Always keen to work with bright young legal minds who are passionate about law and justice.
BUT you’ll have to meet me half-way and give me a reason to want to know you. A reason to work and engage with you, and a reason to share the little that I know about law, and – in turn, learn from you.
Template/Format based applications, therefore, are a strict NO. They don’t help me know you at all. Also, I am not a “Sir/Madam”. Never have been, and don’t intend to be. Please don’t do this. I’m not going to read another line of your application if that’s how you start. The essence of legal practice is the ability to step out of your own skin and walk the town in someone else’s. Think like me, or whoever is reading you email. Why should I continue to read your email when you haven’t put in the effort of communicating well with me. Good writing reflects good and clear thinking. Think well. Write well. Your application should reflect how you think and who you are. Don’t be generic. Talk about your dreams and ideas, not the dreams and ideas of the one whose internship application you blindly aped.
Therefore, please avoid cookie-cutter applications which lack individuality, and are boring to read.
Be creative. Show us the value that you can add to the team – in terms of law, and life. We are happy to share the little that we know with you, but you’d have to show us that it’s worth the effort and you’d be amenable to learning, and have the basics in place.
Instead of using adjectives such as I am “hardworking” or a “team player”, demonstrate in your application a challenging situation that you dealt with and came out winning from. As someone wise said : Show, don’t tell! Story telling is one of the most important parts of being a lawyer and the sooner you learn it – the better it is. I don’t care what law school you are from. But it’s important to me that you’re passionate about the subject.
Good writing is fun to read. Talk to me (in your application) – for instance, about the evolution of an interesting legal concept, a case law that you read and don’t agree with, or a tough legal proposition that you worked on, or an article that you once wrote. Write to me, for instance, about the challenges of the criminal justice system and how we can make it better. Talk to me about how litigation would look like 20 years from now. Ideas, concepts, dreams. Show me that you have led, or are – at-least, willing to lead an examined life.
Write, for instance, a story, or a poem, or – even crazier – a letter that your future self would write back to your present self, talking about your journey in the profession. Anything! Just keep it interesting and ensure that it brings out who you really are!
I really hope you’d give me a reason to work with you.
On my side of the bargain, I’d try not disappointing either….
Look forward to working with you!