Law as we know has various branches of specialization and in the recent years many more new fields of law have been discovered and encouraged. It is important for law to keep up with the times and hence, the various fields of law keep expanding, evolving and modifying themselves. It is impossible and unexpected for you to know about each of these fields and each of their characteristics.
A fresher in law school often faces the dilemma of choosing the field of law befitting their interest and they may find it rather intimidating and confusing to chalk-out their career path. In this article, we aim to suggest a few simple steps that can help you navigate your career path in a more structured way.
Observe your Interests
It is perfectly alright to be slow paced and take a couple of years in law school to observe where your interests truly lie. You can observe your interests through the various subjects you study, through the different internships that you do and through the multiple diverse conversations that you have while interacting with practitioners in the field of law, renowned personalities, alumnus or even your friends. Keep the curious-cat in you alive during your initial years of law school as every interaction in this professional field will have something new to contribute to your knowledge base.
It is also preferable to do different types of internships- one with a litigating counsel, maybe one with a law firm, one with an in-house, one with a judge, an NGO and others. Once you touch base with the different options available to you, you will see the practical and theoretical side to the fields of law and that will help you make a more informed choice.
Build on your Interest
Once you roughly figure out your area of interest try to build on it by getting more information around that subject area. Spare some time to research and identify specialists or accomplished lawyers in that field of law. This will help you to approach them for internships or traineeships and get a closer look into the profession. You may also read up latest articles on your chosen field of law to be more updated of current trends, amendments, position of the law and other informative aspects. Whilst building on your interest, don’t forget to ask yourself whether you are enjoying what you are working on. Every job feels mundane after a point but it gets better if you genuinely have an inclination towards that field of law as the work will then seem easier to you.
There is always a back-track
It is quite possible that you may have thought you are inclined towards a particular field of law and you attempted internships but later had a change of heart and decided otherwise. As they say always say, its better late than sorry! It is absolutely alright to take a detour and change your preferences in your later years of law school or even after you have graduated or even after some years of work experience in your chosen field. It is never late to make a shift if you realise what you’re chasing is not what you meant for. Yes, it will require you to start some things from scratch but that’s alright as the start of every journey is challenging.
Sometimes our gut may work for us and we may actually feel satisfied in our chosen field of law and sometimes the gut may go against us and we may realise that what we chose no longer resonates with us. Both the positions are a possibility and neither of them are right or wrong. It is imperative for you to try the field of law that sparks your interest so that the decisions that follow thereafter are made with no regrets.
Go full force
Once you have zeroed down on which field you want to pursue in law, chase excellence in that field with full force. Take up the additional courses required for a more refined knowledge in that field. Talk to practitioners in that field and take up work related to that practice area. Keep yourself constantly updated by reading articles and write-ups around that area of law. Apply exhaustively to reputed lawyers in your chosen field of law and keep trying until you get a good place to start your career.
It is extremely important to find yourself a place where you will be taught, where there is growth and where there is good work related to your practice area. Yes, getting yourself a job is difficult but it is not impossible if you are persistent, focused and adamant on finding yourself with the best. Thereafter, how your career takes off is entirely dependent on your hard-work, capabilities and a little bit of fate.
These are a few tips on how to advance your career in your chosen field of law. There are many ways to go about this and the strongest suggestion would be to trust your intuition. If you couple your gut feeling with a practical approach in the profession, I am certain you will find you calling and excel in your chosen field too.