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Why does Covington request references?

Our goal in speaking with an applicant's references is to develop a more complete and detailed understanding of the candidate and his or her qualifications. Thorough inquiries of an applicant's references are a distinctive and crucial element of the firm's hiring process for potential summer associates. This allows us to look beyond the candidate's paper record or relatively brief campus interview. We ask every candidate for summer associate positions to provide two to three references who can speak to the candidate's qualifications, including analytical and writing ability, judgment, maturity, and collegiality.

Who are appropriate references?

For a candidate who has worked in a legal position previously (typically during a summer or externship), we ask to speak with a lawyer or judge who is familiar with the candidate's legal work. A prospective applicant should not be dissuaded from applying to the firm for this reason, and we frequently rely on references from non-legal employers, faculty, and other sources.

What is the size of the summer program?

For the size summer program in each U.S. office, please refer to the NALP forms, including current and past as they may vary by year.

Does the firm permit split summers?

We encourage summer associates to spend the entire summer with us. Over years of experience, we have found that this tends to work best both for the firm and the summer associate. However, we do allow summer associates to split their summer, provided that they begin their summer at the firm and remain with us for a minimum of eight weeks.

What types of work are given to summer associates?

In recent summers, our summer associates were involved in projects as diverse as:

  • Helped prepare appellate briefs in nine different federal circuits and the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Researched human rights and environmental issues related to the construction of an oil pipeline through the Caspian region.
  • Participated in drafting television contracts for numerous sports leagues.
  • Analyzed issues involving the establishment of a WiFi network on the National Mall.
  • Assisted with securities litigation, white collar criminal investigations, and evaluation of anti-kickback provisions for major pharmaceutical clients.
  • Examined a diverse range of Constitutional issues relating to Presidential power to decline to follow Congressional enactments.
  • Assessed whether the author of a New York Times bestselling work concerning terrorism would be able to maintain his confidential sources under the First Amendment.
  • Analyzed the separation of power aspects in law enforcement searches of Congressional offices.
  • Worked on the Eighth Amendment issues surrounding the confinement conditions at the DC Jail.