As a pre-law student, it is important to refine your online etiquette skills and online presence before you go to law school. Here are a few tips for aspiring law students and what you can do now to make sure you are following the do’s and dont’s online.
1.Use your ILLINOIS email account (the one that ends with @illinois.edu) when emailing University staff, professors, and other University officials.
- However, your University of Illinois email account does expire a few months after you graduate.
- You should have a back up email that is JUST YOUR NAME.
- Example: If your name is John Doe, you should have a back up email that is not a University of Illinois email. Some appropriate examples are: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com
2. Have a clear subject line. If you title an email “Question” or “Inquiry” that is too general and may not get the attention of the person you are emailing.
- Example: “Scheduling a Law School Tour at the University of Illinois College of Law” or “Meeting to Discuss Possible Letter of Recommendation” are better examples than “Tour” or “Meeting.”
3. Use the correct TITLE for the person you are emailing. When in doubt, be formal. Address emails using people’s titles (ex. Professor X, Dean X, Mrs. X, Mr. X.)
- Especially when emailing law school professionals, double check the titles.
4. Introduce yourself when emailing new people at the beginning of the email. Introductions will help your email recipient understand the reason for the email and understand who you are, too.
- Example: My name is John Doe and I am a sophomore in Political Science. I am emailing you about ___________.
5. Use a signature in your email. Email signatures let the recipient know the easiest way to contact you and provide some background information.
John Doe, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Class of 2021
6. Get a LinkedIn Account! LinkedIn is a great way to get connected with employers, connect with professionals, and find job and internship opportunities.
- The Career Center will review your LinkedIn profile and provide feedback for free. Visit their website for more information.
- Reviews take place on Mondays and Wednesdays 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Undergraduate Library, Consultation Corner 1402 W Gregory Drive Urbana, IL
- For more information, click here.
7. Can’t find the University of Illinois employee, professor or advisor you are looking for? Your first step should be to use the University of Illinois Directory.
8. Think carefully about what is publicly available about you–what is your online media presence on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram? Many employers and graduate schools will do an online search before hiring or admitting you. What are your privacy settings? What pictures are posted? Would you want everyone in the world to have access to those? Unfortunately, bad online decisions can live forever, so make sure you are proactive about what information you share.