As discussed in our previous blog, Law School Myths Debunked: 10 Myths About Applying to Law School, welcome to our 10-part blog series where we debunk the most popular myths about applying to Law School. In this blog we cover myth #1, going straight from undergrad to law school is easiest.
In recent years, an increasing number of law schools are emphasising admitting students with relevant work experience over those applying straight from university. Especially in a time when more applicants have similarly positioned academics, work experience is the difference in getting you an offer or rejection letter. So how do you level the playing field with the more experienced competition?
“Leverage whatever experiences you do have. The UK attracts top students from around the world so make yourself standout.”
Vivian Mak, CLFA Student Advisor
Jobs during university, such as summer internships or teaching assistant positions, or even leadership positions in academic organisations such as prelaw societies, all help communicate your ability to take what you’ve learned in the classroom and practically apply it just like you would in real world work experience.
Showcasing such experiences in your personal statement makes your application stand out and offers insight into the experience and the skills you developed through it. Additionally, doing so provides specific examples of meaningful events you were a part of, displaying attentiveness, maturity and leadership, all skills schools value and one of the reasons they encourage applicants with work experience to apply.
Considering picking up some work experience is especially helpful when it relates directly to your longer-term career goals. For example, if in your personal statement you say you're interested in immigration law, having demonstrable experience at an immigrant service center is so much more impactful in showing your commitment as opposed to just saying what you want to do.
Finally, remember our law schools still consider applications even without work experience, so don't be shy about applying. But if you’ve got the urge to get out into the world and get some experience, go for it! The myth that going straight from undergrad to law school is easiest just isn’t true, there is never a ‘best time’ to start law school, so just do what is best for you. Come back next time, or subscribe to our blog, when we tackle myth #2, Law school is so expensive, I’ll never afford it!