Mary Kate Sheridan

Mary Kate Sheridan

Mary Kate is Vault's Senior Law Editor. She holds a JD from Columbia Law School, an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School, and a BA in English from Mary Washington College. Mary Kate covers legal careers, the legal industry, and general career advice. Previously, Mary Kate worked as a litigator at a Vault 100 law firm.

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All Posts by Mary Kate Sheridan

Vault's 2019 Top Law Firms by Practice Area

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 24, 2018

We asked associates to vote for the strongest firms in their specific practice area (aside from their own). These responses yielded Vault's Top Law Firms by Practice Area, which ranks the top firms across 26 practice areas. Read More >

Working from Home Boosts Productivity and Satisfaction, Survey Indicates

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 19, 2018

Working from home may make you more satisfied and boost your productivity according to a new study by Porch. The survey included responses from 1,001 people who either work in an office, work remotely, or split their time between an office and home ("split workers") and explored such topics as job satisfaction, work-location benefits, productivity and distractions, and downsides of remote working.Interestingly, employees who work from home are more satisfied with their jobs overall than... Read More >

New Study Reveals Insights into Behavioral Health and Substance Abuse Among Attorneys in Private Practice

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 17, 2018

Lurking in the shadows of the offices of many successful law firms is a weight dragging down many of their attorneys: behavioral health issues and substance abuse disorders. And one of the biggest problems is that these issues should not be in the shadows. The American Bar Association recently launched a campaign through the ABA Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession to dedicate more awareness and resources to these concerns. Specificall Read More >

Fun Facts about the Top 100 Law Firms

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 12, 2018

Selecting a law firm is a big decision because-let's face it-you're basically going to be living inside those four walls, cozying up to the billable hour. Researching key aspects of the firm-including the assigning system, training and mentoring, partner relations, transparency, etc.-is important for ensuring the best fit. After a while, though, the statistics and marketing materials may start to blur. When that happens, I recommend digging into each firm's personality. That may mean... Read More >

Maximizing Your 3L Year of Law School

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 07, 2018

Law school classes are officially under way. And for 3Ls, the countdown to the end of their law school careers has begun. Oftentimes, 3L year is best described with one word: coast. Many want a more laid-back schedule after two grueling years of Socratic Method. And while two-year law school programs have yet to become a reality, many have floated the idea of limiting law school to just 1L and 2L years.But as of now, law students are locked into three years Read More >

The Truth About Doc Review

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  September 04, 2018

Nothing seems to invite as much disdain from junior associates as document review. We see the sentiment peppered throughout responses to Vault's annual Law Firm Associate Survey, with some associates praising their firms for sparing juniors from such "menial" work; some lamenting that while summers aren't saddled with doc review, first years are clicking away; and still others downplaying it  (e.g., "As a first year, I do document review, BUT . . ."). I remember being worried before... Read More >

Navigating Unlimited Vacation-Day Policies

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  August 28, 2018

Imagine digging your toes in the sand for as many days as you want each year. Sounds like a dream, but for some, endless beach days-or ski days-are a reality through their companies' unlimited vacation-day policies. When limitless vacation is ingrained in the culture and employees are trusted to balance their work and vacation time, this perk can provide amazing flexibility and autonomy. But boundless vacation can also lend itself to uncertainty abou Read More >

Fourteen Unique Law Firm Interview Questions

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  August 27, 2018

Preparing for a law firm call-back or lateral interview can be nerve-racking, especially if you're the type who tries to guess the questions a firm will ask. Of course, it is impossible to know the exact roadmap for your interview, but you certainly can prepare for some typical legal interview questions, such as Why this firm? Why are you interested in this specific practice area? Why did you go to law school? What is your favorite class in law school? What are your connections to... Read More >

Nailing the Law Firm Call-Back Interview

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  August 21, 2018

With OCI in the rear-view mirror for many law students, the focus is now on call-back interviews. Call backs are exciting because they provide an opportunity to see the firm in action and meet a variety of attorneys. But with multiple interviews plus a potential lunch meeting, the call-back process can also be overwhelming. Below are some tips for handling a call-back interview with ease.Get There On TimeIt goes without saying that you should arrive at an interview on time. But I'm going to... Read More >

Hiring Insights from Attorneys at the Most Selective Law Firms

by Mary Kate Sheridan  |  August 17, 2018

Hiring at law firms with more than 500 attorneys has reached its highest point since 2008, according to NALP's newly released Employment for the Class of 2017 - Selected Findings. These findings reveal that BigLaw firms with 500-plus lawyers "hired more law school graduates than at any time since the recession." Clearly, the BigLaw dream is still alive. But snagging a spot at a top law firm or at any legal job is certainly not easy. The findings also indicated that entry-level jobs at 50 Read More >

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