I realize the title is a tad exaggerated, but the Great Debate I am referring to is the question that some 1Ls may soon be asking: should I work or travel this summer?
Around this time of year, there are more publicized employment opportunities available to 1L students. Postings from Toronto law firms, international as well as public interest organizations, and more, are appearing on the Career Services website. However, there is the allegation that law students will have lots of opportunities to work, and fewer opportunities to take a large quantity of time-off to travel, later on.
The prospect of acquiring law-related experience is attractive. I personally have never had any sort of law firm experience and, while I have favorite law subjects, the idea of working in any area of law is enticing at this point.
On the other hand, a wise, upper-year student once said, “I will have the rest of my life to be a lawyer, but I won’t always have four months off to travel and see the world.”
I have been told that an interesting summer job or an interesting travel experience would make great interview dialogue. The important thing is to do something during your 1L summer that you can talk about with recruiters, interviewers, and of course, your friends!
For now, I am still keeping both avenues open. I still have months to decide, after all. I’m applying for interesting positions through Career Services while [regularly] checking TravelCuts, Expedia … you name it. Whether you decide to work or travel during your 1L summer may ultimately depend on a number of other factors, such as past work experience, finances, etc. If you are going through the Great Debate right now, I strongly recommend discussing your 1L summer options with the Career Services Office. They are wonderful and will provide you with lots of ideas!
In a perfect world, I would get to do both.