that all applicants must complete their interviews before November 1st so plan to submit your application well ahead of that deadline.

Pay: About $7000 for a 60 day internship.

Why work for the Army 2L summer? Army summer interns are incredibly competitive candidates for entry-level JAG positions, with about 90% of summer interns getting selected. Even if you aren’t interested in pursuing a JAG career, you will get great public service and hands-on experience. Each summer, the Army JAG Corps hires 2L law students to work as legal interns in hundreds of offices across the United States. Interns also have the opportunity to complete their internships abroad in Germany, South Korea and Japan among several other countries

How do you apply? Apply online here and schedule your on-campus interview in September.

4. Air Force Summer Internship (Across the country and world)

Deadline: Last year it was March. Keep your eye out on the weekly docket and the Air Force JAG recruiting page for the 2018/2019 deadline.

Pay: About $5000-$7000 over a 10-12 week internship.

Why work for the Air Force 2L summer? As with the Army, if you complete a summer internship, you have a much better chance of getting selected for an Air Force JAG position. And if you aren’t interested in pursuing a JAG career, the internship will make you qualified for government positions, including prosecutor and public defender positions because you will get hands-on experience from day one.

How do you apply? Apply on www.USAJobs.gov. The position will be titled “Air Force Law Clerk. There are no interviews for Air Force summer positions. You just send your materials in and then hear back.

5. Public Interest Law Initiative Internship (Chicago)

Deadline: October 15. The application is open from August 1-October 15 and offers are given out on a rolling basis so if you want to maximize your chances of success, apply as early as possible.

Pay: $5500 for the internship.

Why work in a PILI Internship 2L summer? PILI’s Law Student Internship Program connects law students from across the country with legal service agencies in Illinois. Interns get hands on experience, often working directly with clients, at the best non-profits in Illinois and Chicago such as LAF, Cabrini Green Legal Aid, Center for Disability and Elder Law, and many more. Check out all of the agency placement options here. PILI also hosts a series of summer luncheons and creates many networking opportunities for summer interns.

How do you apply? Apply on the PILI website.

6. Chubb Insurance Summer Claims Internship (Philadelphia and Chicago)

Deadline: Spring. If you’re interested in applying, make it a habit of regularly checking Chubb’s website. I will also post the opportunity to the Weekly Docket once it is up.

Pay: $15-$17/hr

Why work for Chubb Insurance 2L summer? Chubb is the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurer. With operations in 54 countries, Chubb provides commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, personal accident and supplemental health insurance, reinsurance and life insurance to a diverse group of clients. The Chubb Internship program offers a chance to experience the working environment of a broadly diversified global insurance and reinsurance provider that has a culture of excellence and remarkable growth potential. Chubb frequently hires claims interns as claims associates after graduation and it is a great place to get insurance experience and open yourself up to an emerging legal career option. Chubb’s internship is part of an official program so you will get access to great mentoring and networking.

How do you apply? Apply on Chubb’s website. Search for “claims intern.”

If you want to learn more about these great opportunities, get help preparing your application materials, or talk more about your non-OCI career search, reach out to a CDO counselor. We are open all summer and want to hear from you.


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