Pre-Law Timeline - Freshman Year

Freshmen Year

  • Focus on completing your general education requirements.
  • Since your GPA is cumulative and an important component of the law school admissions criteria, work hard to excel in your courses. Remember that if you are applying to law school during your senior year, the law school admissions office will be looking at your grades from Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior years.
  • Introduce yourself to the Pre-Law advisor and place your name on the pre-law e-mailing list by seeing the office coordinator for Politics and International Relations Department.
  • Set a goal of getting to know one professor well each academic year so that at the end of three or four years you have three or four professors who can write letters of recommendation for law school or provide references for internships or jobs. A professor who you and your abilities and accomplishments will be in a better position to provide a meaningful letter of recommendation or reference. You can accomplish this goal by making the effort to schedule meetings with professors during office hours, taking advantage of Dine-with-a-Mind lunch program, becoming a teaching assistant. or seeking ways to work and collaborate with professors on their research projects.
  • Begin developing a portfolio of your best papers and projects that can be used as writing samples for job and internships and to assist professors in writing letters of recommendation and references.
  • Begin exploring the legal profession. Use family, church, and community connections to get names of attorneys in different practice areas. Use the time during breaks and vacations to conduct informational interviews with these attorneys, to "shadow" them for a day or a week, or to work as an intern in their office.
  • Pray for discernment about God's calling for your life and the wisdom to make choices to fulfill this call. Explore the gifts God has given you.
  • Join a campus group or organization both to provide a source of social and personal support and to make your law school application more interesting. For the purpose of your law school application, the quality rather than the quantity of extracurricular activities matters.
  • Become involved in the mock trial program and attend law-related programs on campus.