Can I Become A Lawyer?

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Prospective law students often understand that they're facing a big decision when thinking about law school. They typically consider factors like their potential debt, how they'll obtain their first job, and whether they'll actually enjoy being a lawyer. Yet there is also another question that sometimes crosses their minds. That question is "Am I capable of succeeding in law school?" 

I believe that most hardworking, intelligent people can power through law school and graduate. It helps if prospective law students enjoy reading and writing, as you’ll be reading dry case law and drafting memos and briefs. And just to be clear, you don’t need to be a "logical genius" to attend law school. I took a logic course in college and it was somewhat helpful as I began preparing for the LSAT. Having said this, I’d argue that you learn a good amount of legal logic by studying for the LSAT and (obviously) during your three years in law school. The fact that you don’t think you’re a “logical genius” shouldn’t hold you back if you want to go to law school.

Therefore, I suppose the real question is whether you should actually attend law school, considering your potential career prospects and potential law school debt. I can’t answer this question for you. Having said this, you need to think hard about your goals and priorities. Do you want to attend law school so that you can live comfortably? Do you think of law school as a good backup plan? Have you obtained an internship in the legal industry and seen what lawyers do on a day-to-day basis? Sure, you learn some transferable skills as a law school graduate, but I’d argue that you should only attend law school if you want to become an attorney.

If you’re currently thinking about law school, I’d recommend that you sit down and speak with current law students and attorneys. Describe your ultimate career goals and ask them for their feedback. Then ask them about their experience and the challenges that they faced as law students and lawyers. These conversations may open your eyes and may further encourage or discourage you from pursuing law school.

Beyond conversations with current practitioners, I created Deciding on Law School to help prospective students think about attending law school. This is certainly a big decision, so you’re going to want to gather as much information as possible before making your final call.