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Career Development Office

The Career Development Office (CDO) offers programs, individual counseling, and informational materials to educate students and alumni about the diverse career paths open to them as graduates of Yale Law School. With the assistance of CDO, students and alumni gain the confidence and knowledge to identify and achieve their career goals. CDO’s services include:

  • • Offering advice from attorney counselors specializing in the public interest and private sectors, as well as in judicial clerkships, fellowships, and law teaching.
  • • Sponsoring more than sixty-five programs each year, including panels, lectures, and informal discussions on various employment options, self-assessment, job search and interviewing skills, and quality of life issues.
  • • Hosting a recruitment program every fall for second- and third-year students. More than 150 legal employers from all parts of the country and abroad register to interview students for summer and permanent positions. Approximately twenty-five employers register to interview first-year students at CDO’s spring interview program. Yale also cosponsors two public service recruitment events and one international graduate student interview event off-campus each year.
  • • Publishing guides and brochures on career development topics and specific employment sectors. CDO also manages an online job posting system where hundreds of employers post opportunities for Yale Law students and graduates, available on CDO’s website at https://law.yale.edu/cdo.
  • • Coordinating with the Office of Alumni Affairs on YLS Career Connections, an online alumni mentor network to assist with career exploration. YLS Career Connections allows students and alumni access to more than 1,600 graduates who have offered to serve as career advisers. CDO also invites graduates to serve as mentors in residence, where they meet individually with students seeking information about particular careers.

Nearly all first- and second-year law students who seek summer legal employment are able to secure positions with law firms, government agencies, or public interest organizations. Through Summer Public Interest Fellowships, the Law School ensures that everyone who needs funding for summer public interest or government work—in the United States or abroad—receives it. Upon graduation, virtually all Yale Law students have accepted employment. These jobs include prestigious judicial clerkships; positions with private law firms, public interest organizations, or government agencies; and national and international public interest fellowships. Although New York, Washington, D.C., and California are the most popular destinations for Yale Law School graduates, members of the Class of 2016 accepted employment in twenty-eight different states. Through Yale Law School’s generous Career Options Assistance Program (COAP), graduates have the ability to obtain loan forgiveness if they choose to work in lower-paying positions, regardless of the employment sector. See Career Options Assistance Program, in the chapter Admissions, Expenses, and Financial Aid, for further details.

All employers using the services of CDO are informed of Yale Law School’s nondiscrimination policy, which states “Yale Law School is committed to a policy against discrimination based upon age, color, handicap or disability, ethnic or national origin, race, religion, religious creed, gender (including discrimination taking the form of sexual harassment), marital, parental, or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or the prejudice of clients.”

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