QI’m a second-year law student (at a T1 school), and I know that I don’t want to work for a law firm. The thought of drafting pleadings and motions for the next ten years makes me sick. The good news is that I knew going into law school that I probably didn’t want to work for a law firm. The past three semesters and my summer experience confirmed this.
Now, I need to decide what the hell I’m going to do. I’m interested in business, particularly investing, but unfortunately I have an undergraduate history degree, and that’s not getting me anywhere. My question is: What options are available for someone in my position? I understand that’s a very broad question, and I’m hoping for a response of more than “drop out.”
Maybe you’ve heard of people in similar situations and have some advice? I’m thinking outside the box and considering pursuing a non-legal internship this summer. Thanks for your advice.
AOkay, I promise not to suggest that you drop out. Actually, I think dropping out right now would be sort of stupid since you’re almost halfway home—and you’re at a T1 school. A law degree from a top school is still a plus, even if you have no interest in ever practicing law. It’s not an automatic door-opener into the financial world, but it’s a leg up relative to a BA or BS.
I admire your unambiguous disdain for practicing law and you’re unequivocal commitment to pursuing non-legal jobs right away. If you’re this sure you hate law now, you’ll not like it any more three years down the road. So you’re off to a good start.
As for my advice, I think your idea to find an out-of-the-box summer gig is a great one. Forget the whole law firm summer associate thing and look for a job or internship with an investment bank, hedge fund, private equity firm, etc. The good news is that unlike the legal biz, Wall Street is humming right now. I had a drink with a senior banker at Merrill Lynch Friday night—and he told me that he’s never been busier. So, believe it or not, now might be a good time to look for a Wall Street job. Who knows, it might even be easier to find a good finance job than a good law job.
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