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Becoming a lawyer - Need a lot of advice

 
 
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 06:50 am
Hello,

With respect to you all, i need advice and suggestions to improve my english. I can read, write and do every other thing that an average person does, but that's not what i am aiming at. I want to be a lawyer when i grow up. I am 17 years old and second last year in my high school period. Now that i have decided to be what i want to pursue in life. I have this animosity that my english isn't as good as it needs to be to get in law school. I want to excel in every academic manner. That is by improving my english drastically.

I've heard that by reading complex texts and the newspaper i can develope and nurture this skill but the thing is how can i read complicated texts if i can't understand what they are trying to convey. Newspapers i can understand but there are a few words i don't understand. I need a pathway on how i can improve my english. I want to reach a higher plateau and really want to put my english to a level where i feel good about it and right now i don't. So please i need advice from you folks on what should i do that will help me read, write, better vocabulary, analyze and understand the english language much better so i can be a great lawyer. My english isn't mediocre but i want to get much better. I hope its not too late!

I was also wondering what courses should i take in Grade 12 that will help me in university, as well as law school. I don't want to take redundant courses. I read numerous amounts of topics and i still have one question that i want to fathom. Being in top law schools means that i have the scores to attend this law school but what i am perplexed at is what if i am not top 25 or suppose even top 50 in the school, will it make it of no use to go to the school and get a job in big, respected firms; as suppose to attending a mediocre law school and getting good marks but still not top 10. What are the chances of getting jobs in big firms with a respected salary. Is it better to try getting admission in a good law school or an mediocre law school. Please clarify.

Lastly,
I was planning to majoring in philosophy but i have no clue what philosophy is. Is philosophy a really hard course in university? I don't want to take a extremely hard subject that perils my GPA. I want a good GPA as well as a high LSAT. Is philosophy that hard of a subject. I am going to be taking philosophy in grade 12 for the first time. If there is any other course that will help me prepare for law school and LSAT and is easier than philosophy please spin away! Smile

please how should i go about doing this. I need all your suggestions.
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy


Thank-you for your reading
PS: I am most probably going to be practicing law in Toronto, Canada . Is it still possible to have a law degree from Toronto and practice law in like New York city or other major cities in the US?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 2 • Views: 8,183 • Replies: 32
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 07:11 am
Quote:
I was planning to majoring in philosophy but i have no clue what philosophy is.


yas_futurelaw - Really! Shocked

It sounds to be that you need to do a lot more exploring before you decide on your future career. If you think that you are interested in law, take as many courses as you can in history, governement, and English.

I don't know the laws in Canada, but in the US, you need to go to college before you enter law school. I would suggest that when you do go to college you also take as many of the courses that I have mentioned above.

Give yourself a chance. It seems to me that you are nowhere near ready to make a decision that will afffect your entire life. Just keep exploring, and good luck!


http://www.lawschoolbound.net/NN/becoming_a_lawyer.htm#canada
0 Replies
 
yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 10:10 am
Phoenix32890 wrote:
Quote:
I was planning to majoring in philosophy but i have no clue what philosophy is.


yas_futurelaw - Really! Shocked

It sounds to be that you need to do a lot more exploring before you decide on your future career. If you think that you are interested in law, take as many courses as you can in history, governement, and English.

I don't know the laws in Canada, but in the US, you need to go to college before you enter law school. I would suggest that when you do go to college you also take as many of the courses that I have mentioned above.

Give yourself a chance. It seems to me that you are nowhere near ready to make a decision that will afffect your entire life. Just keep exploring, and good luck!


http://www.lawschoolbound.net/NN/becoming_a_lawyer.htm#canada
Haha Phoenix,

Why the bewildered look? I have spent almost 9 months on in depth research about law. I have went to every single webpage that deals with the information for how to get into law. I read and read, different sites tell me me distinguished information. I do know quite a bit about getting into law, subjects that would be help ful, day in a life of a lawyer etc.. and all the little bits too. I'm whole heartedly determined to be a lawyer, but after your post i'm a bit bemused. Next year will be my last high school academic year and after tremendous and aggravating amount of research i decided i will pursue my career in law. I am very weak in math so my chances of engineering or anything close to math is vanished. I don't want to take a field in science because i just think its too dull. To me lawyer seems to be the most interesting, sophisticated (The high fly suit LOL Smile ) and well-respected job out there. I honestly want to adhere to law and now that i have decided i need all you lawyers and everyone with the slightest information that would help me achieve my goal, i would be so forever grateful.

If you can tell me more, that would be avid.

(I honestly don't mind getting hit hard by reality. Give me all your suggestions, doesn't matter how remorseless it is.)

Thank-you

PS - I do know a little bit about philosophy, its about ethics , culture, the way of life from early ages to modernity. Thats all i know Smile. Is philosophy really that hard? Since i am in high school, is there anything i should have learned by now that is necessary for law and/or even university. My english isnt high fly but im trying hard! Smile
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 12:56 pm
yas_futurelaw wrote:
I honestly want to adhere to law and now that i have decided i need all you lawyers and everyone with the slightest information that would help me achieve my goal, i would be so forever grateful.

If you can tell me more, that would be avid.

First of all, you might want to learn the meaning of the words that you use -- words such as "adhere," "animosity," and "avid" (and that's just the A's) -- so that you avoid misusing them.

yas_futurelaw wrote:
PS - I do know a little bit about philosophy, its about ethics , culture, the way of life from early ages to modernity. Thats all i know Smile. Is philosophy really that hard? Since i am in high school, is there anything i should have learned by now that is necessary for law and/or even university. My english isnt high fly but im trying hard! Smile

You'll learn about philosophy in college; no need to study anything in high school, apart from some advanced English and History classes. If you're really eager, you might try an introductory text, like Philosophy for Dummies.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 06:31 pm
Must you put me down Very Happy . What seems to be wrong with the words that i have acquainted. Is there something wrong with it? I'm pretty sure those words with context are right. If wrong please do correct me so i don't make these mistakes again. Thanks.

I am sure that i used the word 'adhere' properly in context as well as 'animosity'. Avid which means eager or to be enthusiastic (Without looking at the dictionary Surprised ) thats is what i was trying to imply.

So i'm pretty sure that what i said isn't rhetoric. Correct me if i'm wrong. Please do
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joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Nov, 2004 09:04 pm
yas_futurelaw wrote:
Must you put me down

You asked for advice, "no matter how remorseless." And now you complain about being put down? You'll have to develop a thicker skin than that if you want to be a lawyer.

yas_futurelaw wrote:
I am sure that i used the word 'adhere' properly in context as well as 'animosity'. Avid which means eager or to be enthusiastic (Without looking at the dictionary Surprised ) thats is what i was trying to imply.

Indeed, avid means eager or enthusiastic. Which is why the phrase "that would be avid" makes no sense. It's like saying "that would be eager."

yas_futurelaw wrote:
So i'm pretty sure that what i said isn't rhetoric. Correct me if i'm wrong. Please do

Rolling Eyes

"I have this animosity that my english isn't as good as it needs to be ..."
"Animosity" means hatred or enmity. You meant to say something like "inkling" or "feeling."

" I honestly want to adhere to law..."
"Adhere" means to "stick to." Although it can also mean "to follow closely" (as in "they adhered to the ruling party"), it makes little sense here. You don't want to follow the law, you want to practice it.

And, as a bonus: "So i'm pretty sure that what i said isn't rhetoric."
"Rhetoric" is either the study of speech, or else an affected or grandiloquent kind of speaking. It does not, however, relate to a particular choice of words.

If you are serious about improving your English, I encourage you to visit the English board on A2K.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 02:19 am
I really appreciate what you just said. Learned from my mistakes and will not make it twice. I was just kidding when i said "Must you put me down". Do you have anymore suggestions for me. Honestly tell me is my english that bad joe. And does that mean i cannot practice law because of my english. How can i improve this.
0 Replies
 
Debra Law
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 02:35 am
English
yas_futurelaw wrote:
I really appreciate what you just said. Learned from my mistakes and will not make it twice. I was just kidding when i said "Must you put me down". Do you have anymore suggestions for me. Honestly tell me is my english that bad joe. And does that mean i cannot practice law because of my english. How can i improve this.


You are still in high school. There is plenty of time to learn. Keep your sentence structure simple. Make sure you use parallel construction. Don't use modifiers, or don't overuse modifiers. Be concise. Omit needless words.

For instance, you wrote: "I really appreciate what you just said."

You can reduce this seven word sentence down to four words.

Rewrite: "I appreciate your comments."
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 03:55 am
So it isnt too late i presume? Yes i am still in high school, but honestly can you tell me in high school standards if my english is good? I really appriciate you comments on this matter. I am really eager (avid Smile ) to practice law and i just feel that i have to get much better in my language. I have started reading the newspaper, im not much into novels but is there anything else that you can suggest to me, perhaps and internet site or anything at all that will be useful and helpful.
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 05:48 am
Lawyers work in many different aspects of law. There is criminal law, business law, divorce law, and many others. All lawyers need to be able to write well in English, and communicate well with clients. If you plan on becoming some kind of trial lawyer, you especially need to sharpen up your spoken English.

Have you thought about what kind of a lawyer you would want to be? For instance, if you are interested in business law, you might want to take some business courses in college. A wise person who wants to work in business, might want to pick up an MBA in addition to a JD.

Also, check out the colleges that you are considering attending. See if they have a pre-law program, and note which courses that are required. Ask them to send you a catalog. Read them. If there are courses in high school that are related to something that is offered in a pre-law prigram, take it.

What I am saying, is that in the last year of high school, there is a tendency for students to take "crap courses".........easy stuff that will get you out of school, but won't do anything for your proposed career. Don't make that mistake. Use your high school years to prepare yourself for the tougher courses that you will encounter in college.


http://www.campusaccess.com/campus_web/educ/e4grad_lacan.htm

Apparently, in Canada, the important thing to get into law school is your grade point average in college, and your LSAT scores. It would not be a bad idea for you to pick up an LSAT book, and look through it, to get an idea of the skills that are needed to do well on the test, and then take courses in HS and college that would improve those skills.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 06:45 am
Yes, i acknowledge. But phoenix what the problem is that i am not good at Math at all. Currently i am not even doing the academic math course, i am doing core maths which is a simplar math course. I presume that to get MBA you need to have mathematics.

And yes, i am going to be practicing corporate law (99%). That seems to be the most intriguing, and if in future, I want to become an entrepeneur that would help a lot. I was thinking hard on taking MBA and JD but, I have no background information on business, account and economics but, planning to taking these courses in my last year. The reason i am intrested in practicing law is because it requires very little math, and since thats my weakest subject i dont intend to pursue a career that requires math.

Right now, these are the following subjects i most probably will be taking:

Philosophy
English
History
Anthropology
Literature
Canadian Law
Grade 11. Business (Could be even grade 10 depending which teaches introductory)
Grade 11. Accounting

If you have any suggestions or compliments, please don't hesitate.



PS: Currently i am studing under the british board. Next year i am going to be moving to the canadian system.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 07:23 am
Quote:
The reason i am intrested in practicing law is because it requires very little math, and since thats my weakest subject i dont intend to pursue a career that requires math.


yas_futurelaw- I think that you need to look at the sentence that you wrote, and attempt to assess your own motivations. I don't hear you saying anything about that you love the law, or anything like that. Apparently, your prime motivation, is that the law does not require math, which is not a good reason for choosing the field. There are many other careers that don't need math.

As far a corporate law goes, you centainly have to have a nodding acquaintance with balance sheets, and statistics, in order to do a good job for your clients.

Is there a career counselor in your school? There are aptitude, achievement and interests tests that can be taken. These tests can point out your strengths, and then match them with careers that utilize the strengths that you have.

If your high school does not give them, often the counselling center of a university will have psychologists who are competent to administer and analyze those tests. There will probably be a cost for you take these tests, but in the long run, knowing that you are going in the right direction will save you a lot of grief later on.

I think that before you jump into something, you really need to get a sense of both what you want to do in life, and which of your strengths match up with what profession. Think about it.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:14 am
phoenix, i am very much interested in law. I was planning to do law since i was young. Math just became a problem for me after Grade 10 when i realised i wasn't so good at it. Lawyer is something i always wanted to be but isn't it a plus that i don't need exceptional math skills? I am telling you, i spent daily reading 'anything' related to law. I read interviews, day in life, admission criteria etc. I have read every single website that talks about Law.

Yes by looking at my statement i can see how you came to a conclusion on my interest in law. I didn't mean that. Just because Law requires no or little math, that was no reason i chose it to be my future career. It's what interests me. I prefer it over medicine, engineering and just about anything else. You have no idea how determined i am Smile .

Enough about my intuitions about law. Phoenix i want to ask you, while you posted your comments on suggesting to take an MBA and JD degree, i spent the last couple of hours researching about this. I understand that i need to take GMAT test along with TOEFEL. And its a 4 or 5 year course depending on which university i apply to.

What i want to ask you is:

Do you think i need extensive knowledge in mathematics. Maths is alright with me but i cannot handle heavy loads of it since its my weakest subjects. What courses do you suggest i take in high school to help me in business along with courses to help me in Law as well. << Most important question (is extensive knowledge of math needed to be successful in getting my MBA degree or even in business). I am not week in all areas of math but i am sure if i take courses i can do it. I dont like maths, and that maybe the reason i do bad on it. ( Or my teachers just suck )



Second question, is it possible to have a JD degree and then go to another university and pursue to get an MBA degree elsewhere?

Does MBA involve intensive use maths, i searched on websites and it doesn't tell me a lot. Information is limited and not concise. I hope you can answer these questions for me.

By the way i REALLY appreciate your time replying to my posts phoenix. I may still be a teenager but my heart is really set on becoming a lawyer.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:37 am
Quote:
What courses do you suggest i take in high school along with courses to help me in Law as well.


I think that I mentioned this before. Take English writing courses, public speaking courses and courses in history and government.

Here is a list of Universities in Ontario. There are a lot of good links, including ways to prepare for the GMAT & TOEFL.


http://www.allaboutcollege.com/colleges/canada/ontario.htm

Quote:
Second question, is it possible to have a JD degree and then go to another university and pursue to get an MBA degree elsewhere?


Sure it is, but I do believe that there are some graduate programs which include both. Why make it more difficult (and expensive) for yourself?

Quote:
Does MBA involve maths, i searched on websites and it doesn't tell me a lot. Information is limited and not concise. I hope you can answer these questions for me.


I said this before. Contact some colleges that you might be considering, ask them to send you a catalog, and check out the various course requirements. Each school has somewhat different mandatory courses, so you would be wise to look into the differences. Certainly, without even looking, I could say that you would not need to take math for a law degree at the same level that you would need, if you were studying to be a chemist, or an engineer.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:46 am
Yes, i saw your earlier post regarding what subjects to take. What i was trying to imply is aside from those courses, should i take any other courses that will help me with mba, or business as a whole ( in high school).

Quote:
Certainly, without even looking, I could say that you would not need to take math for a law degree


What about for an MBA degree?
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cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:49 am
Hi yas, welcome. I'm just piping in here because I have lawyers in the family, in Toronto. If you stick around long enough, and do decide to move here to study law, I might have some contacts for you, but you are years away. The LSATs comprise of four sections: analytical reasoning, logical reasoning, reading comprehension, and a writing sample. In addition, there is an 'experimental' component, which you won't know until you take the test. It could be from any of the other categories. If you want a neat link, check this out: http://www.soyouwanna.com/site/syws/acelsat/acelsat.html If you study and take the bar in Toronto, you will only be able to practice in Toronto. To practice in another city, I believe you need to pass the bar exams in that city before being issued a licence. The lawyers here can correct me if I'm wrong. Keep at it, and keep us informed.
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cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:51 am
Oh, for an MBA degree, you would definitely need math, and a good grounding in accounting and book keeping.
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:53 am
Quote:
Certainly, without even looking, I could say that you would not need to take math for a law degree at the same level that you would need, if you were studying to be a chemist, or an engineer.


Wow! Maybe you should be a lawyer. You took my quote COMPLETELY out of context. What I highlighted in red is the end of my sentence. The black was what you quoted.
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yas futurelaw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:53 am
Hey cav! Thanks for your responce. If you don't mind me asking, what kind of lawyers are they? I am most probably going to take Corporate law and follow it up with and MBA degree but i am looking into it to find out if math is something in need. Not so good at it Laughing . Any advice from you cav regarding what subjects to take aswell in high school for my last year. More suggestions i have, the merrier it is.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Nov, 2004 08:54 am
Phoenix32890 wrote:
Certainly, without even looking, I could say that you would not need to take math for a law degree at the same level that you would need, if you were studying to be a chemist, or an engineer.


Wow! Maybe you should be a lawyer. You took my quote COMPLETELY out of context. What I highlighted in red is the end of my sentence. The black was what you quoted.
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