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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Law School Hiring Thread, 2009-10, Thread Two

This thread will be moved to the front every ten days or so.

Please add comments to this thread, not Thread One (where comments are now closed).

This thread is for both law professors and people who are on the market this coming year for becoming a law professor. We invite those on the market and those who are prawfs to leave comments (anonymously if they prefer) regarding a range of things:

a) whether they have received a call from a particular school inviting them to an interview at the AALS meat market, and/or whether they accepted it; also whether the school has asked for a candidate's scholarship yet

b) whether they have received a callback from a law school and/or accepted it

c) whether they have received an offer from a law school and/or accepted it; feel free to also leave details about the offer or info about teaching loads, research leaves, etc.

Law professors may also choose to provide information that is relevant to the entry-level or the lateral market.

Bear in mind: if you don't want your contact information displayed, please just enter in [email protected] or something like that as an email address.

This post will be moved to the front of the blog once every ten days or so, and we will also try to provide updates in the comments that consolidate the various bits of information here.

The aggregation will now take place slightly differently. All information should still come in through the comments. However, a very kind market participant has agreed to aggregate this information, and this aggregation will appear a spreadsheet that is embedded in this post (and will be embedded in future hiring posts). Only the participant will be able to edit the spreadsheet, but when the participant edits the spreadsheet, those changes will be reflected in the embedded version below.

Please note: the aggregator will try to update this spreadsheet once a day, but the aggregator may or may not (to preserve anonymity) have a job, and perhaps may even be on the market; thus there may be some delay in information's traveling between the comments and the spreadsheet.

Additionally, this is a new system, so please bear with any technical problems we may have.

The first thread, where comments are now closed, is here.

Update: Comments are now closed on this thread. Please add comments to Thread Three.

Posted by Administrators on October 28, 2009 at 10:54 PM | Permalink


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Comments on this thread are now closed. Please post comments on Thread Three, available here: http://prawfsblawg.blogs.com/prawfsblawg/2009/11/law-school-hiring-thread-200910-thread-three-the-next-phase.html

Posted by: Admin | Nov 6, 2009 9:30:43 AM

What about rooms that have a 3 as the second number? Where are those? Thanks!

Posted by: Josh | Nov 5, 2009 11:10:14 AM

David Frakt, you win the award for most informative posts this season. Thanks so much, especially from those of us who are novices. Good luck with your interviews.

Posted by: anon | Nov 4, 2009 6:34:15 PM

Thanks, anonanon. Actually, I'm still serving in the Reserves and just completed a 14 month active duty tour defending detainees facing trial by military commission at Guantanamo, successfully gaining the release of my juvenile client, Mohammed Jawad, in August.

Good luck to you as well. Introduce yourself if you see me.

Posted by: David Frakt | Nov 4, 2009 4:28:46 PM

Professor Frakt, I noticed from your bio that you were a JAG officer for 9+ years. I'd like to thank you for your service. I wish you well this weekend.

Posted by: anonanontillthebreakofdawn | Nov 4, 2009 2:02:33 AM

When you check in at the registration desk, you'll be given a folder which lists all the schools and their interview rooms. There is also a guide to what the room numbers mean. Rooms in the center tower have a 0 as the second number. Rooms with a 1 as the second number are in another wing of the hotel which takes a good 3-5 minutes to get to. Occasionally a few schools also interview at the Omni which is one block away, so make sure you give yourself enough time to get there if you have an interview there. The Marriott Wardman Park is a very confusing hotel. I strongly recommend scouting out the locations of your interviews. Also, the elevators get very busy and are quite slow at each interview turnover time, so if you have a back to back, make sure you let the committee know at the outset so they let you go on time.

Jake, I'll be in the lobby/lounge area at 11:30 on Friday and Saturday if you want a Scrabble game. (I don't like to be the last candidate standing in the way of lunch, so I didn't schedule any 11:30 interviews.) I also have a break from 2:30 to 4 Saturday. I'd also be happy to go out to lunch with you or any other candidates either day and we can share interview horror stories.

You can spot me by my name tag (everybody gets one and make sure you wear yours), but if you want to know what I look like, there is a picture at

Regarding the flu. There is tons of handshaking at these interviews. Usually, the moment you walk in everyone on the committee shakes your hands, so if you want to skip this ritual, you should act quickly. I think I would say something like. "Hello, everyone, I'm very pleased to meet you, but I'm feeling a bit under the weather. I don't think I'm contagious, but as a precautionary measure, I'm trying to keep my distance from everyone." I don't think anyone will think ill of you (pun intended) if you take this approach.

Posted by: David Frakt | Nov 3, 2009 11:21:56 PM

No need to panic or scramble to contact schools - the AALS provides a list of room numbers and usually also the reps from a given school (though of course some schools have more than one team, so there can be some confusion).

Posted by: anon | Nov 3, 2009 9:44:47 PM

I think it is fairly easy, indeed, responsible, for a possibly infected candidate to decline to shake hands with committees and to avoid close contact with them. That being said, a good sanitizing before and after interviews should suffice to protect the parties involved without canceling your entire trip. Provided you are upfront with committee members about the possibility you have the flu, they should not think your standoffishness relates to their school. A lot of schools have had H1N1 go around (and I know faculty members who have suffered from it at a few schools) so they should be very understanding. Understanding but leery, so if you know you are contagious, go with a mask and gloves. The rest of us should be careful and wash our hands lots. Please, no biological warfare!

If you are not feeling up to two grueling days of interviews, then I am equally sure that schools will be understanding if you cancelled. If you do cancel, I would do so with an offer to do a videoconference with them - they would not spend any money on interviewing you and you could get your 30 minutes in without infecting them. There are some things lost in a video rather than face to face, but you will be better positioned for the schools that accept your offer as compared to simply canceling outright. It's also fairly easy to do with Skype even if you don't have work facilities.

Posted by: Anon | Nov 3, 2009 5:39:51 PM

Wow, I was thinking about this. I kinda don't want to shake the hands of committee members because catching the flu from the candidate before me will knock me out if I get a call back, but that person will have recovered by then.

AALS FAR Conference and biological warfare...talk about a tough recruitment process. Up next, mortars and landmines.

But seriously, it would be GREAT if committees welcomed candidates and said "We're not shaking hands because of the flu." I think everyone would understand.

Posted by: Bird Flu | Nov 3, 2009 3:32:36 PM

Serious and strange question - I have suspected H1n1...feel awful right now, hoping to feel better by Friday. Would you go in my condition? Would you call schools and explain?

Posted by: anon | Nov 3, 2009 2:27:15 PM

David, you've got yourself a Scrabble match if I can find you.

Posted by: Jake Linford | Nov 3, 2009 1:31:28 PM

Is anyone else finding that some schools haven't provided their room #?

Maybe 10% of my schools haven't provided it and I needed to e-mail them to ask for it. Is a directory of room numbers provided at check-in, or if we don't have it by now should we be scrambling to contact our committees?

Posted by: INeedAMap | Nov 3, 2009 1:17:16 PM

Got one more interview last week at U Montana - 1/2 prosecution clinic, 1/2 teaching, tenure-track.

Hope to see you all at the FRC. Come by and say hello.

If I bring my travel Scrabble, will anyone play with me in the lobby between interviews?

Posted by: David Frakt | Nov 3, 2009 12:52:05 PM

Quinnipiac is interviewing for a health law position at AALS - called a couple of weeks ago.

Posted by: anony-mouse | Nov 1, 2009 11:22:23 PM

Duquesne and St Mary's interviews, neither specified the area for which they're hiring. My interests are business associations and legal writing.

Posted by: Candidate | Nov 1, 2009 10:57:15 PM

Arkansas-Fayetteville has called.

Posted by: anon | Oct 30, 2009 1:56:38 PM

BYU did send out emails and is interviewing at AALS. IP / commercial.

Posted by: I will reveal myself anon | Oct 29, 2009 12:51:05 AM

I also got a call from Quinnipiac. That was last week. They said they had gotten funding for a position in their civil litigation clinic and were doing phone screening interviews rather than goign to AALS.

Posted by: anon | Oct 21, 2009 1:32:07 AM

1) I applied to Arkansas-Fayetteville directly, and they told me they would be doing interviews through AALS FRC. I have not been, however, contacted for an interview by them.

2) I applied to Chicago-Kent directly, and they indicated that they are not hiring this year.

3) I have been contacted by Texas Tech (to which I did not apply directly) to schedule an interview at FRC. My interest area is commercial law.

Posted by: Midwest or Bust | Oct 20, 2009 7:32:38 PM

Fyi, Idaho and Samford have called. Hawaii told me that they weren't hiring this year.

Posted by: anon | Oct 20, 2009 6:48:42 PM

Harvard has called

Posted by: dittohead | Oct 20, 2009 5:58:02 PM

For what it's worth, Marquette said they were only hiring for a legal writing position and Vermont not hiring a professor this year (they are looking to fill some administrative positions).

Posted by: anon | Oct 20, 2009 5:49:58 PM

I've heard of Quinnipiac already doing phone interviews for clinical, not sure if that helps at all.

Posted by: anon | Oct 20, 2009 5:28:33 PM

By my count, here are the AALS Member Schools that haven't contacted anyone:
Alabama, Arkansas Fayetteville*, Arkansas Little-Rock, BYU*, UC Berkeley*, Catholic, Chicago Kent, Creighton, Dayton, Hamline, Harvard, Hawaii, Howard, Idaho, Marquette, Pacific McGeorge, Mississippi, UMKC, Montana, New Mexico, Northwestern, Nova, Puerto Rico, Quinnipiac, Samford, USF, South Carolina, South Dakota, Suffolk, Texas Tech*, Vermont, William Mitchell

The four schools with asterisks advertised in the August AALS Bulletin that they were hiring.

Does anyone have any intel on whether any of these schools are actually hiring this year? Has anyone received an interview from one of these schools and failed to inform the Blawg?

1. Chapman is not currently on the spreadsheet but I got an interview with them about three weeks ago for a clinical position in their Veteran's legal clinic. Don't know if they are hiring for doctrinal teaching positions.

2. I heard from Montana that they will be doing preliminary phone interviews
for an open position there (advertised on higheredjobs.com and in Chronicle of Higher Ed, not AALS Bulletin) so perhaps they aren't going to AALS.

Posted by: David Frakt | Oct 20, 2009 5:12:20 PM

A Third Tier school that was mentioned a month ago. Had one other slot left.

Posted by: I eat sandwiches | Oct 20, 2009 2:46:26 PM

Interview with University of Washington. Crim/crim pro. Got the call Friday morning. They explained that they got a late start since they are on the quarter system and school starts later in the fall.

Posted by: David Frakt | Oct 18, 2009 2:38:08 AM

AALS Interview invitation with the North Carolina Central University School of Law.

Posted by: anon | Oct 16, 2009 1:19:26 AM

This is a tough market--do as many screening interviews as you can stuff into two days and take as many call-backs as you can. 25 interviews is doable--you will have back-to-backs, but wear comfortable shoes and get used to running up and down stairs. If you avoid the elevators during the hiring conference, you can make it to your interviews on time. (I was late to only one of 25 interviews, and it was because I had the wrong room number written down). Only if you exceed 25 should you begin to cancel to free up spots for better schools.

My approach was to tell interviewer #1 as soon as I arrived, that I am very sorry, but will need to end a few minutes early to get to another interview. Interviewers understood, as they were on a tight schedule too. Wear a watch so you can make your apologies if its time to head to the other hotel tower.

Alternatively, some people advise to not be as direct, but instead make a judgment call based on which school you like better if one interview starts to run late. Pick the approach you are the most comfortable with.

Posted by: a first-year prof | Oct 14, 2009 11:27:10 PM

I wouldn't even *begin* to think about cutting interviews until you have more than 25. And probably not even then, in this market.

This is not a close call. Do them all.

That said, I also think you shouldn't accept (or should quickly and gracefully cancel) interviews at any place that's so unappealing that you wouldn't accept an offer under any circumstances.

- junior prof who was very happy with their AALS outcome

Posted by: anonymous | Oct 14, 2009 9:41:06 PM

At least one top 15 school told me that they'd make all their decisions by the middle of October. I'm sure other schools think similarly.

Posted by: anonduder | Oct 14, 2009 2:03:20 PM

I received two calls for interviews yesterday -- one Tier 1, the other Tier 3. Also unclear whether they were filling out a schedule or if someone cancelled. The slot for the Tier 1 was at a decent time, the Tier 3 was the dreaded 8am slot. I took both because I am not to 21 interviews yet...

Posted by: Anon | Oct 14, 2009 1:04:41 PM

I got an interview yesterday (Tuesday) with a school that started calling in early September. They had very limited slots open, and are a lower ranked school, so I expect cancellations.

Posted by: anon | Oct 14, 2009 1:03:49 PM

I got an interview call on Thursday. Not clear if they were filling out a schedule or if someone cancelled and left a spot open.

Posted by: anon | Oct 14, 2009 10:46:21 AM

Anyone still getting interviews? Is it time to assume calls are finished?

Posted by: anon | Oct 14, 2009 10:39:59 AM

I think you should drop the ones where, no matter what, you wouldn't take an offer even if they were the only offer you got. No point complicating your schedule and wearing yourself out if you have ruled out that school.

Even then, two caveats: 1) keep in mind that an interview might just change your mind about the school, and 2) if that interview was at 8 a.m. on Friday, I might keep it just as a warm up.

Posted by: anon knowitall | Oct 14, 2009 9:56:27 AM

Yes, definitely a lot of misinformation over the past few days. Keep all of your interviews. 21 is a lot, but not too many by any means. You will be tired, but tired is better than ruling yourself out before the conference.

Posted by: Jessica Erickson | Oct 14, 2009 9:52:00 AM

Has anyone heard from the University of Washington?

Posted by: anon | Oct 13, 2009 9:45:02 PM

I haven't weighed in here a lot but I want to concur with David Frakt, above, re: the # of interviews. There's a lot of strategic disinformation in the comments preceding that suggested going down to 5-10 interviews!
You can easily do 20-25 interviews at the meat market; doing more than 28 or so can be exhausting and the returns might be smaller, but even that is doable. This is a year where lots of schools are hiring very few people; happily FSU is not one of them. That said, because of the economy, you are on average likelier to find it tougher to score an offer this year than
in previous years. Hope that helps.

Posted by: Dan Markel | Oct 13, 2009 9:57:34 AM

To the person with 21 interviews. You would be crazy to drop to 5-10. Remember each school is interviewing up to 15 people for each position. A good rule of thumb is that you will get one callback for every 3 interviews. Often schools will call back 3 finalist for one position. So to get one offer, you may need 9 interviews. I had 5 interviews the first time, got one callback and got the job. The second time I went through, I had six interviews, one call back, no offer. The third time I went through, I had 8 interviews, two callbacks, no offers. You may think this is a reflection of my poor interviewing skills, but I really don't think so. There is just tremendous competition out there. If you have 21 interviews, you obviously have impressive credentials, so you may get more callbacks than most, but I would keep 15 or so. Remember that people on this website have a vested interest in you dropping as many interviews as possible. Keep all the interviews at schools where you think you might reasonably be willing to accept a position.

I'm up to 13 interviews, and I plan to keep every one of them.

As for rookie mistakes, (I've been on the hiring committee a couple of times as well) you absolutely must have a plan on what your next article will be, and it preferably should be in progress. If you have published something, go back and re-read it. It is entirely possible, indeed likely, that someone on the committee will ask you some probing questions about your scholarship.

I have seen a lot of advice on this website about not seeming too eager, but I would also urge you not to look like you aren't interested in a particular school. Take the time to read about the school and the members of the committee. While it is not necessary to read their scholarship, if you can find an opportunity to indicate that you are familiar with their area of specialization, that will likely impress the committee members.

Be prepared to answer the question, Is there anything in particular that you find interesting/attractive about our school?

Posted by: David Frakt | Oct 13, 2009 3:32:16 AM

Note to Anon Oct 12 9:50:37 (and all others):

Keep about 10-12 interviews if you are getting a lot. Try not to schedule them back to back so you can get from room to room and still breathe. Keep some interviews with some of the lower tier schools in case you don't click with the higher ranked schools.

The rookie mistake thread contains good advice to all.

Try to get some practice with 2-3 people who have been through the AALS drill.

Posted by: Prof at Tier 1 School | Oct 13, 2009 12:37:19 AM

Someone told me that 6-10 interviews is excellent. You aren't too rushed but have a decent selection.

Posted by: anon | Oct 13, 2009 12:36:55 AM

Texas Southern candidate--thanks for sharing. You are helping to keep the hope alive! : )

Posted by: anon | Oct 13, 2009 12:33:09 AM

anon, I would drop to about 5.

Posted by: anon | Oct 12, 2009 10:09:23 PM

Texas Southern called tonight, FWIW.

Posted by: anon | Oct 12, 2009 9:52:02 PM

I have 21 interviews and feel that I should drop some so I can focus on the ones I am most interested in. What is a more reasonable number? I was thinking between 5-10.

Posted by: anon | Oct 12, 2009 9:50:37 PM

Thanks Semolina. It does make sense. Good luck this year!

Posted by: anon | Oct 12, 2009 3:06:31 PM

Has anyone yet received an invitation to interview with Arkansas-Fayetteville?

Posted by: Steve | Oct 12, 2009 12:53:07 PM

Semolina -
Thank you for sharing these stories - this makes a LOT of sense and I could see myself making those same mistakes. Good luck to you this time around!

Posted by: anon | Oct 11, 2009 6:55:57 PM

I am by no means an expert, and would love to hear other thoughts and perspectives. But there are many mistakes that I made. I think my biggest eye opener was that this is a confrontational, almost adversarial process. I remember in one interview I was asked about a paper that I had written, and the interviewer, who was very nice, asked me about whether the issue I was studying had any First Amendment aspects/implications.

I hadn't thought about my project from a 1st Amendment perspective, and was honest and said, I had never thought about it. Everyone seemed so friendly, that it seemed like I was workshoping my paper and getting all these feedback. What I didn't realize was that the feedback that I took as positive constructive criticism were the committee member's demands for me to defend my position.

This may be a big DUH for most people. But for me it was totally eye opening because EVERYONE, except for a horrible interview with rude people at George Mason, was so nice and pleasant.

For example, I remembered talking to one interviewer about future research interests, and I said that I had planned on writing a paper that defined a certain type of law. It was my understanding that there was no clear cut definition. This interviewer said, well i thought ixnay law is blah blah blah. And his answer was so succinct and crisp--and correct. I told him that he was correct. But at the time I didn't realize what he was saying indirectly was, "I see no need for your proposed project if I can define your project in 20 seconds." He was inviting me to engage him and say, "yes you're right, ixnay law is what you say, but others think of it as this, and my goal is to find what these definitions have in common."

But because he didn't ask me to defend my project directly, I was naive and yes, stupid, and did not do the work.

I am treating these interviews and discussions of my research projects as though I am an expert, and NO ONE can tell me a better way to do it. Of course, I am going to be respectful. Totally respectful. But I feel like there is an unspoken language in these interviews. And you have to understand that questions can sometimes have both manifest and latent functions.

I realized a lot of this after going to a number of academic job talks at various local universities.

I dont know if this makes sense at all.

Posted by: Semolina | Oct 11, 2009 6:32:41 PM

I'm a "rookie" and have had three pre-AALS interviews, each one has been a bit different. I'd say the two "mistakes" I've made (although they may not be fatal) are 1) forgetting that there should be a period at the end of a sentence when I answer a question (I tend to be long winded) and 2) seeming overly excited about the prospects of the job. Thoughts by others with experience?

Posted by: anon | Oct 11, 2009 8:41:32 AM

I have only one interview so far, and I am still going. You only need one to be in the game, and it is the only game in town, so to speak.

Semolina, I ditto the inquiry about the rookie mistakes, if you are comfortable sharing and can spare the time.

Posted by: anon99 | Oct 10, 2009 8:50:59 PM


Are there some "rookie mistakes" you can advise us rookies about now?

Posted by: anon | Oct 10, 2009 1:16:39 PM

I have 5 interviews, only 4 of which are in DC, and I will be at AALS. In fact, I was planning on going when I only had 2 interviews in DC. I think the experience will be invaluable. Also, every time I travel to a conference I make and/or reinforce great contacts. Finally, it would still be expensive to make the individual trips as opposed to meeting with the schools in once place.

Posted by: anon | Oct 9, 2009 9:17:03 PM

@ anon | Oct 9, 2009 5:37:31 PM
I interviewed 5 years ago with AALS with 9 interviews and no call backs. I was shocked not to get any call backs at the time. But after a number of conversations, about my performance, I realized that I was making so many rookie mistakes.

Now, its a few years later, and for a number of reasons I am a stronger candidate. I have double the interviews, and with much better schools. Now I am not saying that I think I am going to get a job this time. I do believe, however, that the knowledge that I gained from my first AALS was invaluable in preparing for this, my second attempt. If you can afford it, and you have 5 interviews, and are seriously committed to getting a job teaching law, I would go. Five interviews is a lot of practice. And you can even call your interviewers back afterwards if you are not successful and ask for frank advice/assessments.

I did that with one school and my contact on the appointments committee was surprisingly frank about my weaknesses. I was able to, hopefully, work on those weaknesses over the past few years.

And the best case scenario is...one (or all) of your five interviews will lead to a call back and subsequently a job offer. Hell, you only need one.

I wish you (and everyone else) the best in this insane process.

Posted by: Semolina | Oct 9, 2009 7:10:09 PM

I've only got three so far, but I'm going to go. Why not? It only takes one call back and one offer. Besides that, even if it isn't going to happen this year, getting some familiarity with the process has to be valuable.

Of course, I live within driving distance, so I'm just looking at the cost of a hotel room. If I were flying from Anchorage or otherwise incurring significant costs, I might rethink things.

Posted by: anon | Oct 9, 2009 5:47:11 PM

My phone has gone silent this week. I think it is mostly over, maybe a cancellation here or there? I have 5 interviews and am feeling like it isn't going to happen this year. Anybody else with 5 or so interviews . . . anyone considering canceling their AALS trip?

Posted by: anon | Oct 9, 2009 5:37:31 PM

Is there anything going on out there? Hoping for one or two more calls . . . We'll see.

Posted by: anon | Oct 9, 2009 5:07:05 PM


Posted by: anon | Oct 8, 2009 8:30:45 PM

Catholic University is seeking visitors (not tenure track) and is interested principally in coverage in Constitutional Law and Commercial Law.

Posted by: Kathryn Kelly | Oct 8, 2009 4:08:42 PM

Callback at Santa Clara, in tax.

Posted by: anon | Oct 7, 2009 7:37:46 PM

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