While attending law school and becoming a lawyer is certainly one way of working in the field, there are many other options for graduates.

Additional careers related to law include: court reporters, forensic scientists/psychologists, judges, lobbyists, law enforcement officers, legal/policy analysts, mediators, and paralegals/legal assistants.  

Industry Insights

Check out the latest Vault guides on this industry here

Sample Employers in LionSHARE

  • Paul Hastings LLP
  • McDermott Will & Emery LLP
  • Kobre & Kim LLP
  • Squire Patton Boggs
  • Proskauer Rose
  • Ropes & Gray

Focus areas in Law

Here is a sample list of applied areas in this industry: 

Government, Policy,  and Intelligence

Students interested in Law may also be interested in working for organizations such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Central Intelligence Agency, or United Nations. The process for applying to positions to these agencies can be time intensive, so you want to start the process early (i.e. 9 months prior to when you would like to start).

Smaller and midsized firms, as well as many government agencies and non-profits, will hire on an as-needed basis, meaning that they are typically looking for applicants to can begin work immediately. As with most fields, networking is key to securing a position, and research is essential to find firms, organizations, and agencies that are a match for your interests. 

Columbia University Resources

  • The Office of Preprofessional Advising helps Columbia College and Columbia Engineering students and alumni identify and refine their interests in professional school, including law. The office hosts a listserv with information and opportunities as well as online resources.
  • The School of General Studies offers current students and alumni the opportunity to meet with a pre-law advisor for questions regarding the law school admissions process. The website has information about upcoming events and online resources.
  • LionSHARE - Under the job search tab, try keyword searching the words ‘law’ or ‘legal’ or select ‘law,’ ‘legal services,’ or ‘government’ in the employer industry menu. Examples of organizations that have recruited through LionSHARE for legal positions include Lawyers Alliance for New York, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, and the British Embassy.         
  • CCE Career Fairs and networking events - Highlights of past participants include: Kobre & Kim LLP, Ropes & Gray, The United Nations, US Department of State, New York District Attorney, and Legal Momentum.
  • Student organizations including the Columbia Undergraduate Law Review
  • The Division of Government Affairs serves as a liaison between Columbia and government at the federal, state, and city levels. As a service to Columbia and Barnard students, the Columbia University Office of Government and Community Affairs provides assistance to undergraduates interested in spending the summer interning in either the local or Washington, DC office of a United States Congressperson.
  • Vault is an excellent career resource for industries and organizations. 
  • If you’re considering attending law school, review our tip sheet on factors to consider and resources.

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