August is here, which means only one thing. School is back in session. Time to trade in beach balls and boogie boards for books and binders. Out are the carefree days of doing next to nothing as we move into autumn's educational onset. And while we cannot control the changing of the seasons, we can control what we choose to pursue in the months ahead.
How do you decide what to study? Where do you start? Even if you have some remote idea of a field to commit yourself to, how do you narrow it down with specifics? This is, after all, your future we're talking about.
If law is your major du jour, this quandary can be particularly perplexing. But fear not. We have five helpful hints to aid in the ominous process.
- DiscoverYour Options
You can't make a choice without knowing what you are choosing from. The main fields of law generally include civil rights, corporate, criminal, educational, employment, environmental, entertainment and sports, family and juvenile, health, immigration, intellectual property, international, real estate, and tax law. Start out by familiarizing yourself with the basics involved in each area and decide which niches might suit you.
- AssessYour Passions and Your Strengths
Both of these are key pieces in solving your schooling dilemma, and finding an area of study that you both enjoy and excel at will make a long-term career lucrative and lovable. Sometimes what you have a passion for and what you are good at aren't the same, so try to judge them independently of one another.
- ResearchWhat Each Type of Lawyer's Job Actually Looks Like
Think entertainment law is all hobnobbing with hot celebrities? Think again. Fierce competition, inconsistent work, and extensive, long contracts are the real day to day operations of an entertainment lawyer. Know what the typical nine-to-five looks like before committing to a certain specialty. A good way to discover this is by asking lawyers in the field.
Your friends, your family, your coworkers. And especially your professors. They can provide great advice and valuable insight from an unbiased perspective. They also have the added advantage of experience to draw from, having seen which students that have gone on to success. . . and which students haven't.
Yes, this is an important decision and yes, it will take time to make. Whether you have a MBA from UCLA or received a health informatics degree to set you on a path to study the legal components of healthcare, you’ll need to take your time to make this life-altering decision.
However, nothing is ever permanent and you have permission to change your major and change your mind. This is not a cut-and-dry, right-or-wrong multiple choice question like the ones you'll soon be returning to. Don't stress about making the right decision because truth be told, there isn't one.
Now go seize what's left of summer while you still can, because no matter your chosen field summer's off aren't included in any of them.