Lauren Dropkin speaks with a student

Six ideas for a pre-law observe at Brandeis

Six ideas for a pre-law observe at Brandeis

Lauren Dropkin speaks with a pupil in her workplace

By Jack Yuanwei Cheng ’23March 24, 2023

Serious about making use of to legislation college? Whether or not you’re a first-year pupil or a latest graduate, making the choice to use requires cautious planning and preparation. We requested Lauren Dropkin, Brandeis’ pre-law advisor on the Hiatt Profession Middle, and Ethan Gerstman ’23, a pre-law pupil who will likely be attending Fordham Legislation College in New York Metropolis within the fall, for his or her recommendation.

Assess Your Readiness and Curiosity
Earlier than embarking on the legislation college journey, you will need to assess your readiness and curiosity within the discipline, as a result of going to legislation college requires a major time and monetary dedication, Dropkin says. One strategy to assess that is to conduct informational interviews with attorneys inside your community, whether or not they’re folks you understand, or Brandeis alumni. 
“Point out your curiosity in legislation to your mates; maybe they may have a relative you may converse with,” Dropkin says. The Hiatt Profession Middle additionally launched the platform “Rise Collectively,” a platform with profiles of Brandeis alumni who’re prepared to talk to present college students about their careers. It is a nice choice if chilly emailing is one thing you’re uncomfortable with.
Select the Proper Main
There isn’t a “proper main” for going to legislation college. “Think about what you’re captivated with as a result of every main will put together you for legislation college in a singular approach,” says Dropkin. For instance, if you’re a biology pupil, that have might show you how to to get right into a legislation profession related to the science business. Brandeis’ authorized research program, which is standard amongst many college students contemplating a profession in legislation, affords a minor and plenty of different alternatives for college kids. 
Gerstman is at the moment pursuing a level in each historical past and politics. “Historical past has at all times been an curiosity of mine, I most likely would have utilized to Historical past PhD applications if I didn’t wish to be a lawyer,” stated Gerstman.
Take part in Extracurricular Actions
“Legislation college doesn’t need you to be a mind in a jar,” says Dropkin. Taking part in extracurricular actions will help you develop necessary abilities equivalent to management, teamwork, and communication. Dropkin recommends that college students be a part of a number of golf equipment they’re all for and be concerned. For instance, Gerstman is a movie critic for the Justice, Brandeis’ student-run newspaper.
Put together for the LSAT or the GRE
An entrance examination such because the Legislation College Admission Take a look at (LSAT) or the Graduate Report Take a look at (GRE) is at the moment an important a part of the legislation college software course of. Most candidates take the LSAT. Getting ready for both check will help you obtain the next rating and improve your possibilities of admission to your dream college.
“You must make investments effort and time in making ready for the examination,” says Gerstman. He recommends planning out time properly whereas making ready for the LSAT. Register for a check and take into consideration how a lot time you’ve between now and your check. 
“You must commit a set variety of hours per week to review for the LSAT and follow that plan,” Gerstman says. “There are numerous on-line sources for LSAT prep. There isn’t a have to spend some huge cash on [expensive] prep books,” says Gerstman.

Get to Know Your Professors
Constructing relationships along with your professors will help you safe robust letters of advice, that are additionally an necessary a part of the legislation college software course of. “If you need a professor to jot down a letter for you, take a number of lessons with them, allow them to get to know you as an individual,” says Gerstman.
Analysis Legislation College That’s Proper For You
Researching legislation colleges will help you discover the most effective match in your pursuits, targets, and {qualifications}. Think about components equivalent to location, dimension, price, and the areas of legislation that the college makes a speciality of. “I at all times need college students to use to a spread of faculties. Primarily based in your check rating and GPA, apply to varsities that you’re prone to get in and colleges which might be extra of a attain. That approach, you should have choices on the finish of the applying course of,” says Dropkin.
Dropkin additionally recommends that college students contemplate whether or not advantage scholarship is necessary to them. Legal professionals in numerous sectors of the business receives a commission in a different way. For instance, a non-profit lawyer might receives a commission lower than a lawyer that works in a big agency. It is very important contemplate how a lot debt you’ll accumulate by the top of legislation college.
Pursuing legislation college is a significant dedication that requires cautious consideration and preparation. However it’s by no means too late to begin by connecting with the Hiatt Profession Middle. “College students can come to me at any level if they’re considering they wish to go to legislation college,” Dropkin says. “We are going to work out the most effective plan for you.” 

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