Alumnae/i: Refers to male and female graduates or former students of a specific school, college or university.  
alumna (female graduate)-plural alumnae;   alumnus (male graduate)

Alumnae/i Advisor Network:  Searchable database of Chicago-Kent graduates who are available for informational interviews, networking, and general questions related to a job search.

Associate:  A lawyer or attorney who is an employee, as opposed to an owner or partner, of a law firm.

Bar Exam/Multistate:  While individuals may earn a J.D. degree, they may not practice law until they have become a member of a state's bar.  Most states offer the bar exam twice a year, in February and July.  The multistate portion of the exam tests federal law as it applies to all states and the essay portion tests laws of the particular states.

Callback:  The in-depth interview students have in an employer's office, generally after having had a screening interview with the employer through the on-campus interviewing program. These are typically half-day interviews--the applicant meets with 5-7 partners and associates for approximately a half hour each--preceded or followed by lunch with several new associates.

CBA:  Chicago Bar Association.  Student rates available.  The Young Lawyers Section has committees on specific practice areas that meet monthly.  Check their website, or the second section of the Daily Law Bulletin for upcoming meetings and seminars.

Chicago Area Law Firm List:  Comprehensive listing of Chicago area law firms with four or more attorneys. Complied annually by the Chicago Consortium of Law Schools.  Available in the Symplicity Document Library.

Chicago Daily Law Bulletin:  Daily publication of the Chicago legal community.  Available in the career services office or the library.

CSO:  Career Services Office.  Also called Career Placement or Career Planning Office at other law schools.

Domestic LL.M. Student: Refers to any LL.M. student who holds a U.S. Juris Doctor Degree.

Externships: Students who wish to receive academic credit for an unpaid field work placement may do so by enrolling in an externship. Externship students work in a number of practice settings, and must work under the supervision of an attorney.

Fall Interview Season or On-Campus Interviews:  Typically, large law firms, corporations and government agencies who recruit a year in advance for their hiring needs visit law school campuses during August through December to conduct employment interviews with law students for summer and full-time associate positions.

Foreign-Trained LL.M. Student: Refers to any LL.M. student who does not hold a U.S. law degree. Also known as International LL.M. student.

Grades: Academic performance in each course is evaluated by the professor using number or letter grades. At the end of the semester you will receive a number of credits corresponding to the courses you have successfully completed. Your credit hours are multiplied by your grades to determine your "grade-point average" (GPA). GPAs provide a general indication of your overall academic performance and are used by admissions offices and employers interested in your academic history.

Hiring Partner/Hiring Attorney:  The individual, typically a partner, who is chair of the firm's Hiring Committee and who generally has been involved in the firm's recruitment program.

In-House Counsel:  Refers to a lawyer who works for a business as the company lawyer.  Generally, large corporations have sizeable legal departments and often will also use outside counsel (i.e., law firms) for litigation work.

Internships: Students who wish to volunteer or receive academic for credit position.

J.D.: From the Latin Juris Doctor ("Doctor of Law").  Is the American law degree. The degree of Juris Doctor (J.D.) is conferred upon students who satisfactorily complete 87 semester hours, including all required courses, with a quality point index of 2.3/4.0 or better; who are in residence for at least three full academic years or the equivalent; and who are recommended for the degree by the faculty.

Job Fair:  An off-campus interview program in which students pay their own travel and lodging expenses to participate in employment interviews arranged in a different city by their career services office.

Law Clerk:  Student position at a law firm whereby the law student is involved in researching, writing, filing, and other day-to-day operations of the firm.  Responsibilities of a law clerk vary with each firm and student's depth of experience.  Compensation ranges from $10-15 per hour; possibly more depending on qualifications of applicant (e.g., IP generally pays more) and level of law student.

LL.M.: An abbreviation for the Latin terms Legum Magister (male) or Legum Magistra (female), each of which means "Master of Laws." In Latin abbreviations, the plural form of a word is indicated by doubling the letter, thus "LL" is short for Laws. LL.M. programs are typically offered to attorneys who have already completed their Juris Doctor (J.D.) or equivalent program.

Law Offices of Chicago-Kent:  Located on the sixth floor of the law school, the Law Offices is one of the largest in-house clinical programs in the country.  Available to second and third year students, there are several programs which offer live-client clinical legal education for both fee based and "no charged fee" legal services.  Student interns are supervised by a Law Offices attorney and are selected each semester by a lottery process.  For details, visit their website.

Lexis/Nexis:  Computer databases of cases, statutes, regulations, newspapers, journals, business magazines, and other materials used by lawyers in doing legal and non-legal research.

Litigation Practice:  Practice of law focusing on courtroom appearances for trial advocacy, including matters ranging from personal injury to securities fraud as well as domestic relations work.

Martindale-Hubbell:  Multi-volume and on-line ( directory of private law firms and in-house corporate departments that lists lawyers, biographical information, areas of practice, and representative clients.  Includes domestic and international volumes.

Memo:  A paper written by a lawyer or law clerk that analyzes both sides of an argument to aid the lawyer in counseling the client and preparing the brief.

NALP:  National Association for Law Placement.  Organization of law schools and legal employers (mostly large law firms and some government agencies) committed to the development and advancement of fair, effective, and efficient placement and recruitment practices.

Optional Practical Training (OPT): An employment authorization granted by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service. It allows students holding F-1 visas to gain up to one year's work experience in their current field of study.

Paralegal:  An individual who has received either formal academic training or on-the-job training to assist lawyers with certain aspects of the law practice.  Responsibilities vary from employer to employer.


  • Equity Partner - A lawyer who has become an "owner" or "member" of the firm and is paid a percentage of the firm's profits that reflects the lawyer's required contribution to the firm.
  • Income Partner - has reached a level of partnership, but is not equity status.  Receives an annual salary as opposed to a draw from the firm's profits.

PIRC:  Public Interest Resource Center.  Affiliated with Kent Justice Foundation and administered through the Law Offices of Chicago-Kent.  PIRC acts as a link to non-profit organizations and other public service projects in need of volunteers for either a short or long term commitment.  Located in room 654.

Recruitment Administrator/Coordinator:  A professional who is responsible for the coordination of an employer's legal recruiting program.

Research Assistant:  Law student who assists a professor in researching specific topics or issues for possible publication.

Sullivan's:  Directory of Illinois licensed attorneys and their contact information.  Segmented by Chicago attorneys and law firms, suburban law firms, court officials (Federal, State, Circuit), government offices (City, State, Federal), corporation law departments and legal organizations.  Published annually.

Transcript: The official and permanent record of your academic achievement in the law school.

Westlaw: Computer databases of cases, statutes, regulations, newspapers, journals, business magazines, and other materials used by lawyers in doing legal and non-legal research.

Writing Sample: Many employers in the U.S. will request writing samples of candidates. Potential employers would rather see legal analysis, such as the one developed on a memo or brief. If you a good quality legal research paper, without typographical mistakes you can also send it to the potential employer as your writing sample. If you have two or more samples from which to choose, select the one that reveals your writing and legal reasoning abilities.  You should only include a writing sample if the potential employer specifically request one. Even if a writing sample is not specifically required, you should realize that your cover letter, resume, and every document you submit will be regarded as a writing sample.  Foreign-Trained LL.M. students typically submit a writing sample from their Legal Research and Writing Class. It should be 7-10 pages long and you should include a cover page with your name and information (current address and telephone number) and the title of the writing sample.