Interested in a Legal Career? Here’s how to do it!
A career in the legal world has been a source of fantasy for many students since long. Whether it’s the mystery involved, the thrill of solving a crime, the passion for getting justice or the overpowering aura of a courtroom; there are quite a few things that draw one to this profession.
There are many careers in the legal industry that you can pursue. For instance, you could become an attorney, a paralegal, legal secretary, mediator or a court reporter.
Here’s a brief guide to getting your foot through the door in this exciting industry to give yourself a great start.
Brush up on the Skills
General skills required for the legal industry include listening skills, communication skills, organizational skills and critical-reasoning skills. Profession-specific skills include being detail-oriented for court reporters, problem-solving and research skills for lawyers, computer and interpersonal skills for paralegals and decision-making skills for judges and mediators. Some people may be naturally blessed with these skills. For others, they can brush up and improve on them by practicing them in daily life and in real-life situations.
Head to the College or Enroll in an Accredited Online Program
Besides the skills, you need to get the basic qualifications for the relevant legal career you wish to hatch in to. To become a judge, mediator or an attorney you will need quite a few years of education. You will start off with an undergraduate degree followed by 3 years of law school. That means a net of 7 years of study in these key occupations.
For paralegals and court reporters, about 2 years of study at a community college is required, which will arm you with the right qualifications to start off in these professions.
Get some Training
The best learning and acquisition of skills for these professions comes through experience and training. You can either opt for formal training programs offered online or at various colleges, or you could get on the job training. On the job training is mostly a practice for the paralegal and court reporting professions. For lawyers and mediators, training can be generally availed from the American Bar Association (ABA), Federal Judicial Center, and other prominent bodies in the industry.
Get a License if Required
For the paralegal, mediator/arbitrator and court reporting career, you will not require a license. However, you will need a license to work as an attorney or as a judge. Besides possessing a degree from an ABA-accredited law program, you will also need to pass the bar exam and be found by an admitting board to have the character required for this profession. Armed with these, you can practice as a licensed attorney in the industry.
Once you meet all these minimal qualification and educational standards, you can truly make a mark for yourself in the legal industry.