In 2017, there were almost 38,000 people enrolled in their first year of law school in the United States. Being a lawyer in this country is one of the most prestigious and intense jobs you could have.
You already know law school is in your future, but what do you need to do to be prepared for this type of education while in pre-law?
Keep reading to learn 9 tips that will help you on your way to greatness:
Most people know that this is a big part of getting into law school in the first place, but your grades are really important.
With any professional degree after an undergraduate degree, you have to have good grades because they will help the school judge whether or not you will succeed in their program.
A lot of people that apply to top law schools have really high GPAs, but they might also have a lot of extra experience and other things you might not. For this reason, making yourself stand out is important. Part of that is getting that high GPA.
Don’t forget to study for the LSAT as well. This test is important and it can dictate whether or not you are able to get accepted to a law school.
Do Not Put Off Looking at Law School:
The earlier you start to look at law schools, the better! You want to have all of the opportunities that you can and to do this, you need to know which schools you are interested in when the deadlines are, and what you need to do before you apply.
Having a list of schools you want to apply to will give you a higher chance of getting where you eventually will want to be.
If you are able to, it is always a good idea to look into financial aid and scholarship opportunities also.
Law school can be really expensive and you don’t want to go into debt if you won’t be able to pay it off after school ends.
Get Some Real-Life Experience Pre Law:
There really is nothing like getting experience in a law firm when you are planning to eventually become a lawyer.
Working or interning in any type of capacity in this type of field is going to pay off in the long run. It makes it easier for you to figure out if this is the right field for you, but it also gives you experience that will help you adjust later on.
You really can only determine if you want to work in the field by actually working in the field, so getting experience in a law office is a great first step to take.
You can do this after you finish your undergraduate degree if you want to work full-time and it will not make you less desirable as long as it benefits you.
Research and Learn A Variety of Things:
Some of the law schools out there will want their students to learn within a certain limit because it helps them showcase their main talents.
If you are able to, it is very wise to use all of the tools that your law school may offer you and think outside of the box. Push yourself to work harder than you would otherwise.
This will help you learn more in the long run and also mould you into a more valuable and masterful lawyer when you finish law school.
Until you have to choose a specific aspect of the law, consider learning what you can about all of them.
Remember It Won’t Always Be Easy:
Getting a law degree can be very challenging for some people, but everyone is going to struggle at some point. You may even question if the field is actually right for you.
When you eventually have your law degree, you must remember that you are going to have opportunities that no other type of degree can give you.
The law is always changing and growing in ways that other fields may not.
You can always serve others in this type of field and it is important to remember the main reason that you got into the field in the first place when you start to falter.
Put in the Effort to Succeed:
If you’re planning to do the bare minimum, you just aren’t going to do as well. Many law schools will give their students the basic knowledge and tools needed, but you will have to study and work hard in order to actually get where you want to go.
With this type of degree, no one will hand it to you. You must earn it! Learn what you can and try your best to be better than your colleagues if you want to stand out.
Build Relationships with Professors and Colleagues:
This is one of the most dreaded parts of the law school requirements for plenty of people because it can be difficult without proper planning ahead of time.
When it comes time to start applying to law schools, you will need to have these relationships in order to get recommendations. A lot of applications require at least a couple of letters of recommendation from people that can talk about you in an academic sense.
Start to talk with some of your professors during your undergraduate degree if you know that they will be able to judge your academic strengths fairly and accurately.
They can help you with recommendations later on, but they won’t do so without some effort on your part to reach out to them first!
Attend Local Events for Professional Development:
Many schools have free events that will help you with different professional skills, such as resume building or interviewing.
While in undergraduate school, consider looking into what your career centre may be able to offer to you.
Even if it is not directly related to law, you can gain some experience that will help you be a better professional when the time comes.
Work On Your Critical Thinking Skills:
Part of being a good lawyer is being able to see past the surface of any situation.
Critical thinking skills are important because they help you see things through the lens that a lawyer may actually see them. Although these skills will likely develop during your time in law school, it is a good idea to get a jump start on them before you even start.
Consider taking the time to really think about what you see, hear, and read. Evaluate and try to determine if there is another meaning or a message that can be taken from it.
In addition to this, don’t always assume you have the answer or that something doesn’t need to be questioned. Always stay curious!
Aspiring Law Students…
Remember that everyone has different experiences with pre-law, but in the end, what you personally take away from it is what is most important.
Along with these tips, remember to take care of yourself and learn what you can along the way.
If you want to read about becoming a lawyer, be sure to check out our website and learn a little bit more about the requirements. It never hurts to be prepared.