But click here to read more about networking first.
A great many UMass Amherst students considering legal careers don’t know any lawyers personally—none in the family, no family friends, really no one to connect with in the field in order to learn more about the profession.
A great many lawyers who are alumni of UMass Amherst are eager to connect with undergrads considering legal careers, in order to give them a leg up into the profession. Their UMass loyalty is strong, and often stronger than the loyalty many alums feel to their respective law schools.
From this twin set of circumstances was born the UMass Lawyer-Alumni Pre-Law Network.
The most straightforward aspect of the Network is the LinkedIn group reserved for UMass students and alums considering law school or who are lawyers themselves. Join the network, and then use it as a means to connect with like-minded lawyers and students.
- For pre-law students and alums: ask questions about particular fields and practice settings, connect with individuals to request informational interviews, talk to law students about their current schools, look for job postings directed specifically at UMass students, and even touch base with other law school applicants about test prep or other matters.
- For law students: Network with practicing attorneys, find other UMass alums at your own school, and share your experiences and growing expertise with those considering law school.
- For lawyers: Network with other UMass alums in the legal profession, find UMass alums for internships and jobs, and share your expertise and experiences with undergrads and alums considering legal careers. Also feel free to highlight recent career achievements or awards (or email me and I’ll do it for you—I’m always happy to brag about our alums!).
If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile yet, now is the time to set one up. Remember: Facebook is for play, LinkedIn is for work—your profile should be professional, an online resume of sorts. Make sure your interactions on LinkedIn are professional as well. If you have a Twitter account, blog or any other service that might feed automatically into LinkedIn, either disable the automatic feed or keep in mind that your LinkedIn connections can see those posts as well.
Legal Career Talks
The Pre-Law Advising Office is always happy to welcome lawyer-alums to campus for informal get-togethers with students, our popular speed-networking events, or formal panels on particular areas of law or practice settings, or even on job prep tips (how to interview, etc.). Just let me know when you are planning a visit, and we will try to set something up.
Guest posts on the Pre-Law blog
The Pre-Law Advising blog is an increasingly popular source of information for students and alums about legal education, legal careers and the law school application process—and because it feeds into the Facebook page and LinkedIn groups, each post gets hundreds of views. Alums in law school and in practice have written posts for the blog, and you are encouraged to submit one as well.
Other ways to connect
The Pre-Law Advising Office is always looking for new ways to connect UMass alums interested in or already working in the legal profession. If you have more ideas, please don’t hesitate to forward a suggestion.
What is networking? In essence, it’s being friendly with a purpose. If that sounds crass to you, then, to be blunt, you might want to rethink a career that is based largely on building and maintaining strategic professional relationships. Lawyers can’t adequately represent their clients or...read more »