Recruiting Programs and Job Fairs

All JD and LLM students are encouraged to participate in USD Law’s Fall and Spring Recruiting programs. (First year students participate in spring recruiting only). Through these recruiting programs, students apply for posted opportunities and interview with public and private employers, both on- and off-campus. These formal recruiting programs are just one step in a comprehensive job search. We offer a variety of additional resources to students, including an internal job board, connection to national/regional job fairs and networking opportunities. Be sure to schedule an appointment with a career advisor each semester to discuss your job search strategy.

Fall Recruiting

All types of employers participate in Fall Recruiting, including private law firms, government agencies, public interest organizations, corporate counsel externship employers and other business organizations. There are two round of Fall Recruiting:

Round 1 Employers: Large law firms seeking summer associates for the following summer and organizations seeking fall legal externs for academic credit positions. Students apply for Round 1 positions in July and interviews occur throughout August.

Round 2 Employers: Public interest organizations, government agencies, accounting firms, smaller law firms and late registration Round 1 employers seeking spring and summer law clerks or externs. Students apply for Round 2 positions in July/August and interviews occur in late August/early September.

Spring Recruiting

Spring recruiting opportunities include the following: summer and fall externships (for academic credit) with government agencies, non-profit organizations and corporate counsel offices; summer/fall judicial externships (for academic credit); summer law clerk and post-graduate law clerk positions with small and mid-sized firms; and a limited number of post-graduate entry-level positions at firms and government agencies. The Spring Recruiting Program begins in January and goes through February.

For detailed information on fall and spring recruiting programs, students should review the Recruiting Guide and Recruiting Timeline in #HireUSDLaw’s Resource Library.

Job Fairs

UCLA’s Public Interest Career Day (PICD): As one of the largest careers fairs of its kind in the country, PICD happens annually at UCLA School of Law on a Saturday in early February. All southern California law schools co-sponsor the fair, and USD Law students are strongly encouraged to attend. In past years, more than 140 nonprofit organizations, government agencies and public interest firms have participated. PICD offers pre-scheduled formal interviews for summer and post-graduate positions, informal “table-talk” with representatives of various organizations and panel discussions on public interest career topics. For detailed information on PICD, students should review the Recruiting Guide in #HireUSDLaw’s Resource Library.

Equal Justice Works (EJW) Conference and Career Fair: EJW, a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a just society by mobilizing the next generation of lawyers committed to equal justice, holds an annual career fair in Washington D.C. every October. This event serves as the nation’s largest public interest career fair with over 180 nonprofit organizations, government agencies and public interest law firms participating. Students participate in pre-scheduled formal interviews for summer and post-graduate positions, informal “table-talk” with representatives of various organizations, workshops on launching public interest law careers, and informational sessions about student loans and debt. USD Law helps fund travel expenses for 2Ls and 3Ls who have demonstrated a commitment to public interest/public sector work. For more information, visit

The Loyola Patent Law Interview Program is a two-day interview program held in Chicago each summer that brings together patent law employers and law students from across the country to interview for summer associate positions and post-graduate employment.   Each year roughly 1,500 law students register for the program, submit their application materials, and apply for interviews with nation-wide employers.   USD Law helps fund travel expenses for students who secure interviews through this program. For more information, visit

Diversity and 1L Summer Fellowships

Law firms and bar associations offer summer opportunities for diverse students and students with specific backgrounds or areas of expertise (e.g., intellectual property). A noteworthy local opportunity is the San Diego County Bar Association’s Diversity Fellowship Program offering paid summer jobs for 1Ls at top San Diego firms and agencies. Diversity and summer fellowship opportunities are posted on #HireUSDLaw.