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King Hall Career Services Responds to Challenging Economy

Posted By Mindy Bagish, Jun 15, 2009

It's no secret that the legal profession has not been immune to the problems that have beset the U.S. economy over the past year, and the current job market is a very challenging one for recent graduates.  In response, the UC Davis School of Law Office of Career Services is ratcheting up efforts to support student and alumni jobseekers, said Mindy Baggish, Director of Career Services.

"We're intensifying our research efforts to identify markets and disciplines that are not being as impacted by the downturn in the economy," said Baggish. "In addition, I plan to visit with a more diverse range of private-sector legal employers this summer, particularly practitioners at smaller- and medium-sized general-practice firms throughout California that typically do not adhere to formalized recruiting schedules and mechanisms."

In light of the compromised economy, Baggish is also increasing her outreach outside California, where more aggressive hiring may be taking place, and working to ensure that jobseekers are aware of the wide variety of resources offered by Career Services. King Hall students and alumni enjoy access to a battery of electronically accessible resources, as well as networking events organized by Career Services with local employers and bar associations. In addition, jobseekers have access to employment listings on a variety of databases, including Symplicity, the Intercollegiate Job Bank, and Point & Click-a streamlined compilation of legal job search websites created by Career Services that Baggish says "every King Hall student and alumnus should become familiar with."

The Office of Career Services also maintains a list of temporary employment agencies for use by alumni and recent graduates and processes requests for reciprocity in the use of other law schools' career services departments. A "SmartSite" has been created to make a library of career-related videos available throughout the school year, with topics including résumé preparation, the judicial clerkship application process, and how to conduct a targeted, direct-application job search. Perhaps most importantly, Career Services offers access to career counselors who are available for consultation and to help plan job searches.

Baggish encouraged jobseekers to make full use of what Career Services has to offer, to "think outside the box" about job possibilities, and to be prepared to expend more time on their job searches than they might have expected.

"Creativity will be the key to success during this challenging time. Waiting to see what opportunities may materialize is just not practical. We have the tools to help King Hallers meet with success. But taking personal ownership of one's job search, in conjunction with utilizing these tools, will make all the difference," said Baggish.