Photo by Sarah Vincii |CIGAR| Have you ever thought about where your degree is going to take you? URI has a pre-law program that will keep you on the right track for law school.
The pre-law program at the University of Rhode Island is helping to prepare students for the daunting task of going to law school.
Professor Christopher M. Parker, a pre-law advisor, suggests that pre-law at URI is an informal program, and primarily an advising service. It also provides students with internship opportunities to help them get experience. One thing that Parker does is recommend classes to students to help them decide if they want to go to law school. Parker explained that admissions officers come in the fall, and students can get inside advice and advising on the LSAT. Parker believes the pre-law program is worth it for students.
“It’s a minimal commitment, they can do as much or as little as they want,” he said. “There are some misconceptions about law school being something you do if you don’t know what else to do, but that’s not true. It’s difficult, and an important decision.”
There aren’t any specific requirements for classes for the program. Parker recommends taking classes in political science, business, sociology, philosophy, as well as English and writing classes.
Michaela McGuirl, a biology and psychology major, found the pre-law program helpful in preparing for law school. She proves that any major can go on to law school. McGuirl said that she had a late start to the pre-law program, but the advisors were very easy to get in touch with to talk about law school.
“The whole law school application process and taking the LSAT is a daunting process,” McGuirl said. “But being able to simply email professor Parker and show up for a meeting in his office was very useful and comforting to know URI provides students with these services. Especially since I was not the typical Political Science or Criminal Justice major Pre law students often choose.”
There are many law schools to choose from after graduating. Some of them include Roger Williams University School of Law, Harvard, Yale, Northeastern and many others. Parker thinks that it is possible for a URI graduate to get into a prestigious law school such as Harvard.
“Yes, it’s possible,” he said. “The biggest thing is grades, LSAT scores and a strong GPA. Places like Harvard don’t only pick students from Ivy Leagues. It will still be difficult to get into a place like that, but it is a possibility.”
On Feb. 21 at 7 p.m., Professor Emily Sack from Roger Williams University School of Law held a mock law school class in East Hall Auditorium. During the mock class, Professor Sack had the audience look at a hypothetical case and determine the correct conviction for the crime. One person in the audience got to pretend to be a prosecutor and another got to be a defendant. Sack gave the audience some general information about law school as well. She said that the homework is usually to look at a couple cases like the one in the mock class. Also, law school takes about 3 years to complete. The first year is all required classes. Sack explained that students don’t need to know what they want to be when they attend law school.
“You do not need to know what you want to be,” she said. “Overtime you develop what you want. Try to get exposed to as much as you can.”