Reviews of Behind The Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships
 

 

Kimm Alayne Walton, J.D., author of the national best-seller Guerilla Tactics for Getting the Legal Job of Your Dreams, says:

  • “[T]he wonderful Debra Strauss . . . is without question America’s judicial clerkship maven. She has a new book coming out on judicial clerkships, called Behind the Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships, and if you’re going to be doing a clerkship (or you’re thinking about looking for one!) I strongly urge you to read it. Debra not only conducts seminars around the country about judicial clerkships, but she’s a former federal judicial clerk herself. If there’s anything to know about judicial clerkships, she knows it!”

– in What Law School Doesn't Teach You... But You Really Need To Know! 431-432 (Harcourt Legal & Professional Publications, Inc. 2000)

Some Sample Comments. . .
From Law School Deans, Professors, and Career Services Professionals:

  • "Highly Recommended: . . .This is a wonderfully written and fairly comprehensive resource for students who are beginning their judicial clerkship exploration. The author is a national judicial clerkship guru. Her book includes information on the value of a clerkship, the keys to success in finding a clerkship, an overview of the courts and clerkship opportunities, the nuts and bolts of the application and interview process, and suggested resources and tools for your search. . ."
  • “Behind the Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships by Debra M Strauss, Esq. is a must-read for every law student . . ."
  • “Debra M. Strauss draws from the experiences of clerks and judges to explain all aspects of judicial clerkships and demystify the application process.”
  • “Excellent new book containing extensive information about clerkships.”
  • “Written by a former judicial clerk, this excellent book explains all aspects of clerkships-what they are, what kind of work judicial clerks do, why you should apply, how to find and apply for the court and clerkship right for you, how to draft a successful application and give a strong interview, etc.”
  • "In the book Behind the Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships, author Debra Strauss provides an excellent description of the roles of clerks within different courts. . . This is the most thorough resource available geared toward students for judicial clerkships."
  • "It is an excellent book, and I know it will really enhance our students' understanding of clerkships. Very nice work."
  • “This is quite an achievement and a real contribution to helping people who might achieve these positions but lack the knowledge and sophistication about how to do it.”
  • “Thank you for sending me a copy of your comprehensive new book. A great deal of thought has obviously gone into it, and everyone working in the clerkship world will be a beneficiary of your efforts.”
  • "Your book is a wonderful resource that every clerkship aspirant should read cover to cover."
  • "Indeed I do have multiple copies of your book and highly recommend it to our students.”
  • “[W]e have a GREAT book about applying for clerkships that you really should read as soon as possible. . .”

From Judges:

  • "A recently published book, Behind the Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships, by Debra M. Strauss, an adjunct professor of law and co-director of the Federal Judicial Extern Honors Program at Pace University School of Law, gives students and law graduates significant guidance in how to negotiate the process of applying for a clerkship." See Magistrate Judge Lisa Margaret Smith, "Hiring Law Clerks," Federal Bar Council Newsletter, Vol. IX, No. 5, p. 17, Dec. 2002.
  • “Congratulations on the publication of your book . . . I’ve already recommended it to one of my former interns." (A U.S. District Judge)
  • "Excellent! I can only recommend it to those trying for clerkships. There are a few chapters I wish some people looking for clerkships would read in detail -- such as which court and judge should an applicant look to work. Often people come here wishing to be in state court or criminal court. Good work." (A U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge)
  • "Thank you for . . . the truly fine book. Apart from the quality of the work, I was very touched by your dedication . . . " (A U.S. Court of Appeals Judge)
  • “It’s a wonderful accomplishment and will certainly be of great value to many generations of law students since it provides answers to questions and information not otherwise available in a single source.” (A U.S. Magistrate Judge)

From Students:

  • “First off, your book is excellent."
  • “Your book is REALLY good. I'm on my second reading of it now to make sure I don't miss any info.”
  • “First and foremost, thanks for writing such a great book. I am a 2L and I feel much more prepared after my first skim. I am sure it will continue to be very helpful to me.”
  • "Again, your book has been an enormous help with the entire process. It's a great tool for students looking to know the ins and outs of the clerkship process."
  • “GREAT BOOK, anyone who is serious about applying for a clerkship MUST read Behind the Bench. I have researched clerkships extensively for the last few months - manuals posted online by law schools, books, websites, etc. - I thought I had it all covered and was ready to go. Not the case--the book goes above and beyond.”
  • "First, let me say--THANK YOU FOR BTB! I purchased it 1/2 way through the initial application stages, 'adjusted fire' (as we say in the military) on a few issues, and just accepted an offer from a federal district judge. . . I can't wait to start my clerkship. . .

    I attribute BTB for correcting more than a few mistakes BEFORE I committed them. Thank you for your book! Anyone who reads it will believe the same. . ."

  • "In all honesty, I was a very long shot to get a federal clerkship. Yesterday, my first-choice judge called and offered me a position. It's district level, which I wanted because I want to be a trial attorney. I couldn't be happier.

    My school's CSO office was completely worthless in this endeavor. In fact, my CSO advisor specifically told me that I shouldn't apply for federal clerkships, as she considered me unqualified. (Perhaps I'll thank her on Monday for the extra motivation that her "advice" provided.)

    The only real advice I ever had throughout the entire process was your book and this forum. And practically everything I did to get this clerkship was "by the book." What a fantastic source of information. There's no way I could have gotten my clerkship without it.

    Thank you VERY much,

    - A proud judicial clerk-to-be"

From Attorneys, Bar Associations, and Others:

  • For a more detailed commentary, see the superlative book review appearing on the web site IMDiversity.com -- "Behind The Bench, The Guide To Judicial Clerkships: Advice from the Leading Expert on Judicial Clerkships" -- which highlights key attributes and gives the reasons why your research should start with a careful reading of this book.
  • PLUS read the in-depth book review published by the ABA Judicial Division Lawyers Conference in the Judicial Division Record, Vol. 6, Issue 3, Spring 2003, p. 18 -- Emily J. Barnhart, Publications Chair and Philadelphia attorney writes: "I highly recommend Behind the Bench: The Guide to Judicial Clerkships not only as an indispensable resource to law students about to embark on the quest for a clerkship, but also to judges as a reference and to attorneys interested in reconnecting with the judicial process and the administration of justice." She describes the positive reception the book received at the Midyear Meeting of the American Bar Association, including comments from judges and prominent members of the ABA. For the full article, click on ABA Book Review.
  • NEW! Look for the most recent book review appearing in Student Lawyer, the magazine of the ABA Student Division -- Schell, Julie, “Want a clerkship? An expert's book is certain to help,” Student Lawyer, Vol. 32, No. 1, p. 14 (American Bar Association Publishing, September 2003). According to Ms. Schell, judicial clerkship program coordinator at Columbia Law School, "Strauss covers just about everything you need to know to get started on the path to a clerkship." She concludes, "the book is essential for anyone who wants the lowdown on clerkships." To read this review in its entirety, see Student Lawyer Review.

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