As matriculated law students you have agreed to the following career and professionalism rules.


  1. BE RESPONSIVE TO EVERYBODY – employers, professors, alumni, staff, deans, and peers.
  2. READ ALL EMAILS – as an attorney you will get anywhere between 30-50 emails a day depending on where you work; as a student you get on average 10-15 emails.  Scan them all because it is your job to do so.
  3. BE RESPECTFUL TO EVERYBODY – no matter who they are or what they do; never underestimate how much further kindness can get you in life than being mean or nasty.
  4. BE PERFECT – strive to be “mistake free” in everything you produce, especially your application materials (e.g., resumes, cover letters, writing samples).  DO NOT make it easier for an employer to toss your application to the side.
  5. ALWAYS RSVP WHEN ASKED – many employer and school events require you to RSVP; make sure you do it.  DO NOT just show up at an event without RSVP’g (unless the event says that RSVPs are encouraged but not necessary).  It is considered rude to do so otherwise.
  6. FOLLOW THROUGH WITH YOUR COMMITMENTS – if you RSVP, you must show up.  If you cannot make the event, let the organizer know FAR IN ADVANCE (last minute drop outs for no good reason are unprofessional and require a written apology).


  1. ALL APPLICATION MATERIALS MUST BE A TRUE AND ACCURATE ACCOUNT OF YOUR INFORMATION – lying on your resume, doctoring your transcript, or using someone else’s work for your writing sample are just some examples of actions that can result in disciplinary measures as drastic as expulsion.
  2. DO NOT MISS DEADLINES – especially regarding on campus interviews.  OCS will always give you ample time to upload documents and apply to employers, but we cannot make exceptions for anyone that turns in their materials late.
  3. DO NOT MISS INTERVIEWS – similar to Professionalism Rule 6 above, you are expected to make any interview for which you schedule.  Showing up late (or not at all) is disrespectful to the employer and makes the school, and yourself, look unprofessional.  A written apology will be required.  IF YOU MISS MORE THAN ONE INTERVIEW OCS reserves the right to cancel your other interviews and ban you from participating in any other on campus interview programs.
  4. If given an offer of employment YOU ARE GENERALLY NOT OBLIGATED TO ACCEPT ON THE SPOT.



  • Internship programs that are specifically for HUSL students (applying indicates that you will accept on the spot) – E.g., eBay, Marriott, Microsoft
  • Some Judges, especially alumni – you can still ask for time to deliberate, but they have the right to deny that request
  • If a contact reaches out to the employer for you and encourages them to hire you


5. ONCE YOU ACCEPT AN OFFER – DO NOT apply to any other jobs, or reverse your acceptance because you want something different; YOU MUST WITHDRAW from any other pending applications.



Students may be subject to disciplinary measures that could be recorded in their permanent files, which in turn could affect their character and fitness requirements for the bar.

Lauren R. Jackson
Assistant Dean of Career Services

Deborah K. Baker
Director of Career Services

Mo Del Villar
Assistant Director of Career Services

Room 209, Notre Dame Hall

Hours of Operation

Contact Us
(202) 806-8135

Symplicity Students Portal

Make an Appointment

Conducting Your Job Search


The Office of Career Services is dedicated to providing students with the foundation necessary for successful career development and advancement. Our aim is to help prepare Howard Law students in their pursuit of legal careers and in their roles as future leaders in America and the global community.

The Office of Career Services provides a variety of panels, seminars and workshops designed to assist students in:

  • assessing short and long-range career goals,
  • identifying skills, abilities and interests,
  • exploring career options in the legal profession,
  • making satisfying career choices,
  • searching for employment opportunities,
  • developing application documents, and
  • preparing for employment interviews.

Programs include the “Mock Interview Day,” “Job Search Strategies,” “Corporate Law Careers,” “An Introduction to Public Interest Law Careers,” “Strategies for Success for Minority Lawyers in Large Law Firms,” “How to Start and Build a Successful Solo Practice,” and “Alternative Careers Seminar.” Lawyers and jurists from cities throughout the U.S, many of them Howard Law graduates, participate in these panels.

  • The Office of Career Services hosts several major on-campus recruitment programs for students throughout the academic year. The Fall On-Campus Recruitment Program features approximately 150 major law firms, corporations, public interest agencies, and federal government agencies each year. These employers recruit at Howard University School of Law to fill summer and permanent vacancies. Over 1,500 interviews were coordinated during last year’s Fall recruitment season. Additionally, approximately 75 non-visiting employers per year request the Office of Career Services to facilitate resume collection services. Students are also able to interview at various job fairs sponsored by bar associations and private entities throughout the nation, including the Cook County Minority Job Fair, DuPont Job Fair, Equal Justice Works Career Fair, BLSA Mid-East Job Fair, and the Patent Law Interview Program. 
  • Each January, our students are invited to participate in the Washington, DC/Baltimore Public Service Career Fair. Seven (7) area law schools comprise the consortium that sponsors this recruiting event. As a member school, our students are able to engage in job interviews, résumé collection services, and table talk with approximately 100 public interest/public service employers.
  • Individual career counseling and application document review is available. We are able to help students develop a sound job search strategy, assist them in exploring career options, and provide cover letter and resume review services by appointment only. 
  • The Office of Career Services receives and posts approximately 1,000 job vacancy announcements each year. The database is updated daily, and contains job postings for part-time, summer, and permanent employment opportunities. 
  • The Career Connection, our bi-weekly e-newsletter, contains special notices to students about upcoming recruitment programs, networking events, panels, workshops, hiring programs, and announcements concerning career and professional development opportunities. The e-newsletter is sent to students via HUSL email. 
  • Graduating students seeking employment outside the Washington, DC metropolitan area may request permission to review job listings at other ABA-approved law schools through reciprocity agreements.

We are committed to:

  • Offer instructional programs and services that help students explore various legal and non-traditional careers and enhance the skills they need for successful job searches 
  • Maintain written and electronic career development and employment resources 
  • Provide on-campus interview opportunities for legal employers throughout the nation to recruit our students for part-time, summer, and permanent employment, and facilitate participation in off-campus job fairs 
  • Develop partnerships and cultivate relationships with employers in order to develop employment opportunities and increase the visibility of Howard University School of Law in the legal community


  • Symplicity 
    The Office of Career Services relies heavily on the Internet to communicate and interact with its students and graduates. A good portion of our Web services are delivered securely and confidentially via Through Symplicity, students can participate in on-campus recruiting programs, search job postings, research employers, and network with fellow students and alumni. The system also provides a personalized calendar of career programming events and serves as a personal student employment profile center. Students are provided training and usernames/ passwords in November of their first year. 
  • Video Interviewing 
    Video interview services are available for students unable to travel to out-of-town interviews. Some restrictions may apply, so interested students should contact us in advance to determine if this option is feasible. 
  • Print Library 
    We maintain a library of print resources on a variety of career-related topics, including job search techniques, interview skills, alternative careers, resume preparation, and employer directories. 
  • Online Subscriptions 
    We maintain subscriptions to career and job websites, e.g., Opportunities in Public Affairs, and Internships-USA. 
  • Computer Lab 
    A computer lab is located in Room 212, Notre Dame Hall. Use is restricted to career-related functions, e.g. conducting research for employment interviews and printing application documents.

Additional Resources for Students with Disabilities

  • Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students with Disabilities The Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students with Disabilities (WRP) is a recruitment and referral program that connects public and private sector employers nationwide with highly motivated postsecondary students and recent graduates with disabilities who are eager to prove their abilities in the workplace through summer or permanent jobs. The WRP provides students with disabilities in all fields of study the opportunity to market their abilities to a wide variety of potential employers across the United States, sharpen their interviewing skills during a required one-on-one meeting with a WRP recruiter, and gain valuable skills, experience, and contacts on the job.

Applicants for the program must:

  • Have a disability AND 
  • Be a U.S. citizen AND 
  • Be enrolled in an accredited institution of higher education on a substantially full-time basis (unless the severity of the disability precludes the student from taking a substantially full-time load) to seek a degree OR 
  • Be enrolled in such an institution as a degree-seeking student taking less than a substantially full-time load in the enrollment period immediately prior to graduation OR 
  • Have graduated from such an institution within the past year. 
    The WRP is run on an annual basis and requires student applicants to have an interview with a WRP recruiter during an on-campus recruitment visit. The interviews take place during the fall semester of each year. The WRP is usually coordinated on college campuses by Disability Services or Career Services offices. Currently, nearly 200 colleges and universities participate in the program. Qualified students should contact our office to learn more about this program.
  • IMPACT Career Fair for Law Students and Attorneys with Disabilities 
  • Held each August in Washington, DC. Sponsored by Georgetown University Law Center and the University of Arizona Rogers College of Law.
  • The National Association of Law Students with Disabilities 
  • NALSWD is a coalition of law students dedicated to disability advocacy and the achievement of equal access, inclusion, diversity, and non-discrimination in legal education and in the legal profession. NALSWD aims to support the growing number of law students with disabilities by providing a safe and supportive community to connect with other students with disabilities from across the country, networking with lawyers with disabilities, information about career opportunities, and advice on succeeding in law school and the legal profession. The success of NALSWD as an organization depends on the active participation of law students with disabilities. 
  • Career Expo for People with Disabilities
    Sponsored by Careers & the disABLED Magazine, the Career Expo for People with Disabilities brings industry and government together with people with disabilities in all career disciplines. The Career Expos are held in Washington, DC each November and March.


Exploring Your Career

Where Do I Start?

Symplicity is Howard University School of Law’s online recruitment management system. It is your primary vehicle to search for internship and employment opportunities, RSVP for information sessions and other events, and participate in on-campus recruitment programs.
(Symplicity one-on-one trainings are available through the Office of Career Services.)

Practice Area Research - Public Sector

Harvard Law Career and Specialty Guides

Yale Law Career Guides & Advice for Students

Public Service Jobs Directory (PSJD)

Practice Area Research - Private Sector

Major, Lindsey & Africa’s Practice Area Summary Law Center Practice Areas

Vault Guide to Legal Practice Areas 2016 Edition
(Available for view in the Office of Career Services)

Job Listing Databases & Resources - Public Sector

A comprehensive career resource database, public sector employer search engine, and public sector job database.
A database providing both legal and non-legal public interest internships and full time employment opportunities.

Washington Council of Lawyers: Job Digest
A DC based public interest bar association that provides a monthly listing of available public interest legal employment opportunities in the region to members.

U.S. Department of Justice Careers Page
A central resource to learn about opportunities across the DOJ, the largest employer of attorneys in the country.
The primary federal employment job search database.

The University of AZ Government Honors and Internship Handbook
Provides a listing of internship and Honors Attorney Program opportunities for federal agencies, as well as opportunities with state, county and municipal government agencies.
(See the Office of Career Services for the website and password.)

Job Listing Databases & Resources - Private Sector

Intercollegiate Job Bank
A central database of post-graduate opportunities from Symplicity job listings of law schools across the country and in every state.
(See the Office of Career Services for the website and password.)

1L Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) Scholars Opportunities with LCLD Members
Lists LCLD Member organizations who are actively searching for 1L Scholars
The world’s #1 job site with both legal and non-legal employment listings

Federal Judges’ Contact Spreadsheet For Internships(link is external)

Internet and Online Resources

Tips For Drafting Professional Correspondence

Networking Emails

  • Introduce yourself
  • If relevant, mention how you acquired the contact’s information
  • Explain why you are reaching out
  • Provide some background about yourself
  • Offer to accommodate the contact’s schedule in order to set up a time/ mode of communication
  • Thank the contact for their time

Sample Networking Email

Thank You Email

  • Should be sent within 24 hours following the interview (the earlier, the better)
  • Thank the interviewer for his/ her time
  • Highlight important parts of your conversation
  • Reiterate key skills and/ or your interest in the position
  • Keep the message short

Sample Thank You Email

Accepting and Turning Down An Offer

  • Weigh all options carefully before accepting or turning down an offer. Once an offer is accepted, you may not renege. The decision is final.
  • When an offer is made, immediately thank the employer and request the date by which the employer would like a decision. Be sure to respond within that time frame.
  • Whether accepting or turning down an offer, a phone call to the primary contact is preferred, followed by an email reiterating the conversation. Do not leave messages to turn down an offer on voicemail or with an assistant.
  • When turning down an offer, do so in the most diplomatic way possible. Do not burn bridges that may prove useful in future employment searches during or after law school. Thank the employer for their consideration and provide a thoughtful explanation.

Sample Email Turning Down An Offer

Tips For Writing A Great Resume

HUSL 1L Resume Template

The Purpose of A Resume

Your resume serves to introduce you to potential employers, to highlight your significant achievements, and to convince employers to extend an interview to you.

What To Do

  • Your resume should generally be no longer than one page (discuss exceptions with your Career Counselor).
  • Use active verbs to start each sentence.
  • Use a conservative font such as Times New Roman or Arial.
  • Font size should be between 10.5- 12 points.
  • Use post office designations when abbreviating state names – two capital letters with no periods.

What Not To Do

  • Forget to check your resume for typos. As a rule of thumb, you should print out the resume and have a friend, family member, or Career Counselor take a 2nd look. Employers will toss resumes into the trash for small typos or formatting errors, no matter how qualified the candidate.
  • Include an “Objectives” or “Summary of Qualifications” section.


  • Begin your resume with your name, address, telephone number, and email address
  • If you have a permanent address that shows a connection to the employer’s region, list both a current and permanent address. If not, only list your current address.
  • Always use a professional email address, such as your Howard Law account.

Education Section

  • In reverse chronological order, list all schools you have attended since university, degrees earned, months/years of graduation or expected graduation, location of the school (city/ state), and relevant honors and activities. You may also include relevant law school coursework.
  • In general, if your GPA is in the top half of the class, include your GPA, rank, or both. If this information is not included, employers will believe the information was deleted for a reason.
  • NEVER estimate or round up your rank or GPA. NEVER use approximate numbers. List a specific bracket only as assigned by the Law School Registrar: top 10, 20, 25, 33, 50, or 75 percent.

Experience Section

  • The preferred heading is “Experience,” not “Employment,” to allow you to include volunteer, clinical, or school experiences that are relevant to potential employers.
  • If you have a lot of experience (more than one employer) in a particular industry that you’re interested in, you might consider splitting this up. For example: Healthcare Experience (list your relevant employers) and then Other Experience (list all other employers).
  • List your employment in reverse chronological order, detailing the employer’s full name, city/state, title of your position, and dates of employment.
  • Use past tense action verbs for former employers and present tense action verbs for present employers (see verb list below).
  • Your descriptions should emphasize your responsibilities, contributions, and achievements. Most importantly, focus on those tasks that use skills relevant to the practice of law. Such skills include research and writing, negotiating, analyzing data, decision-making, communicating, and supervising.
  • When describing your experience, make sure you give specific details so that the employer can see more fully the breadth of your experience. For example, rather than simply stating, “conducted research and drafted memoranda,” provide a sense of the substance of the work, e.g. “conducted research and drafted memoranda regarding copyright issues, including works-for-hire, payment of royalties, and injunctive relief against infringers.”
  • When describing non-legal experience, focus on research, writing, organization/ attention to detail, management, business development/ outreach.

(Optional) Community Service Section

  • • If you are looking to develop a career in public service, it would be advisable to emphasize relevant volunteer or community service. Detail experiences as described in the “Experience” section.

(Optional) Skills Section

  • For language skills, use the following descriptors:
    • Native: only if your first language was other than English
    • Fluent: can speak, read, and write
    • Proficient: can speak and read
    • Basic or Working Knowledge: can speak and understand, but wouldn’t be comfortable holding a conversation in this language for very long

(Optional) Interests Section

  • If you include an “Interests” section, be as detailed as possible so that it prompts the interviewer to ask you about it. They would be less likely to ask you about “Reading” than they would about your love of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Submitting Your Documents To Potential Employers

  • Follow the employer’s instructions as to their preferred method of receiving application materials.
  • For paper submissions, print on high-quality paper.
  • For electronic submissions,
    • Be sure to convert documents to PDF to preserve formatting.
    • Save documents with your last name and the type of document (cover letter, resume, etc.) as the file name.

Tips For Writing A Great Cover Letter

Sample Cover Letter

The Purpose of A Cover Letter

  • Allows you to convey strengths and experiences beyond those listed in your resume
  • Often serves as a preliminary writing sample
  • Provides you the opportunity to set yourself apart from other applicants
  • Demonstrates your enthusiasm and fit for the employer and the position

What to Do

  • Write in general business letter style with a professional tone
  • Double and triple check for typos and grammatical errors • Limit use of sentences that start with “I”
  • Use active verbs whenever possible, avoid “ing” endings
  • Use persuasive language
  • Limit text to no more than 1 page, between 3 and 4 paragraphs
  • Use between 11 and 12-point font
  • Assure that font sizes and styles are consistent throughout
  • Make use of “topic sentences” to start off your paragraphs (e.g., “My legal research and writing skills have been well-developed through my prior and current work experience.”)

What Not to Do

  • Neglect to sell yourself to the employer by just regurgitating your resume in prose form
  • Convey a sense that you don’t know much about the organization
  • Use cookie-cutter text

How to Address A Cover Letter

  • Never address a cover letter “To Whom it May Concern”
  • If there is no recruiter listed in the job description, on their website or on, contact the employer and request the name and title of the hiring attorney
  • As a last resort, a letter may be addressed to the “Hiring Coordinator” or “Hiring Committee”


Who you are, what you want, connection to employer

  • Introduce yourself (year in school, name of law school)
  • Identify what position you are applying for and whether you have been personally recommended/ referred by someone they know
  • Briefly state why you would be a great fit for the position (1-2 sentences at most)

Body of A Cover Letter

Highlight interest in employer and skills related to the position

  • Briefly mention your interest in the employer and/or practice area
  • Address interest in the particular geographic location if outside your school location or city of origin
  • Keeping the job description in mind, discuss previous work experience, as well as degrees/ certificates/ or other credentials, volunteer experience, leadership positions, student activities, and/or relevant coursework.
  • Provide specific examples demonstrating how you acquired skill-sets requested by the employer, “Show don’t tell”
  • Emphasize strengths, not weaknesses
  • Persuade the employer to want to hire you by creating a connection between your past experiences and the work of the organization or the position available


Contact information and next steps

  • Briefly reiterate why you would be a great fit for the position
  • Mention attached resume or other documents requested by the employer
  • Include your contact information (email and phone number)
  • If you are applying for a position in a different city, let the employer know if you will be in town and available for an interview in the near future
  • Thank the reader

Submitting Your Documents to Potential Employers

  • Follow the employer’s instructions as to their preferred method of receiving application materials
  • For paper submissions, print on high-quality paper that matches that of your resume
  • For electronic submissions,
    • Be sure to convert documents to PDF to preserve formatting
    • Save documents with your last name and the type of document (cover letter, resume, etc.) as the file name

After Submission

  • In approximately 2 weeks, follow up with a call or email to the employer to confirm your application materials were received (unless application instructions request no such contact)

Where 1Ls Worked – Summer 2022

ACC Corporate Scholars
ACLU Washington Legislative Office
Advocates for Justice and Education, Inc. (Washington, DC)
Alvin Yearwood
American Red Cross (Washington, DC)
Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) (Washington)
AT&T Legal Department
Baker & McKenzie LLP (Washington, DC)
Bar Association of the District of Columbia (Washington, DC)
Birch, Stewart, Kolasch & Birch, LLP (Falls Church, VA)
Bread for the City (Washington, DC)
Bronx County District Attorney's Office (Bronx, NY)
Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth
Center for Survivor Agency and Justice
CleanChoice Energy
cliffe dekker hofmeyr
Commodity Futures Trading Commission
Commodity Futures Trading Commission (Washington, D.C.)
Congressional Black Caucus (not the Foundation)
D.C Court of Appeals- Judge Inez Smith-Reid
D.C. Court of Appeals, Chief Judge Blackburn- Rigsby
D.C. Superior Court
D.C. Superior Court (Washington, D.C.)
D.C. Superior Court Magistrate Judges Janet Albert and Mary Grace Rook
D.C. Superior Court Magistrate Judges Julie R. Breslow and Sean C. Staples (Washington, DC)
Dallas Association of Young Lawyers Judicial Internship
DC Housing Authority (Washington, DC)
Department of Justice- Community Relations Service
Elemental Execelerator
Ellis Ged & Bodden
Epstein, Becker & Green, P.C. (Washington, DC)
Family Workforce Centers of America
Federal Aviation Administration
Federal Housing Finance Agency (Washington, DC)
Honorable Anne-Marie Jolly, New York City Family Court
Honorable Ivan D. Davis, District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia (Alexandria, VA)
Honorable Sheila R. Tillerson Adams
Howard University School of Law (Washington, DC)
Immigration and Customs Enforcement
James E. Brown and Associates
Jason Lowe State Representative/Defense Attorney
Jet Blue (Long Island City, NY)
John Milton Attorney at Law
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan of District Court House
Judge Erika Pierson
Judge Inez Smith Reid
Judge J.P. Howard
Judge John F. McCabe
Judge Patsy Porter
Judicial Intern for the honorable Judge George Hazel
KIPP DC (Washington, D.C.)
Kowitz, Wise, St. Laurent, P.C. (Baltimore, MD)
Lita Rosario
Louisiana Center for Children's Rights (LCCR)
Macarthur Justice Center (Chicago, IL)
Marriott International, Inc. Law Department (Bethesda, MD)
Maryland Court of Appeals - The Honorable Irma S. Raker
Maryland Office of the Public Defender  (Baltimore, MD)
Microsoft (Redmond, WA)
Microsoft Corporation
Miller du toit Family Law Firm
Milller Du Toit  Attorneys
Morgan Stanley
Motley Rice LLC (Mt Pleasant, SC)
National Center for Victims of Crime (Washington, DC)
New York City Police Department (New York, NY)
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP (inclusive of Chadbourne & Parke)
Office of Administrative Hearings- Washington Bar Association Judicial Council Summer Judicial Intern Program
Office of Attorney General for the District of Columbia (Washington, DC)
Office of Congressman Crist
Office of the Inspecting Judge
Office of the New York State Attorney General's Office (New York, NY)
Office of the Public Defender
PAE (Arlington, Virginia)
Paul Strauss & Associates
Pepper Hamilton LLP (Washington, DC)
Phyllis J. Outlaw & Associates
Public Defender Service
Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (Washington, DC)
Public Defenders Office Durham County
Radiance IP Law
Robert Celestin
Robinson Kirlew & Associates, P.C.
Schiff Hardin Llp
Social Security Administration
Southern Coalition for Social Justice (Durham, NC)
Steptoe & Johnson LLP (Washington, DC)
Telesis Corporation
Temple Law Offices
Terex Corporation
The Honorable Emmet G. Sullivan, United States District Judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia (Washington, DC)
The Norman Law Firm, PLLC
U.S Attorney's Office - DC
U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia (Washington, DC)
U.S. Congress
U.S. EEOC Washington Field Office
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (Washington, DC)
U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris (Washington, D.C.)
U.S. Small Business Administration - Office of General Counsel (Washington, DC)
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
United States Attorney's Office
United States District Court for Southern District of Texas
US District Court for District of Maryland
Vera Institute of Justice (Washington, DC)
Washington Bar Association
Washington Bar Association - Judge Simmons
Washington Bar Association Judicial Council Summer Intern Program
WBA Summer Judicial Internship Program
WeddingWire Inc
Westchester County Courts
Wiley Rein LLP (Washington, DC)
Women's Legal Centre of Cape Town