Law is one of the toughest programs you could join, but it will get you one step closer to your dreams. That’s why there is a range of things you should keep in mind, ensuring that you find a school worth your time. We’ll be discussing these points below. So, read ahead.
Where Do You Want to Go?
When looking for a law school, the location is important. If you want to get the most out of your degree, join a JD that’s in the city. Not only would the city expose you to most universities, but it would also help with opportunities. After all, there are more firms and internships for you to join.
As we’ve established, law programs are not easy. They’re one of the most difficult programs you could join. That’s why you might want to be close to home. Having family and friends around you would make the stress more bearable. Too many students have dropped out because of this.
What’s more, going to law school in the city would let you meet a lot of people. You’ll be surrounded by diversity, which is important, whether you’re going to law school or not.
Is It Ranked Well?
Every law student’s dream is to get into a program that’s ranked well. This results in them getting a degree from an acclaimed university. As a lawyer, this will boost your career considerably. That being said, the higher a university ranks, the more difficult it would be for you to get in. You should look at your options ahead of time and prep.
Will You Pass the Bar?
Getting through your JD is great, but it’s not the final step in the process. You’ll have to sit for your bar after you’re done with your degree. When doing research, you should compare the percentage of students that have passed the bar exam from each school you’re interested in. If not, you might join a program that seems good but won’t give you enough preparation to become a lawyer.
You should also note the extent of their bar reviews. Whether you’ll be undergoing the UBE exam or not, you need classes at least once a week. You’ll also need time to do additional prep. The bar exam is hard, which is why students get help outside university. This is why bar reviews only once or twice a week are great.
How’s the Student Culture?
Law degrees require a lot of studying and research, so they’re extremely high pressure. If you join a JD that is competitive, the already high-pressure degree might become unbearable.
Then again, this depends on the type of person you are. Some people do well in stressful environments. If this is you, a competitive law program is where you should be.
If you can’t figure out the atmosphere of the law school you’re interested in, know that law schools in the city, especially large ones, are known to be the most competitive.
Smaller degrees have the most relaxed student environments. They’re also known to have the best student-teacher relationships. Being close to lecturers would help you get additional assistance, possibly saving your grades.
What Will You Be Studying?
Each law school would have their curriculum on their site. Be sure to give them a good look. Hopefully, the university you’re interested in offers a curriculum with a range of topics. After all, the bar is not a specialized exam, so this is needed. The more topics you study, the more you’ll know about what kind of law career you want as well.
Having a well-rounded curriculum would also make your studies easier. You’ll be learning about a range of topics, always keeping you on your toes.
Most JDs in an area have similar curriculums, so compare and contrast law programs throughout the country.
Who’ll Be Teaching You?
Making note of the school’s faculty is essential. No matter how interesting their curriculum is, you won’t do much learning if their lecturers aren’t good.
Similar to this, they’ll likely have their lecturers on their site. If they happen to not have this information online, don’t hesitate to do some digging. Forums like Reddit exist, so ask past students how their lecturers were.
Are There Job Opportunities?
As mentioned, going to law school in the city would let you get the most opportunity. Internships are a must, so the JD you’re interested in should be partnered with multiple firms. Hopefully, the firms would be large names as they’d look better on your CV.
Depending on the program you choose, the extent of your field experience may differ. Make note of whether it’ll be a couple of months being an intern or your final year.
How Much is It?
By no means are law programs affordable. From the many degrees you could get, law degrees are one of the most expensive. That’s why you need to join a university whose fees are within your budget. This is especially true as the programs are not easy. So if you spent a lot but dropped out eventually, this would be a waste of money.
Thankfully, many law schools offer scholarships. Research their requirements and try to get one. Law degrees are known to be generous with their scholarships.
Look into the financial aid they offer, as well. Each school would approach this differently, so look around. Although larger schools are more expensive, they offer more scholarships.
Without a doubt, going to law school is a major move. That’s why there are several things to keep in mind before you choose a program. The most important is whether the program is ranked well. You don’t want to get into a school that doesn’t have a good name for themselves as otherwise, your degree may be worthless. The law school should also have a great culture as this will make the stress of law school more bearable.
Overall, these points should help you choose a good law school. However, you don’t have to go to law school to become a lawyer. You can sit for the bar without doing a law degree.