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Any advice on converting an Army resume to a legal resume?

Veteran

Rod Jackson Orlando, FL

Leaders,

Good Day!

I wanted to know if anyone could offer advice/ assistance with my resume building process. I retired from the Army after nearly 24 years. I retired as a Medical Service Corps officer. I do, however, have a couple resumes (one that I built while ACAPing and one that I paid a professional service for).

The issue is, I am one semester from completing my JD (law degree). My career services liaison at the school averred that my resume is 100% Army. I need to convert it to the legal field. The question is -- well how do I do that? The only job (career) I have ever had was in the Army. I mean, I did intern for about 6 months at a law firm. But how do I make my career Army resume -legal- when I have never been in the legal field?

Any advice or assistance is much appreciated.

V/R

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamie-“rod”-jackson-mpa-a0317014b/

10 June 2022 18 replies Resumes & Cover Letters

Answers

Veteran

Torria Harris Tracy, CA

Let the professionals that cater to military veterans do it for you. I recommend Hire Heroes USA as a start. You will be provided with a Transition Specialist that will inform you of all their resources. Hire Heroes USA will also review your military credentials and convert it into a resume that complies with the civilian sector. You can google Hire Heroes USA or go to the link below to register.

https://mytrak.hireheroesusa.org/s/login/SelfRegister

Advisor

Louis Schwarz Somerville, NJ

Hi Rod. You have a very valuable resource, your medical experience, and your legal training. Opportunities in the medical insurance claims area always available. Many lawyers are employed by insurance companies to support their medical claims operations. Hospitals corporations also have lawyers on staff to support their issues with claims against the hospital and their medical staff.
You have mature experience which is valuable in any emotional medical claim. I would focus your resume on your medical experience of leadership, decisions, responsibility and completion of tasks.
Good Luck.

Advisor

Anne Crawford Swansea, MA

Hi Rod, the secret to converting your resume from your military experience to your soon to be law degree is breaking down all your tasks in the military. Start with the tasks you enjoyed and describe times that you struggled and how you achieved success. Then answer this question. Why did I want to become a lawyer, what is my mission statement as a lawyer and what transferable skills did I learn in the military, that I have applied to earning my law degree? I would be more than happy to explain this to you and help you on your way. Thank you for your service. All the best, Anne
www.linkedin.com/in/ancrawford

Advisor

Gary Rossi Napa, CA

Rod - I have done many resumes for all fields and especially for the legal field. What I can also offer is my broad and deep LinkedIn network of business professionals for networking purposes especially informational interviews. Here is my profile to reach out and connect - https://www.linkedin.com/in/garyrossibaldrigecoach/ Wish you the very best. Gary

Veteran

Peter Kozelka Oak Park, IL

Hey Rod,
Just went through this myself. Feel free to reach out. Career centers at law school don’t always have the best advice for former officers.
It all depends on what type of law you want to do, but if you are interested in tax law, definitely send me a message.

Veteran

DAVE BICKEL Ashland, VA

Hi Rod, adding to June Webb's suggestion of resume.com, also check out https://app.flowcv.com/
Cheers, Dave (Ashland VA)

Advisor

Timothy Bowman Laguna Niguel, CA

Hi Rod,
As noted by the other respondents, please do not pay for resume services, as there are too many resources out there. Stress your organizational, leadership, communication, and administrative skills, and focus on how you achieved results. Also, check into federal employment. Most federal agencies hire experienced attorneys, but with your medical background, the Department of Health and Human Services or Department of Veteran's Affairs might have legal positions that fit your skills.
Good luck!
Tim

Advisor

Laurence Schnabel Templeton, CA

What will set you apart from the other law students competing for the same job is what you did in the military. Describe your communications skills, duties in leading others and your responsibilities. I practiced law for 40 years, first as a deputy District Atty and then as a partner in 3 law firms. I reviewed a lot of resumes and, frankly, most looked pretty much alike. Your law school's ranking and where you stood in your class are 2 factors I would look at. But as I was a defense trial lawyer in trial law firms. I looked for other things, e.g., how well can this applicant communicate with other people? How likely is it he or she can craft practical solutions to problems? I found that applicants that had dealt with people of all ilks- e.g., a cab drivers, bartenders, waiters - seemed to deal better with a wide range of people. I was a summer ('Seasonal") Beach lifeguard for the city of Santa Monica , and learned to deal with all sorts of people. In voir diring a jury panel you need these skills. You need to figure out if you wish to do trial work or transactional work as an atty. if trial work, consider applying to the U.S. Atty office, County District Atty office, City Atty office or County Public Defender.My guess is your extensive real life prior work ( versus just schooling) will be appreciated in a decision whether to hire you.

Advisor

Lex Levin Northborough, MA

Rod,

Happy to help you. I'm a full-time professional resume writer and a former Fed specializing for the last 13 years in working with Active Duty and Reserve Service Members, Veterans, and Military Spouses transitioning to Federal or private sector work. I can guide you through the process of creating a Federal or private sector resume, learning to use USAJOBS, figuring out which Federal job series and grades are the best fit for you, and translating your military experience into civilian language. I have specific experience writing resumes for Service members transitioning to the legal field.

You can best get in touch with me through my website contact page: https://lexlevinllc.com/contact/.

Just answer a few questions about your goals, upload your current resume(s), and I'll review and advise.

Best regards,

Lex

P.S. Some people giving you bad advice on here - there's nothing wrong with paying a professional resume writer if they know what they're doing and offer a track record of success. I could spend days and weeks learning how to maintain my car myself but I pay a professional to do it because it's worth my time and money to do that - same applies here. Check out my website and LinkedIn page.

Advisor

FRANCIS TEPEDINO, ESQ. San Diego, CA

Some great advice from the other members of ACP.

My two cents: as a Lawyer:
Make sure you include any memberships in the various legal organizations/groups, and any particular studies/courses during your JD program.

I am surprised that your Law School placement Office hasn't help. Give them a call.
Here at Univ. of San Diego School of Law we have a very active/aggressive student placement program.

Advisor

FRANCIS TEPEDINO, ESQ. San Diego, CA

Some great advice from the other members of ACP.

My two cents: as a Lawyer:
Make sure you include any memberships in the various legal organizations/groups, and any particular studies/courses during your JD program.

I am surprised that your Law School placement Office hasn't help. Give them a call.
Here at Univ. of San Diego School of Law we have a very active/aggressive student placement program.

Advisor

June Webb Washington, DC

Hi Rod,

Look into Resume.com. There is verbiage and prompted phases for you to select from and also it is algorithm compliant which helps recruiters to find you.

June Webb
linkedin.com/junewebb

Advisor

Jose Roman Norfolk, VA

Rod,

1st never pay someone for a resume. 2nd Its terrible that your career services office at your university is failing you this badly! I can critique because I work at the Career Services Office at my university and we have a law school here.

IF you're available today I am hosting a "Demilitarizing Your Resume" webinar this afternoon at 2pm or email me at JRoman@regent.edu or JoseRRoman01@gmail.com and I can walk you through your resume changes. Reach out either way or find me on LinkedIn. I'll get you squared away.

IF you see this in time register here:
https://regent.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-YTlNVi0T-CWgnruZuM7KQ

Advisor

Jerry Welsh Middleville, MI

Rod,
There are plenty of services and people to assist you, please do not pay again to have your resume written. Most of the resume writers have no idea what the military is about and what transfers into a private sector resume. I would recommend Hire Heroes USA and also seek a mentor on ACP, ASAP. This program has some of the best success in bringing people to the private sector workforce. Also if you can afford it, look into another internship, one that has potential to lead into a full time paid position. The average tenure out there right now is less than three years, the fact you stayed in the Army for 23 years sings to your loyalty, find some organization that will look at that!! Thanks for your service and God Bless.

Advisor

Daphne Boston Seattle, WA

Hi Rod, thank you for your service. Even though you haven't had an official legal job yet, with 24 years of work experience in the military, I'm sure you have a plethora of transferrable skills and experience, so it's those that you'll want to bring out and highlight on your resume in each of your current and previous jobs. I can assist you with that.

I have decades of resume writing experience for several different industries, including the legal profession. Feel free to send me your resume.

Advisor

Richard Byrne Hillsborough, NJ

I've added instructions & links to information & videos under this section of my EE webpage that could be helpful:

http://eehot.com/ee.html#cool - (DOD Credentialing Opportunities On-Line)
- translating MOS to civilian keywords

http://eehot.com/ee.html#resumes
http://eehot.com/ee.html#networking

http://eehot.com/ee.html#jobs - Commercial job search links
http://eehot.com/ee.html#gjobs - Fed Gov Job search links.

Advisor

Patti Selan San Jose, CA

Hi, I can help. I have been a manager in the legal field for a long time and have reviewed many resumes. Would you like to send me your existing resume? And then we can review it together.

Veteran

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