If you’re preparing for on-campus interviews, there’s a good chance that you are getting ready to ask your interviewer what a typical day looks like at their firm. I’m going to give you a rundown of how a recent day unfolded for me, so you can get a sense of why WilmerHale DC is great place to spend your summer. And this way, like any good lawyer-in-training, you’ll know the answer to your day-in-the-life question before you ask it. Here we go:
8:30 AM – Leave my apartment, admiring my WilmerHale Litigation Department Bowling Competition trophy on the way out. It’s important to celebrate small victories (or, in this case, a big one).
9:30 AM – Have a call with a senior associate about a new assignment. I have been eager to get involved with WilmerHale’s higher education work since the start of the summer, and this week I had the chance to jump on a fascinating case. In the DC office, work assignment coordinators help ensure that summer associates get a steady but manageable supply of projects. We can also reach out directly to the attorneys that we meet at lunches, snack breaks, or firmwide events. I came across this assignment after an attorney who knew that I was interested in higher education work contacted me about the opportunity.
10:45 AM – Speak with the associate for whom I drafted a section of a pro bono brief about some follow-up research. I have been so pleasantly surprised by the number of opportunities that I have had to contribute to pro bono matters as a summer associate. So many of the attorneys I’ve worked with here have spoken about how meaningful the firm’s commitment to pro bono has been for them. Summer associates have had the chance to participate in a wide range of these matters, from helping out with Supreme Court amicus briefs to staffing an immigration clinic in partnership with a local nonprofit.
12:00 PM – In a break from our regularly scheduled programming of indulgent sit-down lunches, I grab a sandwich with one of the associates on my floor. We talk about what the first few months at a law firm are like and the experience of adjusting from the role of summer associate to full-fledged attorney.
2:00 PM – As part of WilmerHale’s Summer Education Series, I defend a mock deposition. I use the tips we learned from experienced WilmerHale litigators to prep my client before he is grilled by a couple of my fellow summer associates. One of the firm’s partners observes the whole exercise and offers us detailed feedback. While my deposition didn’t go quite as well as the bowling competition did, it’s an incredible opportunity to start developing an essential litigation skill.
6:00 PM – After submitting my follow-up research and entering my time for the day (and the previous day—oops), I head over to WilmerHale DC’s summer partner reception. This gathering gives me the chance to not only hear about the fascinating matters that these partners are leading, but to learn more about their lives and their paths to WilmerHale. At my table alone, one partner came to WilmerHale after an early career at the White House, while another made his way to DC by way of a clerkship in Alaska. Some have built their entire careers at WilmerHale, while many others have joined or re-joined the firm after stints in government service.
8:30 PM – Grab gelato (because I missed the dessert table at the reception) and walk home (because night has fallen and the temperature in DC has, at long last, dropped into the 80s). Get ready for another exciting day at the firm, which will begin with breakfast at the legendary Hay-Adams.