So the past five generations of your family weren’t judges? Then I guess you’re doomed to fail in your legal career… or not. Although ‘no successful lawyer is an island,’ being born with contacts is not a necessity. Good networking can really help your career, but as law students we’re only seeing half the picture.
Law students often come to think of networking in relation to job opportunities. To many, networking only happens at careers fairs, legal seminars and clerkship events when you’re speaking to HR representatives and partners from law firms.
But developing a diverse network of contacts is a good idea. Some students place emphasis on networking with law firms and never attend a single social event at uni. Networking can happen anywhere and anytime, and law school is the best place to connect with the bright legal minds of tomorrow. The people who are your peers now will be your colleagues tomorrow, and you never know where their careers will take them or how they could help you. Plus the successful lawyer you’ve known since you mooted together at law school is more likely to recommend you for a job than the lawyer you met once at a networking event.
The key to forming a good network at law school is to get involved. Try your hand at the client interviewing competition, go to the ALSA conference, be in the law revue or join your law student society. The best part of networking at uni is that going on the law pub crawl is now a valid form of making contacts. This student network can even pay off today. Many of my friends are already working in the law and know about job vacancies at their firms before they’re even advertised.
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