Career Services Office
Evening Student Career Information
Tips for Success
Marketing Your Skills: For many evening students becoming an attorney is a change in careers and employers will want to know why you are making this change. It is important that you emphasize your desire to become an attorney and not stress your disdain for a current employer. Create a pitch statement for why you are in law school and interested in being a lawyer.
- Explain in a positive way why you are switching careers
- Explain how law was relevant to your previous position
- State your willingness to start over and be an entry level employee
Preparing Your Resume: Many evening students struggle with creating a resume that highlights their relevant skills and meets the space requirement. It is vital that your resume conforms to the current standards and markets your experience in the best light as it will be the employers first impression of you. Thus, when preparing your resume be sure to do the following:
- Put your resume in a legal format
- Do not focus your skills on your current career
- Highlight your transferable skills in legal language, i.e. for a teacher:
- DO NOT SAY: Taught subject matter
- DO SAY: Broke down complex information into simple concepts
Get Experience While Keeping Your Current Job: If you are not in the position to leave your current job, you should consider ways to get time away so that you may gain legal experience. Consider the following:
- Negotiate for time such as flex
- Find flexible opportunities:
- Government organizations usually have flexible volunteer positions that may work with your busy schedule.
- Public Interest organizations also tend to have flexible opportunities and some may offer weekend hours.
Get Legal Work At Your Current Job: You should also think of creative ways of getting legal expereince in your current position. Ask to work on legal projects at your current job.
Experience over preference: It is vital to get some experience while in law school, so when looking for positions don’t focus so much on getting experience in the exact field you wish to practice in, that may be quite difficult. You should get legal experience even if it is not in your preferred field.
Law clerkships over paralegal or legal secretary positions: While legal secretary and paralegal positions will expose you to legal workplace environment and allow you to see some legal work up close, clerkships and internships are the best way to get the same assignments lawyers are given and will make you more marketable, therefore, preference should be given to these positions.