Graduating from law school takes three years.
Application processL (skip if it's not relevant to you)
Based on my experiences, to get into law school, the most important pieces of your application are: (1) undergraduate grades, (2) LSAT score and (3) have a unique background / life experiences.
However, you don't need to excel and perfectly fulfill all of these factors combined to be considered a great candidate. A low undergraduate score and lack of experience can be made up by a stellar LSAT score, while a lower LSAT score could perhaps be made up by a fascinating life story. More specifically, while you cannot go back and change your undergraduate grades, you have complete control of your LSAT score. Take several months to study and do as many practice tests as you can. There are a lot of resources online—including free practice tests—that will get you ready. It is a completely learnable test, but requires mental fortitude and perseverance.
But overall, I recommend you take at least a year off between undergrad and law school to travel, work, and explore the world. It will make your application stronger and teach you things about the world you may have not known before. Also, you can use these experiences to think about what kind of lawyer you'd like to be.
Once you're in!
Law professors in U.S. law schools use the socratic method when lecturing. What this means is that they prefer the lectures to be more interactive with participation from all students. At some point they could cold-call on you (i.e. randomly call our your name to answer a question). But fear not! While this sounds scary, it actually teaches you a lot on how to speak in front of crowds and become more confident in general. Reading and writing are two important qualities that one should have if in law school. While you're still in undergrad, really try to hone in and enhance your reading and writing skills if that's an area you think you'd need help with. Also, don't be afraid to ask for help and create professional relationships with professors. In the end, your professors truly want you to succeed!
This professional recommends the following next steps:
- Take courses in undergrad to enhance your reading and writing skills
- Practice volunteering in your current classes to answer questions in front of your peers
- Start saving money (if possible). I understand this is difficult, but whenever possible try to set some money off to the side for law school tuition.
- Regularly attend professors office hours to allow them to get to know you better. This will ensure you have a great reference for law school applications!