frequently asked questions
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
ABOUT FALL RECRUITING
June 1, 2012
Q. When and how will I find out if I have been selected by an employer for an interview?
In most cases, we ask that the employers send us their selections one week after the close of the session. Not all of the employers are able to make this deadline. You should check the session dates to see when sign-ups begin and end. If you are selected as an alternate, you will be notified by e-mail after the Pre-Select period has ended.
Q. I can't login to Symplicity and/or lost my password! What should I do?
Please check whether you are inputting your Username and Password in the correct case. If you are planning to participate in any of the off-campus programs, the National Recruitment Program and the Massachusetts Government/Public Interest Law Programs you will have a separate Username and Password to a separate Symplicity site. If you are still having trouble or have lost your password, click on the Forget Password tab to have it e-mailed to you. Career Services does not have access to your password.
Q: How do I upload my resume?
Please refer to the Student Reference Guide for help.
Q. How do I upload my transcript?
Please create an unofficial grade sheet and upload into your documents on Symplicity. You can find a template of an unofficial grade sheet in the "document library" on Symplicity. Please note that no scanned transcripts will be allowed on Symplicity. You must only use a word document.
Q. How do I obtain an official or unofficial transcript?
You should contact Student Services through Agora to request a transcript. I would recommend that you ask for 5 official transcripts. Open one transcript and make enough copies for first round interviews.
Q. How many employers should I bid for?
You should research the participating employers thoroughly, and you should only apply to those employers that you would seriously consider. If you don't exactly meet the qualifications an employer specifies, but are extremely interested in the firm or feel that you have experience that makes up for a missing qualification, you should apply to that employer. There is no formula that predicts whether a certain number of applications will yield a certain number of interviews or offers, so you should apply to those employers whose offer of employment you would seriously consider.
Q. Should I submit a cover letter with my application materials?
Yes, if an employer requests one, but otherwise, no. There may be some circumstances that warrant a letter, so please talk with a Career Counselor. If you are applying directly to an employer, outside of the OCI process, you should always include a letter.
Q. Should I upload a transcript and/or writing sample on Symplicity?
You should upload your unofficial grade sheet and writing sample on Symplicity. However, we will not be sending out writing samples to employers participating in the off campus programs and also for on campus programs in the fall. We have instructed employers to contact us or the students directly if they would like these materials before the interview.
Q. Will it be to my advantage to bid as soon as the bidding phase opens?
No, the system sorts resumes alphabetically. Just sign up and upload your resume by the bidding deadline.
Q. How are students chosen for interviews?
The Career Services Office sends all submitted resumes to the employers. The employers then review the materials and select the students. The students who have been selected for interviews will have a specific period of time to either sign up for an interview or decline the interview.
Q. How does the lottery work?
When you bid for employers in each On-Campus Session, your first top 5 choices will be automatically entered into the lottery with your number one selection weighing the heaviest.
Q. What should I do if the employer of my dreams has not selected me through the on-campus process?
Apply to that employer directly. Some employers encourage direct applications and hire through that process as well as the on-campus process.
Q: What are the "Job Postings"?
The Career Services Office receives information from many firms and agencies who would like to receive resumes from our students, but cannot interview on-campus. These firms and agencies can be found in the Job Postings/Resume Collection side of Symplicity.
Q. I am a third-year student who had a summer associate position with a firm from whom I expect to get an offer. Do I need to participate in OCI?
Yes, please register to participate in OCI and bid for those employers with which you would consider interviewing. Chances are you will not know whether you have received an offer by the time bidding starts. Once you receive an offer, please contact the Career Services Office immediately in order to withdraw from any interviews.
Q. What if I want to apply to an employer that is not on the OCI list?
Apply to that employer directly. If you are interested in applying to a large firm, government agency or corporate law department that is not on the fall interview list, research the employer and send a cover letter and resume to the person in charge of recruiting in August or September. If the recruiter is interested in interviewing you, he/she will contact you directly during the fall. There are many employers in other parts of the country who decide not to send recruiters to interview at the law school but who accept applications of Boston College Law School students. A list of these employers, the Direct Contact employers, can be viewed through the Job Postings on Symplicity. These employers should be contacted by the deadline provided, generally in late August and early September. Do not wait until on-campus interviews are completed to send letters to Direct Contact employers.
Q. What does it mean to be selected as an Alternate?
If you are selected as an Alternate by an employer, you may get an interview if there is a cancellation. We will send e-mails to alternates in the event of a cancellation. We strongly recommend that all students check their e-mails routinely.
Q. I have decided that I don't want to interview with the employer after all; what is the Career Services Office's Interview Cancellation Policy?
Once you are offered an interview, you will be given a deadline by which you must schedule the interview. If you do not meet that deadline, your interview will be reassigned to an alternate student. During the fall recruitment process, you may, however, decline an interview before you schedule a time slot. If you cannot accept an interview, you must immediately decline the interview through Symplicity. This will allow the Career Services Office to give this interview to another student.
Once you have scheduled an interview, you cannot cancel! Failure to honor a scheduled interview is considered by all parties to be a serious breach of courtesy and ethics. This action reflects poorly on you, both now and in the future, should you consider interviewing with the organization again in 10 months or 10 years. It also negatively impacts the BC Law community; no-shows and cancellations deprive other students of interviewing opportunities, waste employers' time and may impact employers' willingness to interview future BC law students.
Consequently, two no-shows or cancellations of interviews will result in your exclusion from further participation in the Law School Recruitment programs. An exception for cancellation of interviews may be made for third-year students who receive a permanent job offer after they have scheduled an interview.
Q. What do I need to know about accepting or declining a job offer?
If you have received a job offer, see the NALP Principles and Standards (http://www.nalp.org/fulltextofnalpprinciplesandstandards) and follow the guidelines as they apply to your situation. Many employers subscribe to these guidelines and will expect you to be knowledgeable of them.
Q. What is the best way to prepare for the Fall Recruitment Program and an independent job search?
- Stay in touch with the Career Services Office. We are open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and open until 3:00 p.m. on Fridays during the summer and can also be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Research participating employers thoroughly as early as possible and note important deadlines.
- Prepare an exceptional final draft of your resume.
- Request an official transcript from the Registrar and make several copies.
- Proofread your writing sample.
- If you need a cover letter, have a Career Services counselor review your draft.
- Participate in the Mock Interview Program so that you can practice your interview skills.
- Check your e-mail daily and make sure that your e-mail address is professional.
- Check your answering machine daily as well, and make sure that your message is professional.
- If your name has changed, notify the Career Services Office so that we know how to get in touch with you.
- Make sure you have appropriate interviewing attire.
- If you feel that you are having "bad luck" with the process, visit us in Career Services sooner rather than later.
- Most importantly, stay enthusiastic!