First, we have what I call the Pork clerkship (and you need to get your minds out of the gutter right now you sickos, this is a family show here at Incidental Justice). This is the country club of summer clerkships. I use the term "pork" because you get paid ridiculous amounts of money for the work you do, and you get fat from all the business lunches you go to. It's quite the deal. You go to happy hours. You network. You kiss ass. You do lots of legal research, but you don't get to do much practical legal work because none of the attorneys there would actually trust you to do anything of substance. If you manage not to piss anyone off during your Pork clerkship, you'll get a job offer at the end of the summer. Congratulations, kid who accepted your permanent job offer! You will earn ungodly amounts of money, work 80-hour weeks, and hate your life for the first five years out of law school!
Then, we have the Beans clerkship. Clerks at Beans clerkships do pretty much everything that an actual lawyer would do. They also do everything that a legal assistant would do. And then they have to do a bunch of other random slave work, too. This was the type of clerkship I had last summer, and I absolutely loved it. Beans clerkships are great gigs because you get to learn the entire legal process from start to finish, and you get darn good at the whole lawyering thing. It's called a Beans clerkship because you get paid...... wait for it...... beans. What you lack in salary is made up for in experience.
Anyway, that's what a law student spends her summer doing. I guarantee that every law student who's done a clerkship will attest to the veracity of this post. The small minority that might disagree are the Pork clerks who downed a few too many cocktails at happy hour tonight. But that's just because the alcohol has impaired their judgment. They'll sober up soon enough.