Amitabha Bose (J.D. 2004)
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Governmental Affairs at the U.S. Department of Transportation
Mr. Bose currently works as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Governmental Affairs at the U.S. Department of Transportation in Washington, D.C. He is not one of the agency’s lawyers. Rather, he acts as a liaison between the Department of Transportation and the House of Representatives, handling requests for meetings and requests from Congress members about issues in their districts. Mr. Bose took this job because he saw it as a good opportunity to serve in President Obama’s administration. He has a background in land use and municipal law and this job, doing transportation policy, allows him to put his professional background to good use. Mr. Bose’s tenure as Deputy Assistant Secretary is directly related to President Obama’s term in office, so when the President leaves office, Mr. Bose will, as well.
Before Mr. Bose began working with the Department of Transportation, he worked for New Jersey Transit and the New Jersey Department of Transportation doing policy work. He has also worked for Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey and Smith, Gambrell, & Russell in Atlanta, Georgia.
Some advice Mr. Bose gives to law students and recent graduates looking for internships and jobs is to be patient. Specifically speaking of seeking government work in Washington, D.C., Mr. Bose says the process is time-consuming, due in large part to the different time constraints for government offices versus the private sector. Often employees in the private sector have specific deadlines that government recruiters do not have. The government offices, therefore, can take more time in the hiring process than many private sector employees. He advises job- and internship-seeking students to follow up with prospective employers for information about when you will get a response to your application.
Concerning interviewing, Mr. Bose recommends going beyond your resume by giving concrete examples of your experience. For instance, if you were on a journal, you might speak specifically about editing or writing an article, rather than just saying you were on Law Review. Informational interviews are important, as well, because you can hear about new or upcoming job opportunities there.
Mr. Bose discusses the emphasis in law school on using your degree in a firm or other entity as a lawyer, but stresses that there are opportunities to use your law degree for purposes other than working in a law firm. You just have to search for these openings.
Some classes he is glad he took while he was in law school are Administrative Law, the Land Use Clinic, and a Constitutional Law Seminar. Mr. Bose counsels students to take a seminar in a field that interests you before you graduate. Some classes that Mr. Bose wishes he had taken are Conflict of Laws and Entertainment Law (just for fun).