Is a legal industry job necessary before applying to school?

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pdrez
Posts: 36
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2009 3:45 pm

Is a legal industry job necessary before applying to school?

Postby pdrez » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:42 pm

Hi, I am preparing to take the LSAT in June to be admitted to a school for Fall 2011. My question regards how law schools look at an applicant's job history, and what they factor in to make a decision on an applicant.

I am 27 years old and my experiences after college (at Univ of Texas) have been varied. I worked as a media planner at a big firm here in New York, and after that for the past two years I have been a commercial Voiceover actor. Now I am focused on the law degree I chose to not pursue straight out of college. I have practically no law firm experience, and to make a long story short, I just want to know:

    Is it necessary to try and get a job at a law firm in order to get into good schools?
    Do they even look at that as a requirement? What kinds of jobs do law schools like to see on an applicant's resume?
    Finally, is the fact that my pursuits post-college have been so varied a disadvantage?


Let me know, because I am currently looking into getting a legal assistant-type job to beef up my resume before applying for 2011.

Thank you.

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kalvano
Posts: 11721
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:24 am

Re: Is a legal industry job necessary before applying to school?

Postby kalvano » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:44 pm

No, not at all.

runningwithscissors
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 4:52 pm

Re: Is a legal industry job necessary before applying to school?

Postby runningwithscissors » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:48 pm

1. No.
2. Jobs are a soft factor like many other things. Focus on doing well on the LSAT at this point. If anything, your employment may provide a nice topic for your personal statement. A few schools (ie Northwestern) really want work experience though.
3. No.

Edit: I think TLS is changing around words for April Fools day...haha

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traehekat
Posts: 3195
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:00 pm

Re: Is a legal industry job necessary before applying to school?

Postby traehekat » Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:45 pm

The short answer to your question is a resounding no.

If you aren't already aware, law school admissions is pretty much all a numbers game. Most people will tell you your GPA and LSAT score are the two biggest factors, but the truth is they are basically the ONLY factors, outside of URM status. The resume, personal statement, and letters of recommendation are just there to make sure you are capable of writing and at least one or two other people can vouch that you are not a serial killer. Rarely is anyone ever denied or accepted based on their soft factors. So, having worked in some legal industry job prior to law school probably will not help nor hurt your application - it just looks nice on your resume. Devote as much time as you can to the LSAT, as that is the single most important determinant in law school admissions.




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