Week One Down
Week One Down
My first week as a summer associate was full of new faces and a lot to remember— how to keep time; how to file everything properly and how to bill things to the right client, etc. Not exactly the kinds of things you learn in law school. That said, the orientation and training in the Orlando office made it all very manageable, and since the Accounting Department hasn’t called to yell at me yet, I don’t think I’ve messed up my time sheet too bad! Honestly though, the orientation in Orlando confirmed what I thought about Rumberger going into this summer: that it’s a firm that truly does care about the professional development of its summer associates, with an emphasis on mentoring. That’s one of the main reasons I originally applied for this position, so it’s always nice to see faith being rewarded. Also, how many firms take their employees out for a fun night at an escape room?
After orientation, it was time to actually start the work in Tallahassee. Settling in at the Tallahassee office was no problem, and everyone has been unbelievably welcoming. My first few assignments were all different and all presented interesting challenges. The first was about the division of powers in an employment setting. It involved some work looking up statutes, as well as some case law research. Another required me to look up federal law outside of the Eleventh Circuit, on an area I suspected going in there, was unlikely to be any precedent directly on point. My hunch was confirmed, since it was an issue that largely falls under the umbrella of judicial discretion. Writing briefs on issues like that are always tricky, because it requires walking the line between deference to the court but also being persuasive for your side. Of course, being too persuasive can in fact, come off as too aggressive, and my initial draft was a smidge too much. Thankfully, partner Linda Bond Edwards made some great edits to the motion and brief and we submitted it to the court. Fingers crossed it gets granted!
The final assignment was one that will keep me busy all this week and likely into next week as well. It’s a pretty tricky employment case, and the particular context of it almost certainly makes it a matter of first impression in this district, and possibly even this federal circuit. I love a good challenge, though. Plus, employment law is something I really enjoy, so I was happy to take the assignment on. It’ll be great experience getting to work on it and follow the course of the case over the summer. I’m looking forward to nine more weeks that were as great as the first!