Mark Your Calendars – Week of February 2

Are you planning on taking the LSAT within the next year? If so, don’t miss the LSAT Test Prep Company Fair THIS Thursday, February 5. Several LSAT prep companies will be there and attendees will have the opportunity to win test prep discounts and scholarships! Also — are you thinking about working before law school or looking for internships? Scroll down for information about Career Center programming that could help you get moving on your job search! Keep reading for more information on these programs and other events!

PLAS Events

LSAT Test Prep Company Fair — THIS Thursday, February 5, 4-6pm, Illini Union Rooms A&B

Learn about the LSAT. Maximize your LSAT performance. Get big discounts. Win a scholarship. These are all reasons to join us for the LSAT prep fair! Representatives from the following LSAT test prep companies are planning to attend: Kaplan, LSATMax, NextStepTestPrep, Powerscore,TestMasters, and Blueprint. Additionally, some companies will be providing 15 minute mini workshops to showcase their respective teaching methods. Each teaching session will be followed by a brief Q&A. Come for deep discounts and a chance to WIN SCHOLARSHIPS TO LSAT PREP PROGRAMS! Refreshments provided! 

Pre-Law 101 — Next Monday, February 9, 2015, 4-5pm, 514 Illini Union Bookstore Building (807 S Wright St)

Are you new to being pre-law, or new to Illinois? This workshop will cover: What it means to be pre-law at Illinois; what law schools are really looking for; what pre-law students can do to maximize their undergraduate years; how to build a strong pre-law resume; what resources are available to assist pre-law students at Illinois. Please register at the link above so that we have enough materials and seating for everyone. All students are welcome. For more information and to register, go here.

For more info about these and other PLAS Events, go here.


Campus Events

Career Center Workshops

Unless otherwise indicated, all workshops are held at the Career Center, 715 S. Wright Street. For more information or to register, go here.

Creating Powerful Resumes and Cover Letters: Monday, February 2, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM or Thursday, February 4, 6:00 PM-7:00 PM

Career Fair Prep, Monday, February 2, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM,

Getting the Job: Interviewing Tips – Thursday, February 5, 4:00 – 5:00 PM

Business Career Fair, February 4 & 5, 12-4pm, Activities & Recreation Center (ARC)


Writers Workshop Programming

Navigating Academic Writing: Writing Group for International Undergraduate Students – Would you like to talk about US academic writing? Do you sometimes wonder what your writing assignments mean? Do you struggle to talk with your professors and classmates about writing? Would you like to practice US conventions of using sources?

Then you would want to join the FREE writing groups for multilingual students hosted by the Writers Workshop. These groups are specifically for writers whose first language is not English and will meet in a 4-week session. Topics will be tailored to your needs but may include organizing ideas, understanding different kinds of writing tasks, understanding instructors’ responses, and using sources. The sessions will be led by an experienced Writers Workshop consultant who understands struggles with writing in English.

In order to participate, you must attend the informational meeting on Tuesday, February 3 at 3:00PM in Room 251 of the Undergraduate Library to sign up.  If you are selected, you must attend all four sessions offered. Students who have participated in Navigating Academic Writing in the past are not eligible.  Email with any questions.


National & International Scholarships Program

An info session to learn more about the UK Fulbright Summer Institutes for freshmen and sophomores will be held on Thursday, February 5, 3:30-4:30pm in Room 514 Illini Union Bookstore Building (entrance near Coble Hall). A program overview, tips for successful applications and a Q&A session will be provided. Applicants must be freshmen or sophomores with a GPA of 3.7 or higher.

The US-UK Fulbright Commission offers special Summer Institutes for US citizens to come to the UK.  These programs provide the opportunity for undergraduates (aged over 18), with at least two years of undergraduate study left to complete, to come to the UK on a three, four, five or six week academic and cultural program.

There are nine Summer Programs available for US students in 2015.  The Summer Institute will cover the majority of the participant costs: round-trip airfare from the US to the UK, tuition and fees at the University, social programs, and room and board.

The application deadline is 26 February or 5 March 2015. More information, including descriptions of the nine institutes, can be found on the program website.


Off Campus Events

Law School Open Houses and Admitted Students Days

As we mentioned in our blog last week, many law schools host open houses for prospective applicants and all law schools strongly encourage students to visit their campuses. Note: spring semester is a time when many law schools will host events specifically for admitted students. Listed below are a couple of Midwest focused events, but make sure you also check the law school websites to see what types of events the schools in which you have an interest are offering.

Northern Illinois University Law School, Information Session, Friday, February 13, Noon-1:30pm. For more information or to register, go here:

Midwest Law School Virtual Fair: February 18, 2015, Co-Sponsored by the Midwest Alliance for Law School Admissions and the Midwest Association for Prelaw Advisors

Attention students! Whether you are looking at attending law school this fall or in a couple of years, this online law fair is a free and convenient way to interact with law school representatives right from your computer. Please click here to register to chat with Midwest law schools on February 18 (available chat times for each school are located on the fair website). Here is a list of the schools attending:

Case Western Reserve University School of Law
Chicago-Kent College of Law
Creighton University
Drake Law School
Indiana University Maurer School of Law
Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law
Marquette University Law School
Michigan State University College of Law
Ohio Northern University College of Law
Saint Louis University School of Law
Southern Illinois University School of Law
University of Dayton School of Law
University of Illinois College of Law
University of Iowa College of Law
University of Kansas School of Law
University of Minnesota Law School
University of Missouri School of Law
University of Nebraska College of Law
University of St. Thomas School of Law – Minneapolis
University of Wisconsin Law School
Valparaiso University Law School
William Mitchell College of Law
Have a great week!

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MOOCs: A new way to learn

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have been around since 2008. You may not have heard of them before, but it’s time to start paying attention.  MOOCs are a great way to learn about a topic – especially the law!  A few courses that may be of interest are provided below.  (Please note that some may have already begun or are beginning soon.)

This course provides international students with the opportunity to become familiar with US law and whether they would want to study it:

This course focuses on actual innocence issues:

This course focuses on the “Life of the Law,” understanding the Common Law and appreciating the case law interpretive process:

For more information or to find additional MOOCs focused on the law, please visit:

Also, please remember to take advantage of Michigan State University’s helpful webinars:

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The 2014 Internship Newsletter is live on Compass!

The long wait for the 2014 Internship Newsletter is finally over!  Please visit our Compass page to begin combing through the newsletter to find summer opportunities that interest you.  If you are a pre-law student, simply log in with your credentials to access the page.  If you are not pre-law but would like to access the newsletter, please follow the instructions here.  Positions are available throughout Illinois and across the country.  Many positions have due dates over break, so we encourage you to begin working on applications as soon as possible.

Remember that winter break is a wonderful time to rest and relax after finals, but it is also a time that you will have fewer obligations.  So, use your break to begin planning for summer.  By the time February rolls around, it may be too late to secure the summer position you want.  Graduating seniors should begin looking for post-graduation jobs, and juniors, sophomores and freshmen should decide how they will spend their summer months.

For those of you who plan on applying to law school in Fall 2015, winter break is a great time to begin preparing for the LSAT.  Take a practice LSAT to see where your strengths and weaknesses lie.  We have uploaded a complete sample LSAT to Compass (source: for your convenience, which can be found here.  You can never start studying too early!  Additionally, this will provide you with some perspective that will help you gauge which LSAT prep company is the best for you at the 2015 LSAT Prep Fair on Thursday, February 5, from 4:00-6:00 pm in Illini Union Room B.

For anyone who has not applied to their prospective schools yet and wishes to start in Fall 2015, FINISH YOUR APPLICATIONS! The time to submit is now!

Enjoy your break and Happy Holidays!


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Reminders for Fall Break

  • Pre-Law Advising Services’ 2014 LSAT Prep Resource Contest is underway. This contest is designed to provide LSAT preparation resources for students demonstrating financial need. Illinois students are eligible to enter by submitting a 500 word essay online here by Tuesday, December 2 at 12:00 NOON. Check out the submission page for more information.  You’ll have plenty of time over Fall Break to submit it!
  • Check to see if your prospective schools are in session over Fall Break. Seeing a law school during normal operating days provides a great opportunity to see what it will be like when you begin as a 1L!
  • If you have not done so already, FINISH YOUR APPLICATIONS! The time to submit is now!
  • If you have decided to retake the LSAT, continue your preparations over Fall Break.
  • If you know that you will be taking the LSAT in the next year, Fall Break is a great time to take a timed practice LSAT.
  • Michigan State University College of Law has held multiple webinars for prospective law students that speak to the application process and beyond. Webinars can be viewed on their website here.
  • Study for FINALS!
  • Freshmen, sophomores and juniors: Update your résumés and begin thinking about possible internships for summer 2015.  It may seem early, but many internships have due dates in February and March.  Also, look out for our annual Internship Newsletter that will be posted to our Compass page in mid-December.
  • Have a wonderful Fall Break!
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Law School Application Week: Transcripts

By this point in the application process, you should have already requested your transcripts and had them sent to your prospective schools.  However, if you have let this important step slip through the cracks until now…get it done!

LSAC has provided an eight-step process for preparing to order your transcripts:

  1. Log in to your account.
  2. Click the Learn about Credential Service button at the bottom of your homepage to access the “Credentials” page of your account.
  3. Scroll down to “Your Credential Assembly Service Evaluation” and click Add Institutions.
  4. For any institutions that are already listed, click Edit to complete your information.
  5. Add any additional institutions that you have attended.
  6. Once you have entered all of your institution information, scroll down to the bottom of the Credentials page and click Continue.
  7. Review your information to ensure that it is accurate. Then hit Confirm.
  8. Visit the “Transcripts” page of your account. A Transcript Request Form link will be listed below each institution. Click these links to access your forms.*

Once you have accessed your forms, you may request an official copy of your transcript from the Registrar’s Office of any and all schools you have attended.  Many schools will charge a fee for forwarding your transcripts.  After the school has forwarded the transcripts to LSAC, they will be processed within two weeks.  Since processing your transcripts takes multiple weeks and law schools will not consider your application complete without them, request your transcripts as soon as possible!

Visit the UIUC Registrar’s Office online here.

We’ll be back tomorrow with the final edition of AppTips for Law School Application Week!


*Courtesy of

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Law School Application Week: Social Media

As Application Week continues, we would like to remind students of the importance of mindful social media interaction.  Please take a look at our post from September in order to brush up on the finer points of the “Grandma Test.”  In addition to what you should not post on social media, take this time to explore the positive uses of social media.

Social media exists in many forms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  Each social media outlet offers an opportunity to show a positive side of yourself.  Post activities you have taken part in to Facebook, and use it to organize groups that mean something to you or to follow or join an organization that interests you.  Similarly with Twitter: tweet positively, follow prospective schools and use it to increase your reputation as an informed go-getter.

At this time in your budding professional career, you should also open a LinkedIn account if you have not already done so.  LinkedIn offers the chance to create an online profile specifically for professional networking.  Creating a profile will also allow you to insert more information than would be possible on a one page résumé.  In this way, interested schools and employers can learn even more about you.  Take advantage of the wonderful advancements in career development and employ social media to work for you!

We’ll be back tomorrow with more AppTips for Law School Application Week!

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November To-Do Lists

The approach of November at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign signals varying thoughts in the minds of students.  Some will think about the approaching holidays, while others will dread the impending cold.  For those prospective law students out there, we recommend using November to visit schools, submit early decision applications (if you have not done so already), and update your résumés.

This year, Fall Break at UIUC will take place during the week of November 24th.  For those of you considering law school, research whether schools that interest you will be open during that time.  Visiting a school while it is in session provides a tremendous opportunity to observe classes, meet students and tour the facility.

To anyone applying for early decision Fall 2015: make sure you check your due dates.  You should not wait until the last minute to submit early decision applications.  In case of a computer issue or a typographical error you would like to change, it is best to leave yourself some time to review and submit the best application possible.  Be sure to use these next two weeks wisely as they could determine the next three years of your life.

Freshmen, sophomores, and juniors who are considering law school should use November to update résumés.  Having a polished résumé will allow you to start submitting applications for summer internships as soon as winter break rolls around.  Winter break is a great time to sift through and choose summer positions that interest you.  With a résumé at the ready, applying will be a less stressful process.  Besides, periodically updating your résumé is a great habit to get into.


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Mark Your Calendars: Week of October 27

PLAS Events

Pre-Law 101: TODAY, Monday, Oct. 27 at 4:00, Room 514 Illini Union Bookstore Building. This is the final Pre-Law 101 session for Fall Semester. Are you new to pre-law? Whether you are a first-year student or a senior, this workshop will give an in-depth orientation to being a pre-law student at the University of Illinois. Topics we will cover: What law schools are looking for; choosing a major/minor; helpful coursework to take; maximizing your extracurricular opportunities; planning ahead for the LSAT and law school applications. We will also answer your questions, so bring them! Please click here to register so that we can ensure enough seating and materials for everyone.

Gaining Practical Skills for Legal Practice: Associate Deans Bill Powers and Anthony Niedwiecki, from The John Marshall Law School, will be on campus Tuesday, Nov. 4 at 5:00, Room 514 Illini Union Bookstore Building. Gaining practical skills before graduating from law school has never been more important…and the process begins before law school even starts! Join us to discuss how aspiring lawyers can begin building practical skills for a successful legal career. We will highlight which skills law schools and legal employers find appealing, and discuss ways to gain those skills both now and during law school. Food will be served!


Career Center

Winter Break Job Shadow Program The Winter Break Job Shadow Program will help students engage with a company of interest, establish a professional network, and foster potential career opportunities! This program is a one-day commitment over winter break (between Dec. 22, 2014 – Jan. 16, 2015). The Job Shadow Program is open to ALL MAJORS and will include a variety of industries. Students must be in their Freshman, Sophomore, or Junior year.
To apply, students must attend one of the Job Shadow Information Sessions listed below:
• Monday, Oct. 27 at 3 p.m., Gregory Hall 223
• Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 1 p.m., Burrill Hall 124
• Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 4 p.m., Gregory Hall 223
• Thursday, Oct. 30 at noon, Materials Science and Engineering Building 119
• Friday, Oct. 31 at 10 a.m., Gregory Hall 319

Workshops–Unless otherwise indicated, all Career Center workshops will be held in the Career Center Conference Room, 715 S. Wright Street.  For more information and to register, go here:

• Tuesday, Nov. 4 at 6 pm – Creating Powerful Résumés & Cover Letters
• Wednesday, Nov. 5 at 4 p.m., Making Your Major Decision (Online at
• Thursday, Nov. 6 at 10 a.m., Creating Powerful Résumés & Cover Letters


Law School Sessions

 Harvard Information Sessions: Harvard will provide information sessions via Google Hangouts. Each session will include a Q&A following the general presentation. For more information and to register, please visit Harvard’s Google+ page or click on one of the events below.

Fall 2014 Online Information Session Schedule

General Information Session

Wednesday, October 29th 12:00-1:00pm 

Monday, November 3rd 5:30-6:30pm

Applying After Time Off

Wednesday, November 5th 12:00-1:00pm 

Thursday, November 13 5:30-6:30pm

Application Requirements & Advice

Monday, November 17th 12:00-1:00pm 

Wednesday, November 19th 5:30-6:30pm 


University of Illinois, College of Law Events: The College of Law provides various lectures relating to different fields of law that are open to the public. Below you will find one of the upcoming lectures.

Innocence Project Lecture: Meet the Exoneree – Jarrett Adams: Thursday, November 06, 2014 in the Max L. Rowe Auditorium, College of Law Building from 12:00 PM–1:00 PM. Jarrett Adams is the co-founder of Life After Justice, an organization the helps exonerees and parolees re-enter society. Adams is also a law student at Loyola University Chicago, a journey he started after he was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to 28 years in prison at the age of 17. Come to hear about his experiences and his organization. Lunch will be provided.

More lectures are scheduled for 2015 and will be added to this blog as the dates near.


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Getting to Know Your Professors

Law school admissions officers frequently stress the importance of quality letters of recommendation in their decision whether to admit prospective students.  For that reason, you must carefully select a professor or supervisor (if choosing an employer).*  If a student chooses a recommender who does not know them well, the letter will fail to impress.  In fact, such a “general” letter of recommendation can negatively influence an application.  Prospective law students should begin acquainting themselves with their professors early to avoid this unenviable situation.

In order to achieve a personal connection with your professors, visit them during office hours.  Professors hold office hours so they can get to know their students and help them better understand the subject matter of the course.  Stop by early in the semester and explain to your professor that you would like to get to know them better.  Bring questions about material that was covered in a recent class or try to focus the conversation on a professor’s area of expertise.  Often times, professors focus their time on a specific area of interest within their field.  Employ your research skills and try to determine the professor’s area of interest.  Then, inquire about that topic.

Stay for ten or fifteen minutes and thank your professor for his or her time.  Now, your professor will recognize you and will know you personally each time you contribute in class.  Go back to office hours as needed.  Provided you do well in the course, you have established the necessary groundwork for requesting a letter of recommendation at a later date.


*Typically, students should choose professors to write their letters of recommendation.  For more information, see the University of Chicago’s thoughts on the topic.

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Mark Your Calendars: Week of Oct. 6

Be sure to check out our Compass page for more information on Pre-Law Advising and the path to law school.

PLAS Events

Our next Pre-Law 101 session will be tomorrow, Tuesday, October 7, 4pm, Room 514 IUB. This is a great workshop if you’re new to the University or just new to being pre-law. We’ll cover topics including: selecting majors/minors/coursework, creating a resume for law school, and extracurricular options for building pre-law skills. To register, visit our calendar.

The Applying to Law School Workshop will be held on October 13, 2014, 4 pm, Room 514 IUB. Are you applying to law school right now? Finding the application process a little complicated? In this workshop, we’ll walk you through the application process, including: A checklist of what to do and when; tips for using your online application account effectively; troubleshooting application issues; creating an application strategy; and keeping your applications organized. Note that we will not be covering the personal statement and resume in this session due to the separate workshop on that topic. Applicants are welcome to attend both workshops. No registration necessary.

A Yale Law School Admissions Webinar will be held on October 15, 2014, 3-4 pm, online. This webinar will feature a Yale Law School Admissions professional to provide an overview of Yale Law Admissions. The majority of the session will be taking Q&A from students, so bring your questions! Students are encouraged to explore Yale’s website and blog here: To register for this event, please visit: Registrants will also have access to a recorded version of the session, for those who are unable to be present during the session.

If you would like to perfect your personal statement and resume, then plan on attending the Perfecting Your Personal Statement and Resume for Law School event on October 16, 2014, 4 pm, Room 514 IUB. The personal statement and resume are a law school applicant’s opportunity to tell a school all about yourself and why you will make a great addition to their class. Students consistently tell us that this is the hardest part of the application, so we have developed this workshop to provide some insight. We will cover: What the personal statement is; how to begin writing it; what to include and exclude; writing separate addenda; how the personal statement and resume should work together; and an overview of the law school resume. Bring your questions because there will be plenty of time to ask them. To register, visit our calendar.


Illinois Leadership Center Programs and Services

Integrity: Investigate your personal values and the intersection of morals, ethics, and integrity on Saturday, October 11, 2014.

Ignite: Develop skill in leading change and understanding systems thinking on Saturday, October 18, 2014.

For more information on either the Integrity or Ignite I-Programs, or for more information about upcoming leadership programs visit


Council On Legal Education Opportunity (CLEO) – College Scholars Program

CLEO is sponsoring its pre-law seminars at DePaul Law School on Saturday, Oct. 25 from 9 am – 5 pm. A separate seminar is hosted for freshmen (The Road to Law School), sophomores (Sophomore Super Saturday) and Juniors/Seniors/Grads (Juniors Jumpstart the LSAT). Register for these free seminars here.


Law School Open Houses

Law schools often offer opportunities for prospective applicants to visit their campuses, have a tour and possibly sit in on a 1L class. Here is some information we have received about upcoming admissions events at several Midwestern law schools. To find out about other law school open houses, visit the law schools’ websites!


University of Chicago Law School: Friday, October 24, 9am-1pm. For more info and to register, go here:


DePaul University College of Law: Saturday, November 22, 9am. For more info and to register, go here:


Drake University Law School: Friday, October 24, 2014, 9:15 am. For more info and to register, go here:


ITT-Chicago-Kent College of Law: Saturday, October 18, 10am-1pm. For more info and to register, go here:


John Marshall Law School-Chicago: Saturday, November 22, 9am. For more info and to register, go here:


University of Nebraska College of Law: Wednesday, October 29, 6pm. For more info and to register, go here:


University of Notre Dame Law School: Monday, October 13, 9am-3pm. For more info and to register, go here:


2015 Study Abroad Extensions

Please note that the Spring Semester 2015 application deadline has been extended for the following study abroad programs:

October 10, 2014 Extended Deadline

University of Wollongong, Australia

Swansea University, United Kingdom

University of York, United Kingdom

University of Liverpool, United Kingdom

National University of Ireland


October 15, 2014 Extended Deadline

University of Adelaide, Australia

University of Western Australia

University of Canterbury, New Zealand

University of Otago, New Zealand

University of Birmingham, United Kingdom

Lancaster University, United Kingdom

Program information and the online application can be found in the links provided for each program.  Alternatively, students can visit


Walk-in advising is available on weekdays from 9:00 am – 4:45 pm in the Study Abroad Resource Room (112 International Studies Building).


Internship Opportunities

The Ethnography of the University Initiative (EUI) launched its undergraduate research journal PEER REVIEW: The Undergraduate Research Journal of the Ethnography of the University Initiative, in May 2014. We are currently looking for 2 undergraduate student interns to serve as Managing Editors, joining a team of 3 already in place. Ideally candidates will be upper division undergrads in either an honors program or at the senior thesis stage. We are also interested, however, in promising students with research or writing experience. The student Managing Editors work with and mentored by the Senior Editors and the Advisory Board.

As the undergraduate editing team will consist of five students, we anticipate an average of 3-5 hours per week. We ask that interested candidates provide a cover letter outlining their interest, a resume, and a reference from a faculty mentor or program administrator (McNair, James Scholars, etc.). All applications should be submitted electronically (as one document if possible) to, with “Undergraduate Editor” in the subject line. Deadline is TODAY,October 6th, 2014.

Any questions should be addressed to Karen Rodriguez’G, Program Coordinator for EUI, at  For more general information on EUI and its mission, please see our website:



The Public Defender’s Office is a fast-paced environment. Ideal students for this program are: interested in criminal law proceedings; willing to take a variety of assignments; able to work independently when given appropriate support; and able to devote 90 hours during the semester to the Public Defender’s Office.

By Friday, October 10, students seeking to participate in the Public Defender Internship Program must submit via e-mail to a cover letter, resume and writing sample. The cover letter needs to address each of the following elements: 1) explain your interest in and motivation for undertaking this internship, 2) share your experience in working with only a modest level of direct supervision, and 3) discuss your plans for accommodating participation in the internship in your schedule (.e.g, how many other credit hours do you plan to carry, will you be studying for the LSAT, do you have other significant time commitments).  The writing sample can be a paper you have written from a previous class. All of those materials will be reviewed for a decision on acceptance into the program by the departmental internship committee.  At a minimum, students seeking to participate in this program need (1) to have completed 45 credit hours by Spring, 2015 (2) with at least one year of residence on this campus and (3) to have earned a cumulative UIUC grade point average of 3.0 or higher.  They must (4) have completed PS 101: U.S. Government & Politics  and (5) have no arrests or criminal convictions – as an adult or juvenile – or serious campus disciplinary violations involving campus or local law enforcement.  In addition to work in the Courthouse, students will need to attend a class for one hour per week on Wednesday afternoons.


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