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While you may just be on the cusp of beginning your internship this summer, we know that many of you are already thinking ahead to next summer and weighing the pros and cons of spending it in the private sector. Below, we offer some thoughts you may find helpful as you consider whether to participate in the Early Interview Program (EIP).

The choice of whether to spend a summer at a private law firm is uniquely personal, and there is a range of reasons that such a position may make sense for individual students. OPIA advisors remain glad to work with you toward your public interest goals whether you spend the summer, a few years, or even a long-term career at a private law firm. Our goal is to empower every HLS student to make informed career choices that best suit their unique interests and circumstances.

To make wise decisions, though, it is critical to have accurate information. To ensure that a decision to pursue private sector work is informed by your own personal needs and interests, rather than myths about the alternative, we’ve addressed some of the most common misconceptions about public interest law. We also encourage you to watch the recording of OPIA’s Is the Early Interview Program Right for Me? panel from March to hear perspectives from students and advisors. OPIA has an extensive video library of similar programs.

Also remember that OPIA offers a Public Interest Interview Program (PIIP) each fall, as well as other job fair and interview programs throughout the year, providing opportunities for students to interview with employers hiring for summer internships and post-graduate positions. Approximately 125 employers from government, non-profit, and other public interest sectors usually participate in PIIP, either through interviews or resume collection.

To further help with your decision-making process, consider the following factors: