Kate Acosta ('16)

Kate Acosta

Degree: JD ’16
Type of workplace:
  • Law firm
Practice area(s):
  • Labor and Employment Law
Location: Portland, OR

What are you up to these days?

I’ve just transitioned jobs and I am currently an associate at Schwabe and I am an employment litigator. You can read my firm bio here

How did you get your job?

I graduated at a time when our economy was still recovering from the recession. It is hard to make the jump from law school to practice, and this is why it is so important to make every effort to network with people, especially if you practice in a niche area. In my experience, especially in my current role, networking has helped me get the jobs. For example, my two podmates from law school knew I was looking and told me about this opportunity. Job postings can get you a job, but in my experience, those have been the exception to the rule. It’s all about networking, especially here in Portland. 

What advice would you give to a graduating student who's looking for a job?

The job market is incredible right now. There are a lot of opportunities. If you cast a wide net, it’ll make your job search easier. My advice is not to focus only on the exact job you want, but to focus on a job that will give you good experience and lead to your ideal position. Then it’s a lot easier to move once you have that experience.

As I’ve mentioned above, networking is key. I keep in touch with my classmates and those connections have helped me tremendously, especially since our legal community is small. You will inevitably run into the same people. 

Take the initiative and reach out. I have found that people in Portland are very generous with their time because many of us remember to process of finding a job. Good luck!