Deciding whether or not to go to law school

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skylervm
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:31 pm

Deciding whether or not to go to law school

Postby skylervm » Tue Mar 01, 2011 11:50 am

I'm a graphic designer considering changing careers and applying to law school. I like the knowledge and skills it affords you to be able to work to change laws and policies, but I'm concerned that I may not like the way I would be spending my days as a lawyer and I maybe have an inaccurate picture of what lawyers actually do.

A large part of my concern is ignorance about what law school is like, what life as a lawyer is like, etc. So please bear with me.

I'm particularly interested in Social Justice, Comparative Studies and International Law. I'd really like to be able to work to change our existing drug laws, defend people who have been victims of these laws and help create a new drug policy. I'm also interested in doing similar work in the areas of human rights abuses and immigration. I also have a desire to teach and possibly write at some point, so academia isn't out of the question as an eventual career path.

My questions are:

What does a career like what I've defined above look like? Is that even possible?
What concentration would you recommend if I was primarily interested in drug policy?
What questions should I be asking myself in trying to decide whether or not to pursue law school / becoming a lawyer?

I recognize I tend to get bored with things easily and shift from one interest to the next. This may be one of those times and want to be cautious that I'm not just getting distracted and changing careers on a whim. A large part of my reservation is having pretty bad ADD, which has always made school (particularly reading lots of boring information and doing tedious work) pretty difficult. I maintained a 3.75 in college and think I can do this if I'm interested in it, I just want to make sure I know what I'm getting myself into.

Thanks for your time.

Bumi
Posts: 947
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:57 pm

Re: Deciding whether or not to go to law school

Postby Bumi » Tue Mar 01, 2011 12:11 pm

skylervm wrote:I'd really like to be able to work to change our existing drug laws, defend people who have been victims of these laws and help create a new drug policy. I'm also interested in doing similar work in the areas of human rights abuses and immigration. I also have a desire to teach and possibly write at some point, so academia isn't out of the question as an eventual career path.

Sounds like a great career if you can get into Yale.

skylervm wrote:I maintained a 3.75 in college

Nevermind.

User avatar
Wholigan
Posts: 763
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2011 4:51 pm

Re: Deciding whether or not to go to law school

Postby Wholigan » Tue Mar 01, 2011 12:38 pm

What exactly do you want to do about drug policy? Become an elected official? Work for the DEA? Go into court and slam your JD down on the table and demand they rule it's unconstitutional that pot is illegal? "International law" is kind of a buzzword around here. What will probably happen is that someone will come along after me and quote me like this:

Wholigan wrote: "International law" is kind of a buzzword around here does not exist.


FTFY

In all seriousness, you probably need to narrow down what you want to do a little more. With your GPA, it isn't impossible to get into a T6, which is what is necessary to have any chance at academia. You will need to study for the LSAT and get a 170 or higher. Even so, it is incredibly difficult to break into academia if you didn't go to Yale, as the last guy pointed out. Going to any other school with the sole intention of teaching is like putting all of your eggs in the basket of becoming ambassador to France. Might happen, but you'd better have a backup plan.




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