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Is majoring in Criminology going to help me in law school?

I want to expand my knowledge on what a human brain does, but law is fighting against the injustice. I still see myself being a criminal defense attorney but is criminology a good start? #law #fightinjustice

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Kim’s Answer

Hi Karina,

Fighting injustice is a strong calling, and it's great that is what you want to do! From what I have seen, those who suffer the strongest injustices tend to not have the financial means to secure attorneys, or, if they do, they can't afford the really good ones. I make this point because, you, as an attorney, need to have a basic understanding of certain concepts, so as to not need to consult with experts all the time. Experts are very expensive!

An example: speed, tire tread and type of road surface all affect stopping distance of a car. I encourage you to not only take some classes to give you some background in these other areas (including technology!), but also to do two other things. One, try to get into a police citizen patrol program, explorer program, or even become a reserve police officer. Why? Because it will give you remarkable insight into how police think and act, that you will be able to use later to the advantage of your clients. Second, start your law career as a prosecutor. Same reason. You really need to know how your opponent thinks to be able to out maneuver them!

I do some freelance work for attorneys, almost exclusively on Civil Rights type cases. The volume of activity is overwhelming. We can always use more help! Me experience as a police officer allows me to look at a case from a different perspective, and help the attorneys to be more prepared. It is extremely rewarding work.

To answer your question: Criminology is a good start. But try to make sure you take professors who are challenging, rather than simply trying to get a good GPA by taking the easy ones. Get what you are paying for - a real education. Learning to think critically, write persuasively, listen to opposing viewpoints, and defend yours, are all important skills.

Best of luck!
Kim
Thank you comment icon What would you consider to be a more effective start? Thank you so much for the feedback karina
Thank you comment icon Criminology is ok if you use your electives wisely.Look at undergrad as an investment to prepare you for success in law school.Challenge yourself!Learn statistics,logic, and Latin vocabulary.Do speech/debate.Join student groups.Develop true self confidence.Believe in yourself.Push yourself to limits, physically and mentally.Law school is HARD.Hone your wordprocessing skills.If available,take a legal course or two: Legal Research & Writing is good, as is moot court.Develop organizational,studying, and note-taking skills. When you write a paper, really get into it, rather than doing something that is "good enough."Learn to analyze issues from all perspectives, fairly, rather than just your own point of view. The major is not nearly as important as what you manage to learn! Kim Igleheart
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