Internship Haze

Yesterday was the first day of spring, and I could not be more pleased. I was particularly ready for February’s demise. Many of us spent the month up to our ears in summer internship applications and interviews. Barely had our first semester grades come off the press when the first wave of OCIs (On Campus Interviews) struck. You could always tell who was interviewing – I assure you power suits are not the attire of choice for the average 1L.

Freezing weather, unreliable transit, and treacherous ice slicks further pummeled our spirits. Indeed, those who braved blustery winds in thin suits earned my greatest admiration. I was one of the lucky ones: I did not participate in OCI, as the positions I applied for were based in Washington State, with one exception. Still, the process of applying for several jobs on top of the usual demands of school was draining.

Bundled Up

February Fashions

If any law school hopefuls are reading this, my advice is that it’s never too early to start thinking about where you want to spend your 1L summer. That being said, BU Law’s Career Development Office (CDO) is a fabulous resource. The staff is warm, accessible, and incredibly attuned to individual students’ interests and needs. For example, knowing that I studied in Hungary, the CDO sent me a personalized email flagging a summer position in Budapest.

As a relentless planner, I knew long before setting foot in the Redstone building where I wanted to apply. I was nearly certain I would be spending this summer in Washington State, but a fateful CDO email advertising an international internship changed everything.

I studied international human rights law in graduate school, so when I spotted a position with the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly, I couldn’t resist applying. You see, I had always dreamed of working at the European Court of Human Rights, the CoE’s judicial body, but the CoE has a longstanding policy of employing only nationals of CoE member states. Naturally, I figured that my American citizenship precluded me from ever working there. To my great fortune—and to BU Law’s impressive credit—the Parliamentary Assembly’s Committee on Political Affairs and Democracy has bilateral agreements with BU Law and Harvard Law in which they may accept a few students from both institutions each summer. The Committee last hosted a BU Law student in 2014; this year they’ll host two Harvard students and me.

February was a slog, but the toil paid off. Many of my classmates landed their top choices with U.S. Attorneys offices, state and federal judicial internships, and coveted firm positions. Personally, this experience reinforced how grateful I am to be a student here. Thanks to our Career Development Office, I will be spending my summer promoting democracy, human rights, and the rule of law at the Palace of Europe in Strasbourg, France.

Update: Today’s view from the McCausland Commons. It’s still snowing.

Snow from Commons

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