Hi my name is Jeff Janoff ’82. I have been a trial lawyer in Santa Clara County for 31 years after graduating from Santa Clara.
My advice: pick the area of law that floats your boat. It is an old adage “do what you like and the money will follow.” It is as true in the field of law as in any other. If you pick a job for the money but you hate what you do then your product will suffer and your clients will notice it as well. Some might say “it’s only for a short time to get experience.” That is ok to an extent, but the problem is lack of inertia. Once you have a well-paying job you will not want to leave it because you get used to the money. Also I understand that jobs are hard to come by and you might have to take what you can get. But if you sacrifice too much you are not honoring yourself or your profession. You want to be jazzed about each and every day when you get up for work. Spend some time thinking about what you want from your law degree-is it money? prestige? helping people? Do I want a big firm or small? do I want to work on my own? or do I want to work for a non-profit or corporation? Such an exercise will help you narrow your search for a job.
In my case- I have been representing victims of negligent acts and that is all I do. I feel strongly that I am helping people that otherwise would be swallowed up by the system. Find your passion and pursue it. The law can be a very strong and useful tool if handled with care and patience. If you need help finding your “legal path” feel free to call me or visit me at www.janofflaw.com