The Straus Institute is committed to helping you advance your career.
We support our students' career development by providing the following services:
Career Workshops and Special Presentations
The Straus Institute offers programs on topics including resume and cover letter preparation, interviewing techniques, and other strategies throughout the year. We also invites speakers, often alumni, from various firms, agencies, and companies to speak with our students. These presentations provide students an opportunity to learn more about various practice areas, ask questions, and network with potential employers on-campus.
Students work with faculty and staff to explore opportunities that align with their interests and experience. Students may have their CV/resumes and cover letters reviewed by staff members.
Online Jobs Board and Resource Library
The Straus Institute receives job listings from alumni and employers for a variety of positions throughout the academic year. Students may search available listings on Handshake, our web-based career management program.
While we are deeply invested in the success of our students, we do not place students directly into jobs within the United States or guarantee employment upon graduation. Rather, we implement relevant programs and effectively guide our students in their professional endeavors.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are my prospects of getting a job in the US as an LLM student?
Upon graduation, there are limited short- and long-term career opportunities for foreign attorneys in the US, and these highly-competitive jobs are primarily based in New York. A great majority of our foreign students find that their LLM and/or MDR degrees can enhance and advance their professional prospects internationally, most commonly at law firms and private corporations in their countries of origin. Although we offer support to all of our students in pursuing relevant opportunities, we advise all of our incoming foreign LLM and MDR students to begin their studies with a plan to work outside the US upon graduation.
Is the bar exam a requirement to practice law in the United States?
Yes, in order to practice any type of law on a permanent basis in the United States, bar admission is required. Each state has its own exam and bar admission requirements, and we encourage students to read more about this topic on the American Bar Association website.
What should Foreign LLM students do to secure a job?
Identifying and securing a position in the US (or internationally) requires a great deal of effort on behalf of the student, as there is no set timeline when foreign students are hired and opportunities often arise sporadically based on employers' needs. As such, foreign students must dedicate themselves year-round, and often well beyond graduation, to a successful job search.
A small number of openings arise due to a student's networking efforts and a student's ability to align his or her skills with an employer's business prospects or current projects. Students may network and develop professional relationships with employers through events and programs at Pepperdine, off-campus professional opportunities, and job fairs. Students additionally may send unsolicited (self-initiated) emails to market their skills and experiences to employers, and our program may also connect students with relevant alumni and faculty. Lastly, students have reported securing employment by informing previous contacts in the U.S. and abroad regarding their professional goals. We advise students to use a multitude of the strategies above in securing a job, and Straus provides workshops, counseling, and resources to support your job search efforts.
Are there visa requirements to pursue Optional Practical Training and stay in the U.S. upon graduation?
Yes, it is the student's responsibility to learn about the visa regulations for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT). Pepperdine's Office of International Student Services is available to educate foreign Straus students and alumni regarding their options for working in the U.S.