Paralegal for the Prosecution

Over the past 7 weeks, I’ve had the incredible opportunity of interning at the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. It has provided me with a fascinating look into the legal world that has helped me immensely in exploring and considering my career interests.

It’s done this in a few ways:

  • I’ve had the opportunity to speak to and attend lunches with various high ranking members of the office who have talked about topics as wide ranging as terrorism, cybersecurity, murder trials, and advice for law school. These conversations have given me a much clearer insight into what to expect if I chose to pursue law as a career.
  • Over the past two weeks, a case I’ve helped out with has gone to trial. Here’s a link to a news article about it. The preparation for trial was a lot of work, but it was really rewarding. This was definitely a period in which I was tested and learned a lot. I learned the importance of remaining calm, collected, and accurate in stressful, time sensitive situations. Now, since the trial has started, I’ve had the opportunity to watch the trial and see the fruits of my labor. The trial process has been exciting and it has also given me yet another insight as to what it’s really like to be a lawyer.

Because of these experiences, I think I’m considering law school and being a lawyer more strongly than before. I certainly had thought about it before, but these positive experiences have pushed me further towards pursing that path.

Written by Luke Urbanczyk, BC Class of 2017

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Justice in the Southern District of New York

Urbanczyk

Attorney Preet Bahara announcing public corruption charges at the US Attorney’s Office in NYC.

For the past two weeks, I’ve interned at the US Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan. I decided to pursue this internship because I think I might want to go to law school and pursue law as a career. However, I want to make sure it’s really what I want to do before committing three years and a lot of money to law school.

Even in my first two weeks, I think this experience has equipped me with an abundance of new information and experiences that will help me ultimately make this decision.

  • I work mostly with paralegals who are a few years out of college, many of whom plan to attend law school. They’ve given me advice on practical matters like when to take the LSAT, but have also walked me through their decision process to either attend law school or do something else.
  • In addition, the office culture is not hierarchical at all. I’ve had numerous conversations with more senior members of the office in which they often tell me stories about interesting cases they’ve worked on. By sharing these stories with me, they’ve shown me how interesting and truly rewarding a career in law can be.
  • Lastly, when work is a little light in the office, I have the opportunity to watch federal court proceedings.  So, I get to see important, interesting, and exciting trials take place. It’s really nice to see the end result of the preparation for trial, which is what my job mostly consists of.

It’s a little too early for me to say if my career goals have changed as a result of my internship so far, but one thing is certain: if there’s any place that’ll help me decide if I want to be a lawyer, USAO SDNY is it.

Written by Luke Urbancyzk, BC Class of 2017