Working In-House Over the Summer: A Hack For Finding Who Is Hiring

Many law students are interested in working for companies over the summer or through externships. Working in an in-house position is great experience that can give you the chance to do transactional work outside of a law firm. Unlike judges, public interest organizations, and government agencies, not all or even the majority of companies believe in hiring law students. Fortunately, many companies interview, post job postings, and regularly hire at Notre Dame. But companies often do not have the resources to reach out to multiple law schools. Thus, there are many great corporate opportunities that you might only discover with some digging.

Some companies love having law student interns and take on as many as they can while some are not open to hiring law student interns at all, often because they do not have time to mentor them.

So how can you tell which is which? Which companies are willing to take on law student interns or externs?

I am going to let you in on a nice hack I have discovered. If a company is willing to take on law student externs during the school year, that means they see the value in hiring law students and so they are almost always willing to take on law student interns during the summer.

So start looking to see which companies hire externs in particular markets.

You can start with Chicago and the placement sites document for the Notre Dame Law in Chicago program. The placement sites document contains a list of all of the approved sites for the Chicago program at Notre Dame. So if a company is on that list, it means the company is willing and often eager to host law student externs through our Chicago program. For instance, the Gas Technology Institute, Levy Restaurants, and Merieux Nutrisciences Corporation all appear in our placement sites list, they are all open to hosting Chicago program externs, and they are all open to hosting law student interns over the summer too.

So if you’re interested in working for a company in Chicago next summer, our placement sites document is a great place to start. Better yet, the document even gives instructions for how to apply to each individual organization listed.

But don’t just limit to yourself to Chicago!

Look to see where law schools in other cities send externs during the school year. Because Notre Dame is located in Indiana, NDLS students cannot extern during the school-year in cities such as Los Angeles, New York, and Miami but many of you wish to work there over the summer. Fortunately, law schools in those cities are able to send companies in those cities student externs during the school-year so those law schools have detailed information on which companies hire law students in their cities. If a company hires externs from one law school, the odds are that they are open to applications from any law school.

So let’s look at some other law schools’ externship opportunities.

For instance, one Los Angeles area law school has a list of companies focusing on entertainment law where externs have worked in the past. If a company is on that list, it means they believe in hiring law students so you can apply for a summer position there.

Entertainment Law Companies in Los Angeles that Hire Law Students:

  • BET Network
  • Catch Media
  • CBS, Inc.
  • Columbia Tristar Home Video
  • Comedy Central
  • Directors Guild of America, Inc.
  • DocStoc
  • Dreamworks
  • EMI North America/Capitol Records
  • EMI Recorded Music
  • Fox Broadcasting Company
  • Fox Channels Group
  • Fox Family Worldwide
  • Fox Television Stations
  • Fox, Inc.
  • Harvey Entertainment
  • Hearst Entertainment
  • Inferno Entertainment
  • Lifetime Television
  • Lionsgate Music and Publishing
  • Miramax Films
  • Motion Picture Association of America
  • MTV Networks
  • NBC/Universal
  • Newline Cinema
  • Nickelodeon
  • Paramount Pictures
  • Radar Pictures, Inc.
  • Rhino Entertainment
  • Screen Actors Guild
  • Sony Pictures
  • Warner Borthers (Corporate)
  • Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
  • Whatshotnow.com, Inc.
  • Writers and Artists Agency
  • Writers Guild of America, West, Inc.
  • Yari Film Group

I found other Los Angeles area law schools that have had externs work at the New York Stock Exchange, AARP, Anthem, Inc, California Association of Realtors, and Forever 21, Inc.

Searching through New York law schools, I found the following list.

Companies in New York that hire law students:

  • ABC
  • Atlantic Records
  • ASPCA
  • Bear Stearns
  • Burberry Limited
  • CBS
  • Chanel, Inc.
  • Classic Media
  • DC Comics
  • Duane Reade
  • EMI
  • Estee Lauder
  • Gucci America, Inc.
  • Guidance Software
  • Island Def Jam
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Kate Spade
  • Morgan Stanley
  • MTV/VH1
  • NBC
  • Novo Nordisk
  • Prism Business Media, Inc.
  • Red Dog Entertainment
  • Sanctuary Records
  • Seven For All Mankind
  • SONY Music
  • Stuart Weitzman
  • Viacom
  • Westwood One, Inc.

If you’re hoping to work for a company in Dallas, check out SMU Dedman School of Law’s Corporate Counsel externship website. SMU students regularly complete school-year externships with 7 Eleven, Fossil, Geico, the Dallas Stars, and many additional companies.

Wherever you hope to end up this summer, there is very likely to be a company there that hires law students. If you want help identifying corporations that hire law students in a particular city, reach out to the CDO. We’re here to help.

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