What is it like being a Lawyer?
I'm a senior in high school and I think being a Lawyer would be cool. I want to help people but I just don't know what all is involved with being a lawyer and if I'm able to do it.
Is there any way I can find out what it's like and if it would be a possible career choice for me in the future?
First and foremost, it is not a question of whether or not you could become a lawyer, anyone can become a lawyer so long as they are willing to make the sacrifice of time, money and hard work. I think you already know that you need to discover whether or not law school and the legal career path is right for you, and I applaud you for taking that initiative.
I have been practicing law for many years now, and I can say many lawyers love being a lawyer, many lawyers despise being a lawyer, and some take a totally neutral position regarding their careers.
The problem is that there are so many different types of lawyers that you may be the type of person who really likes one type of law but would hate doing another type of law, and sometimes after lawyers get their first job it is tough to move into a different type of law.
The two things that all lawyers have in common are reading and writing… Are these activities that you enjoy?
Regardless, you have plenty of time… If I were you I would do the following:
When you get to college, take as many law related classes as you can. Though they will not give you any real insight into what it is like to actually be a lawyer, you should be able to judge whether or not you like the subject matter.
Do you know any lawyers? Could you possibly volunteer to work at their offices during your summer breaks? If so (and you can afford volunteering) I would definitely suggest doing this.
Even if you decide not to go to law school, having this type of experience on your resume cannot hurt.
Also, if you Google “(your state) bar association” and go to the contacts section, there should a person with the responsibilities of mentoring law students… contact that person and tell them you are a senior and are interested in law and wondering if you could speak to someone about law school and law practice. I have no doubt that this person would be glad to help you (that is their job).
You may even want to contact the law school nearest to you and explain your situation and ask if there is someone you could talk to about becoming a lawyer.
Also, you could contact your high school guidance counselor and ask him/her to put you in contact with a lawyer who can talk to you. Don’t be intimidated in talking to any of these people… it is their job to help people like you.
What is actually required to become a lawyer? You will need to:
1) Graduate from a 4 year college/university
2) Graduate from an ABA accredited law school (stay away from any online law schools or non-accredited law schools)
3) Pass the bar exam in the state you intend to practice.
4) Find a job.
None of the above are easy, but if you put forth some effort to find out if the law really is your PASSION you will find your place.
If you read through our articles on this website it should give you a good idea regarding how to become a lawyer.
Feel free to let us know if you want to discuss any of the above in further detail! Also, it may be helpful if you could identify a specific type of law that you are interested in, then we could provide you with more specific information.