5 Volunteer Opportunities For Law Students
- Running A Publication
- Organizing Charity Work
- Volunteer At A Law Office
- Speech and Debate
In order to get into law school, students should pursue law-related volunteer opportunities. Volunteer work looks very good on a law school application and will also be beneficial for professional job applications later. Here are five opportunities prospective law students should consider.
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1. Running A Publication
The ability to write well and on tight deadlines is integral to being a legal professional of any sort. Working as volunteer staff on any kind of publication will improve key writing skills that will be very important both in school and as a professional attorney. Students may be able to show samples of their work to employers in order to demonstrate their writing ability during the hiring process. Writing for a publication may also utilize research skills, which are also heavily used by legal professionals.
2. Organizing Charity Work
Charity work can be anything. Students can volunteer to spearhead a food drive, build homeless shelters and perform other community-focused tasks. Organizing charitable work not only demonstrates leadership ability and drive but also shows a compassion for the needy. This is an important trait for lawyers because they will typically do pro bono work throughout the rest of their careers. Because of this, charity work of any kind looks good on a legal resume. Students should be sure to treat their volunteer experience like work experience on a resume because employers do consider it.
3. Volunteer At A Law Office
This may not always be possible, but perhaps the best law-related volunteer opportunities are to be had at a law office. Some law offices will accept the help of volunteers and volunteer work at a law firm will look excellent on a resume for any legal job. Students who have an interest in a particular area of law can focus on volunteering at firms specializing in that type of law. Volunteer work can also help students decide what law specialization they may be interested in pursuing without committing to a field of study or professional employment at a law firm.
4. Speech And Debate
Like with writing, strong public speaking ability is a necessity for lawyers. Even for law students who do not want to be lawyers, good oral communications skills are essential to the legal profession. Lawyers must be able to effectively argue a case before a jury and have strong persuasive speaking skills. They also must be able to effectively communicate with clients and witnesses to get the right information from interviews. Being captain on a speech and debate team also showcases leadership skills that are desired by most employers, no matter the industry.
CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates. CASA is a national organization of volunteers who advocate on behalf of children going through the court system for any reason. Volunteers get to know the children and the circumstances of their lives and advocate for what is best for the child in the courts. Anyone who meets CASA's criteria can be an advocate. Prospective volunteers need to complete a training course and pass a background check according to CASA. This is an excellent volunteer opportunity to learn the workings of the court as well as help children in need.
Future legal professionals should get comfortable with volunteer work. It helps secure a job and it is good practice for doing pro bono work later as a licensed attorney. Law-related volunteer opportunities can help students get into law school and land jobs afterward.