What if You Don’t Want to be a Lawyer?
- Sep 03, 2010
- Legal Life
What if you go to law school and decide that being a lawyer sounds about as pleasant as cleaning your fingernails with a bamboo shoot? A few weeks ago, Vault asked that question on their blog and got a couple of responses from lawyers who basically went that route: didn’t really know what they wanted to do out of college and went to law school.
While the sample only includes two lawyers who went on to do work in publishing, this is an educational moment for all would-be lawyers out there. Everyone should prepare themselves for the idea that they might not enjoy large swaths of what they learn (and learn to do) in law school. Most of you are not wildly familiar with what law school entails, and it’s perfectly natural that aspects of it might not be what you want to do.
The lesson to learn from the story of Roger and Jessica (the two lawyers quoted in this article) is: don’t panic. They learned to adapt their goals, time and time again, due to their changing interests and the changing world around them. In the present economy, adaptability is a necessity. If you take out a bunch of loans to pay for law school, you might have to get a job out of law school to pay the bills that’s not exactly the job you want. If the economy tanks further, then you might have to settle for a job that’s lower paying than what you want (but since the median lawyer salary is still north of 80k, I’m going to be playing the world’s smallest violin for you).
Suck it up and stick it out. Eventually, if you work hard, you’ll find something that’s tolerable. Or at least make enough money that you can go do something interesting, like chopping down trees or eating competitively.
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