If you are a 3L who is interested in working for the federal government after graduation, apply to the DOJ Honors Program! The deadline is next week, September 7—if you haven’t started on the application, start today. Go to http://www.justice.gov/oarm/arm/hp/hp.htm for information and links to the application procedures. You may also want to review the Career Brief article on federal government jobs: http://today.law.utah.edu/2010/07/post-graduate-honors-programs-with-the-federal-government/. DOJ offers amazing opportunities in a variety of areas—including immigration issues, civil rights, antitrust, and trade issues. Keep in mind you will rank your top three preferred “components” where you want to work—and the people who work in those components will know how you ranked them! Keep in mind you might want to show some kind of consistent interest in the three components you prefer, so that your interest in them appears strong and well thought-out.
Here are some tips from Julie Iverson, a DOJ attorney who visited campus today:
- Although these programs are competitive, you don’t have to be at the top of the class or from an Ivy League school (she wasn’t)—particularly for certain offices, since they make hiring decisions somewhat independently;
- In answering the questions (essays), avoid “TMI” –but try to make it memorable. Be genuine, be yourself, and show your enthusiasm for the components to which you are applying.
- The components with the most openings are: Executive Office of Immigration Review (56 spots); Civil Division (37); Environmental (12); Antitrust (11); Civil Rights (10); Criminal (10); Tax (6-8); Prisons (4).
- If hired, you will be subject to background and credit checks. It is not a dealbreaker just because you have some skeleton in your closet—just hope that it isn’t recent and DO NOT TELL EVEN A HALF-TRUTH about it. Sometimes problems arise from recent credit/financial issues, recent illegal drug abuse, and tax issues.