Section VI: Career & Professional Development Related Activity


Policy 6-1. Preamble

The primary purpose of this Section 6 of the Rules & Policies is to ensure that both current and future Duke Law students are able to maximize opportunities available in pursuit of employment, and to reinforce that the values of professional behavior extend into this aspect of student life at Duke. This entire Section 6 applies to all students enrolled at Duke Law School and to all student activity related to the pursuit of employment, whether or not a student has had "interaction" with the Career & Professional Development Center ("Career Center") or any other law school personnel.

These rules are promulgated by the Law School Committee on Student Career & Professional Development (the "Committee") pursuant to the authority of Rule 5.1 of the Law School's Rules & Policies Governing Student Professional Misconduct (the "Honor Code"), which include within their ambit any "violation of rules as established by the Law School Committee on Student Career & Professional Development". In addition to these Rules, the Committee has also promulgated certain Comments on the Rules, which Comments are intended to clarify and explain aspects of the Rules that may require interpretation. The Comments follow the Rules in the present document, and are numbered so as to correspond with the Rules which they interpret.

The Committee recognizes that not all violations of rules in Section 6 herein involve the same type of conduct and accordingly have divided rule violations into two general categories: 1. Integrity and honor violations that constitute misconduct so serious as to raise doubts about the offending student's fitness to continue as a student at the Law School. Such violations will be adjudicated under procedures specified in the Rules Governing Student Professional Misconduct under Section V, and 2. Those that do not rise to the level of "Student Professional Misconduct".

Policy 6-2. Interviews Generally
  1. A student shall arrange an interview only with a potential employer with which the student has a good faith interest in employment.
  2. student shall make only true and not misleading statements during an interview.
  3. A student shall not comment on the qualifications of other students in the course of an interview.
  4. A student who is seeking reimbursement from a host employer for travel expenses shall account for those expenses accurately and honestly. If two or more employers are sharing responsibility for a student's expenses, the student shall take particular care to assure that his or her total reimbursements do not exceed his or her total expenses. 
  5. Violation of any rule in this Section 6-2 subjects the student to the rules for "Misconduct" under Section V.

Comment by The Committee

  1. A good faith interest is an actual interest in working for the particular employer the student arranges to see. To satisfy the good faith interest standard a student need not be convinced of his or her desire to work for a particular employer. For example, a student who is uncertain about where he or she wants to work or the type of employer he or she wants to work for does not violate the good faith standard when he or she interviews extensively. In addition, the number of interviews a student has does not reflect upon that student's good faith.
  2. This same standard applies with respect to interviews at an employers place of employment. More specifically, if the employer is paying for the trip as a "flyback" or "callback", it is not necessary that the particular employer must be the student's first choice. The good faith interest standard is satisfied if there is a reasonable possibility that the student would accept an offer of employment from that employer. A student accepting a "flyback" or "callback" with a principal purpose of visiting the host employer's city to interview with other employers in the host employer's city, visit a friend, see the country, or get a free trip home, does not have a good faith interest in working for the particular employer.
  3. Inadvertent errors are not subject to treatment under section 6-2.5, above. Correction of inadvertent errors as promptly as possible, with apologies as appropriate, is required. A student whose interview travel expenses are to be reimbursed by an interviewer shall inform that interviewer of other interviews, if any, scheduled in that geographic area during the same trip.
Policy 6-3. Interviews at the Law School ("On-Campus Interviews")
  1. If a student does not receive an interview with a particular employer of great interest to that student, he or she may contact that employer before or after the date of the interviewer's visit to the Law School to express his or her interest. However, students are asked not to attempt to arrange an interview by contacting an interviewer on the date of that interviewer's appearance at the Law School, except as authorized by the Career Center.
  2. A student shall make all reasonable efforts to attend interviews at the pre-arranged time and place. However, the three circumstances in which a student may miss an interview and that qualify as "Excused Absences" are: 1. Extreme illness and notification to the Career Center as soon as practical; 2. Acceptance of an offer of employment and notification of the Career Center prior to the time of the interview; 3. Notification of the Career Center in accordance with its "Advance Cancellation Policy", as amended from time to time. The failure to attend an interview under any other circumstances is an "Unexcused Absence". Students with Excused Absences 1 or 2, above, must submit a written apology to the interviewer (with a copy to the Career Center) within three days of the missed interview, explaining the reasons for the student's failure to appear. Oneor more Unexcused Absences may lead to the suspension of interview privileges, at the discretion of the Career Center. In addition, all Unexcused Absences will result in a $50.00 fine. Students with Unexcused Absences must submit a written apology to the interviewer (with a copy to the Career Center) within three days of the missed interview, explaining the reasons for the student's failure to appear.
  3.  A student should not miss class for an on-campus interview. As a condition of interviewing on campus, each student participating must include his or her entire class schedule as "unavailable times" when "bidding" for interviews and must keep the "unavailable times" schedule current as the student's class schedule changes. The Career Center is authorized to suspend bidding and interviewing privileges for students who do not properly enter their class schedule as "unavailable times" until such schedule is properly entered. Missing a class for an on-campus interview will be treated under Rule 3.8 in the same manner as missing class for any other reason.

Comment by The Committee

  1. This rule recognizes that students with significant interest in a particular employer may not receive an interview with that employer due to Duke's lottery system of assigning interviews and not allowing employers to pre-screen the students with whom they meet. In the case of great interest, the law school encourages students to initiate contact with such employers prior to the day of the interviews so that a possible meeting may be arranged outside of the regular schedule. Students are asked to do this judiciously and not for every employer for which they did not receive an interview.
  2. This rule reinforces that by accepting an interview on-campus, a student is making a professional commitment to attend that interview. The employer is investing significant resources in coming to Duke and has an expectation of meeting with students who have committed to meet with him or her. In addition, the failure of students to attend interviews may adversely impact the prospects of future Duke students interested in working with that employer. Repeatedly missing interviews without proper notice is demonstrative of a lack of professionalism and adversely reflects on the student's character and fitness to practice law. However, the Committee recognizes that there are three circumstances in which that commitment may understandably not be fulfilled, as detailed above.
  3. Missing class for any reason, including on-campus interviews, is strongly discouragedat Duke, and significant steps are taken by the law school to facilitate opportunities for students to interview without missing class, as well as to accommodate students who are not able to meet an employer of great interest due to a class conflict. Students are expected to take the minor steps of keeping their class schedule current and not accepting interviews should they receive one during a class. The Committee believes that missing class for on-campus interviews should be treated by Faculty and the Office of Student Affairs under Rule 3.8 in the same manner as missing class for any other reason.
Policy 6-4. Resumes
  1. A student shall not make false or misleading statements on his or her resume. Misleading or inaccurate statements must be corrected and may be treated as Student Professional Misconduct under Section V; false statements must be corrected and are treated as Student Professional Misconduct under Section V.
  2. Resumes shall conform to the following specifications regarding particular representations:
    1. Law School Grades - If a student wishes to present his or her grades on his or her resume, the student shall present his most current cumulative grade point average, rounded to the nearest two decimal places (e.g., 3.33). Law School grades need not be disclosed on the resume, however.
    2. Law School Class Rank - Law School class rank may not be estimated on the resume. Rank may also not be estimated during an interview, even in response to an employer's inquiry.
  3. A student may not, under any circumstances, examine the resume of another student without the latter's express permission. Violation of this provision is considered Student Professional Misconduct under Section V.

Comment by The Committee

  1. A false statement is any statement that is not literally true. Misstatements of grade average, honors, or activities are examples of false statements. Misleading or inaccurate statements are statements that are reasonably likely to create a false impression in the mind of the interviewer. For example, it would be misleading for a participant in the law journal's writing competition to represent that he or she was a "law journal participant." Though the student is participating in a law journal activity, such a statement is reasonably likely to create a false impression that the student has already been selected for law journal membership. Another example of “misleading” would be to include on a resume participation in a school organization without dates when the student is a third year and has not been in the organization since first year.
  2. a. The provision regarding presentation of Law School grades does not proscribe presentation of grade averages for a particular year or in a particular area of study. The student shall, however, clearly designate the basis for any special grade averages presented. b. The provision prohibiting estimations of class rank on a student's resume is in accordance with Duke's policy not to publish class rank.
Policy 6-5. Career Center Requests for Information from Students

As a member of the Duke Law School community, student are required to promptly and completely respond to requests made by the Career Center for student information. Such information includes personal contact information, and the name and location of summer and post graduate employers. It also includes requests concerning whether and where a student has received an offer(s) of employment, whether the student continues to be looking, and related inquiries, as well descriptive information about prior work experience.

Comment by The Committee

For the Law School to fulfill its commitments to its students and external organizations, the Career Center has been charged by the Faculty to maintain certain limited information about all students. Accordingly, the Career Center submits to students requests for information regarding employment choices, students’ current needs and other topics. The information is used for several purposes, and it is essential to optimize the opportunities available to all current and future Duke Law students. The purposes for which this information is used include to:

  1. Assess current student needs for support in their efforts in pursuit of employment;
  2. Provide information to allow subsequent Duke Law students to analyze their potential opportunities;
  3. Provide prospective students information about the choices available to Duke Law students;
    1. Allow the Admissions & Financial Aid Committee to establish more accurate financial projections for the LRAP;
    2. Enable the Law School to comply with its commitments to provide employment information for all of its graduates.
  4. The Law School will protect the confidentiality of individual responses to such inquiries in accordance with Federal Law.
Policy 6-6. Other Violations of Ethics

The absence of a specific prohibition in the foregoing rules shall not be inferred to permit behavior which is otherwise unethical or damaging to the career or professional development opportunities available to current or future students. Nothing in these rules is intended to prevent the Director of the Career Center from discharging the duties of his or her office by confronting individual instances of misconduct which violate the spirit and intent of these rules. Ethical violations may be considered Misconduct under Section V of the Rules and Policies.

Comment by The Committee

An effort has been made in these rules to deal with ethical questions that are relatively common, in a manner that provides substantial specificity in defining the offense, the sanctions, and the relevant procedures. That specificity should not be taken as permission to engage in any behavior not explicitly prohibited.

Policy 6-7. Rulings
  1. Subject to revocation by the The Committee, the Career Center may issue written rulings on interpretive questions arising under these rules.
  2. Violations of rules in Section VI that are not identified as “Misconduct” are subject to the penalties as articulated. Should the student not be satisfied with the decision of the Career Center, he or she may appeal to the Faculty Chair of the Committee. Repeated violations of these rules may lead to these infractions being considered "Misconduct."

Comment by The Committee

The goal of these provisionsis to reach an appropriate balance between fairness to the student who may have violated these Rules and protection of the employment and professional development process.