On the subject of women, just being a woman doesn't really buy any easier route these days. We see plenty of women in our screens and call backs. It is more so the diversity factor that might be considered, assuming all else is equal. I assure you that there are no "looser" standards for women. If you see them getting call backs and offers, it is because they are highly qualified and -- as if often the case -- they tend to shine more in the callbacks personality-wise. Many women have an easier time connecting with people they are just meeting than men. Again, these are my observations. When I was on campus a couple of months back, the women were terrific. The men, more mixed.
I know I promised to discuss women's issues in a later post, and I will do so. The law firm world is a difficult place for working women - especially working moms. It has gotten better over the years. If you are considering a family life down the road, you do need to think about selecting firms/companies/other organizations that appear to promote women -including those with families (ie. not just those who give up lives to devote selves to firm). You do not want to be in a place where the lawyer moms are ghettoed to senior associate or of counsel forever. Lack of power = lack of respect. And, try to beware of that particularly evil brand of woman lawyer -- women who do not support other women. My lawyer/mom friend says "there is a special place in hell for women who denigrate other women (without any basis for doing so). "
Just HP's two cents for the day.