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Looking for advice about CareerVillage professionals landed their law careers

I am looking for advice on how lawyers on CareerVillage landed their careers. I would love to know what majors, colleges, law schools, and internships that professionals have landed that lead them to the careers they have today. Any other piece of general advice are welcome! #law #corporate-law #lawyers

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Jonathan’s Answer

I landed my law career because I goofed around my first two years of college took a lot of hard courses and decided that being a doctor wasn't for me. During the summers, I interned at a small law firm. When I was making my career decision in my junior year, medicine was off the table because of grades and lack of interest. I wanted to go into finance because economics was my passion, but didn't think I would get suitable that I wanted in New York, so I went to law school because it was the best option for me and I figured I might be able to work my way back into finance. I did really well in law school, was very active at the school, and started at a top NYC. Alas, it didn't work out, I didn't make partner. I didn't love the law enough, found a lot things that I did, even at the highest levels boring. Now I am on my own trying to develop a business that blends law and finance where I can be a lawyer/banker and be a refuge for lawyers like me who don't want to practice any more. If I had become a law professor or a partner at a big prominent law firm in NY I would have been happier. Law is just a business to me, it's a way to make money, the financial side of what I do is way more interesting. What I found as tax lawyer and a corporate lawyer, the business people really drove the deal, which is whatI wanted to do, and may times the lawyers just do the paperwork. Hence why, I love finance. You make a difference and you're the only actually putting the deal together. I can give great tax advice or come up with a great M& A structure but if the numbers don't work out then the businesspeople won't listen to me - and they shouldn't. In the context of a deal, the bankers are like the surgeons and the lawyers and accountants are like nurses. I wanted to be the surgeon not the helper. So, before you go into law you need to know exactly what you are stepping into. I stepped into it, in part, because I was told lawyers could do anything even not practice. While that is true, most laywers who want to leave the law or do something different have to go out on their own. So make sure you want to be lawyer before you go and don't worry too much. Getting into law school isn't like getting into med school, there's always a school that will take you so you won't have to go overseas to get your degree.
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Donna’s Answer

When I was in high school, I was very interested in history. I read about Clarence Darrow and was captivated by his life. My brother then started law school and frankly, I wanted to do anything he did! So, I attended one class and was hooked. Even so, I did not want to be a lawyer, but a "legal writer." No such thing, really. I was told that I should pursue law school and find my special niche. My brother dropped out of law school, but I completed my classes. I only had a 2-year degree at the time because I could not figure out what B.A. to get and they had a special program at Western State University to admit a small percentage of experienced people or people like me with no M.A. I got in and about halfway through, I wanted to drop out to become a writer. That plan did not work out and I finished law school. I was a legal secretary and law clerk before passing the Bar. I liked writing and hated the thought of going to court, so I did a lot of ghosting by preparing motions and opposition. I also worked as a research attorney for the superior court, which I also loved. Because of my heavy experience in law and motion, preparing appeals was a natural. I became a certified specialist in appellate law. I figure I would have job security because many attorneys cannot write well, but almost all can speak. I have been an appellate attorney for over 40 years and have mostly enjoyed it.
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Robert’s Answer

You're going to get a lot of unique answers to this, but here was my path:

I graduated in '08 with a major in Political Science and minor in Business. I worked in banking and then telecommunications where I started doing work with contracts. I went to law school in '15 with a goal of doing corporate work when I finished. And now I do work at a small firm specializing in corporate work (M&A, finance, real estate, large local energy provider, etc.).

In the end, just find something you like doing and odds are there'll be a way to tie the law into it. Good luck!
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