Interesting, fun, and productive things for everyone pre-law to do over winter break

Make your summer plans!

  • Apply for spring and summer 2018 internships! Check out our 2017 Internship Newsletter over on our Compass page for over 25 pages of internship listings and ideas. (Don’t wait until spring to look for summer internships–many will be filled by then.)
  • Apply for Summer 2018 pre-law programs. In addition to those we listed in our Internship Newsletter, we’ve also posted a spreadsheet of pre-law summer programs over on our Compass page with links and application details. Note: Many scholarships are available to incoming 1Ls even if you don’t know which law school you are attending yet, like this one, so it’s still a good time to apply for them.
  • Apply for Summer 2018 Study Abroad programs. Now is the time, as many summer study abroad program deadlines are in January/February like this Rome trip about Italian healthcare (due Jan. 15) or this ACES in Argentina program. Explore all available summer programs on the Study Abroad website.

REGISTER for the June 2018 LSAT. With LSAT takers up 20% this year, we expect next year to fill even earlier than it typically does (around spring break). Registration is open here: https://www.lsac.org/jd/lsat/test-dates-deadlines/2018-2019/us-canada-june

Apply for scholarships!

  • Explore the Top Scholars website here–they offer lots of opportunities like these upcoming scholarships: UK Summer Fulbright, Boren, and Gilman scholarships.
  • Did you know that you can get a scholarship for writing one tweet? Or making a 2 minute video? Or being left-handed? Check out our 275+ Scholarship Spreadsheet–listing ALL kinds of scholarships, not just essays–over on our Compass page.

Update your professional and online presence

  • Draft or update your resume to reflect what you accomplished this semester. These Career Center resources on drafting resumes can be helpful.
  • Create or update your LinkedIn profile
  • Create a professional-sounding email account (such as your full name, not jedimaster97 or hotmama23) if you are getting ready to apply for jobs, internships, scholarships, or graduate school
  • Clean up your social media/online presence. When you apply for jobs, internships, or graduate school, many people will Google you or review your social media sites, so make sure they are appropriate for those audiences. Take down anything questionable, un-tag yourself, and double check your privacy settings.

Informational Interviews. While you have some free time, take the opportunity to reach out to local lawyers and get some insight into legal careers. Ask if you can take them to coffee and chat about their careers.

  • How to find lawyers: Do your parents know any lawyers? Do you have any family members or family friends who are lawyers? They probably know even more lawyers to whom they can refer you for even more interviews. If you don’t know any lawyers and you live in Illinois, use the Illinois Lawyer Finder here, which allows you to search for lawyers by location and practice area around the state
  • For more details on how to conduct the interview use this Career Center resource.

Read up on legal issues and legal careers

  • A great book providing insight into lots of different legal careers is 24 Hours with 24 Lawyers by Jasper Kim. 
  • Legal websites and blogs abound. Here are popular legal sites where you can learn about hot legal issues and about the legal profession.
    • SCOTUSblog for up-to-the-minute analyses of what the Supreme Court is hearing and doing
    • Law.com for a look inside the legal profession from various practice areas
    • LawProfessorBlogs.com Want to get a peek into the world of law professors and the topics they consider important? This site provides a directory of many different blogs by topic area and includes everything from Adoption Law to White Collar Crime and everything in-between.
    • Illinois State Bar Association’s website includes a blog and daily legal news about legal issues around the state. (You can find other state sites by searching, for example, “Texas” and state bar association.)

Listen to podcasts–there are tons of great legal podcasts out there, including these.

  • I Am the Law presents interviews with all different types of lawyers, from environmental lawyers to prosecutors to family law and corporate.
  • Serial provides an in depth view of the nuance and challenges of prosecuting crimes as each season analyzes one criminal case.
  • Women in the Law. This special short-term series explored issues of particular relevance to women in the profession.
  • The Girl’s Guide to Law School–Don’t be fooled by the name; this is not just for girls! This podcast is relevant for everyone interested in law school. With topics ranging from Will Law School Be a Disaster to Which Law School Should I Go To to explaining OCI (an interview process for law students) to Avoiding Disasters in Law School to how to read cases, this podcast truly has something for everyone.

If you are currently applying to law school:

  • Finish those applications. It is time to get them in!
  • Plan your law school visits–many schools will have open houses or visit days in January and February. This may require pre-registration and some travel that you’ll want to plan in advance.
  • Follow your law schools on social media if you’d like to know when they are making decisions or scheduling open house/admitted student events.
  • Make a Pre-Law Advising appointment–If you have application questions or want some feedback on an essay, you can make a phone or Skype appointment if you’re not in the area. Here is our appointment availability over winter break.
    • Appointments with a pre-law advisor are available through December 21.
    • The office will be closed December 25 through January 1, reopening on Jan. 2. (Staff will not be available during this time.)
    • Appointments will be available again January 2 through January 12.
    • Our regular schedule will resume with the Spring Semester on January 16.

 

 

 

 

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