Non-law degree action plan

You’re studying a non-law degree, but you’re keen on becoming a lawyer and want to know what you can be doing to learn more and prepare. Here is a brief checklist to get you started:

  • Learn more about the GDL; particularly when and where to apply, and what it covers. Try to talk to someone who has done it to get the inside story and go to your careers service for further information.
  • Get some practical work experience at a law firm, barristers’ chambers or legal advice centre. Talk to friends, family, acquaintances – anyone with a connection to the legal profession. Your careers service could be a great source of help and contacts here.
  • Go to law fairs, firm presentations and open days to meet people face to face. Think about how to stand out by asking good questions (eg, about a recent deal, case or merger).
  • Join your university student law society (or even better, law for non-law society, if that exists!) to meet other likeminded students and attend networking events, information sessions, firm presentations and more.
  • Continue to work hard at your academic studies. Recruiters want to see exemplary grades and yes, your first-year grades do count!
  • Start to develop your commercial awareness by reading the business sections on newspapers’ websites, as well the more specific legal press – a couple of the more reputable broadsheet newspapers also have great law sections. Keep up to date with LCN’s News section, particularly the weekly commercial round-up.
  • Engage with some of the extracurricular options at university (eg, sport, debating  or music) to make yourself into a well-rounded candidate and work out how to reflect this on your CV and application forms.
  • Consider whether you want to become a solicitor or barrister. Read the ‘Solicitors’ and ‘Barristers’ sections in The LawCareers.Net Handbook (available free at university law departments, careers services and law fairs) to help you decide.
  • Sign up to LCN Weekly; our free weekly email newsletter will deliver news and information about the profession, plus advice and reminders throughout the legal recruitment calendar, straight to your inbox.