The Career and Academic Services Office understands that looking for a job can be stressful, particularly when the law student or graduate is seeking a job in an area outside the greater Washington metropolitan area. Reciprocity is one method in the job search process.
Reciprocity is a mutual exchange of privileges. Law schools use reciprocity to provide reasonable access to their career resources for law students and graduates from other law schools who agree to provide similar access and services.
It is important to remember, however, that reciprocity is only one method in the job search process. Individuals seeking jobs outside of the Washington, DC, Virginia, and Maryland area must explore many sources for finding employment, including local advertisements; local, state and national bar associations; job banks and networks; the Internet; reference publications; alumni networks; and other networking opportunities.
Reciprocity Steps for George Mason Students & Alumni
It is important to understand that every law school has its own reciprocity requirements. Law schools’ reciprocity policies can be found at on the NALP website or by calling the career services office of the school in which you are interested for information.
- Most law schools require written requests for reciprocity from the requesting law school's career services office. This request should be sent several weeks in advance of the student's/graduate's scheduled visit.
- If reciprocity is granted, it is important for the student/graduate to read and honor the reciprocity policy of the host school.
- In some geographic areas having a number of law schools in close proximity, reciprocity services may be arranged only at one law school in that area. Accordingly, requests should be made to only one of these schools.
To obtain reciprocity at another law school, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, address, telephone number, graduation year, and school for which you would like reciprocity.
For George Mason students and alumni, reciprocity is not available with other DC area law schools (Georgetown, Catholic, George Washington, University of the District of Columbia, Howard and American).
Services vary among the law schools that offer reciprocity. Generally, these services may include access to: the host law school's career services facilities at some schools this is available on a fee basis only; legal publications, directories and handouts; job listings and employment bulletins at some schools these may be available on a subscription or in-person basis.
Services generally not available are: participation in recruitment programs and job fairs; counseling; and resume review services.
The duration of reciprocity services also varies from school to school. Reciprocity services, when granted, are usually available for a limited time and for a limited number of visits. In addition, most law schools have a "blackout" period during the time when law schools are preparing for and conducting their recruitment programs in the fall and in the spring (duration varies by school).
Code of Conduct for Law Students
- Give your law school career services staff sufficient notice for them to initiate the reciprocity request.
- Read and honor the reciprocity policy of the host school. George Mason's policy is set forth below. Remember that the host law school's students and graduates have first priority at all times for the use of the career services staff and facilities.
- Call the career services office of the host school in advance of your visit.
- Bring identification and all correspondence from the host school.
- If you respond to job postings from the host school, mention this fact in your cover letter to employers.
- Give feedback to George Mason's Career and Academic Services Office about resources you found helpful.
George Mason University School of Law Reciprocity
Career and Academic Services will offer access for students and alumni of ABA –accredited law schools outside the Washington, DC metropolitan area as listed below:
- Requests for reciprocity must be made in writing by a career counseling official of the requesting law school. The requesting law school must receive written notification that reciprocity has been granted before the student/alumnus enters this office. The student/graduate must bring a copy of this letter each time they visit the GMU office.
- Services are available on a one-to-one basis only to those schools which allow GMU Law Students and/or alumni use of their facilities.
- Reciprocity visitors are permitted to use the office for three months dated from the day of their first visit to the office, or until July 1st (whichever comes first). Each renewal request will be considered as a new request, and may therefore be denied.
- The following services will be provided to the extent that the reciprocating school provides in-kind services:
- Current position vacancy announcements (except “blind postings”) accessible in our office for a three-month period
- Remote access to our online job postings for a one-month period of time (will be granted if the requesting school offers the same privileges to a GMU Law student). When applying through Symplicity, applicants are required to state that they have received access to the job listing through a reciprocal agreement.
- Resource Library Publications and Directories
- Handout materials
- The Director may deny further services to any school seen to surpass a reasonable number of requests in a given calendar year or to individuals who abuse the facilities, services or staff.
- Reciprocity will not be available between July 1 and October 15.
- Students and graduates of other schools will not be permitted to schedule campus interview appointments with prospective employers or make an appointment for counseling.
- Requests for reciprocity may be made to only one DC area law school (Georgetown, Catholic, George Mason, George Washington, University of the District of Columbia, Howard, American).
Additional information may be obtained by contacting:
Career and Academic Services
George Mason University, Antonin Scalia Law School
3301 Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22201