University of Vermont

Considering Pre-Law and Applying to Law School

Pre-Law Advising

Earning a law degree requires a significant investment in time, energy & money. This commitment is best met if you spend some time learning about yourself, the law school experience and the practice of law.  To help you with this process, pre-law advising at UVM is provided by the Pre-Law Advisor at the Career Center and several faculty members within the College of Arts & Sciences.

Meet the pre-law advisors
UVM's main pre-law advisor:

Departmental Advisors:

Exploration of the law field

Thoughtfully evaluate your reasons for pursuing a law degree, discover what law is all about, assess whether you would like practicing law, develop a realistic picture of what attorneys do, and obtain real-world experience in legal settings. Informational interviewing, job shadowing, interning and engaging in on-campus activities are all great ways to explore legal careers and gain relevant skills. Discover pre-law related resources and campus activities.

Links to Learn about the Legal Field

Opportunities to explore at UVM:

When is the right time to go to law school?

The “right time” will vary from person to person. Law schools are interested in people who take time off to gain related experience as well as students who choose to continue immediately after their undergraduate work. Taking time to gain relevant experience may enhance your application and make you more marketable to law schools and to employers after law school. Lawyers with specialized skills and expertise are competitive candidates for positions in both the public and private sectors.

Preparing for law school/major choice

What is the best way to prepare for law school? The best preparation for law school is a challenging undergraduate program.

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The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) expects a student's "college education should stand on its own merits as preparation for a lifetime of active involvement in a diverse and changing society." Follow your true interests and get excellent grades. In addition you will want to:

  1. Be a responsible and respectful member of the community. You will be asked to disclose any disciplinary or legal actions in your application
  2. Develop positive relationships with professors (References!)
  3. Attend pre-law related events
  4. Explore the field of law through informational interviews, campus activities or internships.
  5. Learn about the current legal job market & identify areas of interest

Planning on taking time before law school? Consider how you will gain experience and skills to enhance your law school application and make you a stronger candidate for jobs following law school.

Does UVM have a pre-law major? The University of Vermont, along with most colleges and universities in the United States, does not have a pre-law major. However, it is important to understand the core skills and abilities that law schools are seeking and strive to acquire them before attending law school.  

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The American Bar Association does not recommend any specific group of courses to prepare for legal education. The skills that law schools are looking for include analytical and problem-solving skills, critical reading abilities, writing skills, oral communication and listening abilities, general research skills, task organization and management skills and the values of serving others and promoting justice.

In addition to these fundamental skills and values, there are some basic areas of knowledge helpful to a legal education. These include:

  • A broad understanding of history, including the various factors (social, political, economic and cultural) that have influenced the development of society
  • A fundamental understanding of political thought and the contemporary American political system
  • Basic mathematical and financial skills
  • A basic understanding of human behavior and social interaction
  • An understanding of diverse cultures within and beyond the US, of international institutions and issues, of world events and of the increasing interdependence of nations and communities in our world.
  • Finally, many of our students have found it helpful to take classes in logic and philosophy.

Selecting a Law School

We recommend a process of self-assessment whereby the candidate gathers information about those factors that are critical to their needs, priorities, and goals.

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Considerations may include: reputation of school, location, class offerings and atmosphere, cultural and racial/ethnic diversity, chances of admission, cost, and employment prospects following graduation.
The following links may be useful in your decision-making process:

Law school application and financial aid


Application resources

 

Financing a law school education

Law School Application Timeline

Use this detailed example timeline to develop your own application plan with the goal of submitting applications by late November. 

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SPRING (PRIOR TO APPLYING)

SUMMER (PRIOR TO APPLYING)

FALL (OF APPLICATION YEAR)

  1. Attend Pre-Law related workshops and events - watch the Career Center’s Calendar of Events.
  2. Take the October LSAT if needed. If necessary, register for and take the December LSAT.
  3. Finalize the list of law schools to which you will be applying.
  4. Continue and put final touches on your personal statement.
  5. Consider attending an LSAC Law School Forum in various cities.
  6. Submit your complete applications and necessary materials by the end of November (individual law schools will advertise much later deadlines, but the earlier you apply, the more competitive you will be).

WINTER/SPRING (AFTER APPLICATIONS ARE SUBMITTED)

  1. Confirm that your applications are complete through your LSAC account.
  2. Gather necessary financial documents and submit necessary financial aid applications/paperwork.
  3. If desired, send updated Fall transcript to LSAC or directly to law schools where you applied.
  4. Continue to do as well as possible in your classes – if you are waitlisted at a law school, a strong last semester can be beneficial.
  5. Think critically about where you have been granted admission and/or waitlisted as well as any scholarship or financial aid packages received.
  6. Notify us of your decision.

UVM Student Law School Acceptances

UVM applicants are consistently accepted to law schools at a higher percentage rate than the national average.

Schools that have accepted UVM applicants
  • Albany Law School
  • American University
  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law
  • Boston College Law School
  • Boston University
  • Brooklyn Law School
  • California Western School of Law
  • Case Western Reserve
  • Catholic University of America
  • Kent College of Law
  • CUNY at Queens
  • Cornell University
  • Duke University
  • Florida Costal School of Law
  • Fordham University School of Law
  • Franklin Pierce Law Center
  • George Washington University Law School
  • Georgetown University Law Center
  • Golden Gate University School of Law
  • Gonzaga University
  • Hofstra University
  • Harvard Law School
  • Lewis and Clark
  • Loyola University New Orleans
  • New England School of Law
  • New York Law School
  • New York University School of Law
  • Northeastern University School of Law
  • Northwestern School of Law
  • Oklahoma City University of Law School
  • Pace University
  • Pennsylvania State University - Dickson
  • Quinnipiac College School
  • Roger Williams University School
  • Rutgers School of Law-Newark
  • Seattle University
  • Seton Hall University School
  • St. John's University School
  • Suffolk University
  • Syracuse University
  • Thomas M. Cooley
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Touro College
  • UCLA
  • Tulane University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Florida
  • University of Idaho
  • University of Maine School
  • University of Miami
  • University of Maryland School
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Montana
  • University of North Carolina
  • University of Oregon
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Southern California
  • University of Toledo
  • University of Virginia
  • Vermont Law School
  • Villanova University
  • Washington & Lee University
  • Washington University - Missouri
  • Western New England College
  • Widener University School
  • William and Mary School
  • Yale Law School

Last modified January 30 2014 10:09 AM