12 Law School Resume Tips + Example


Law Student Resume Example + Writing Tips

The top law schools have time and resources to handpick the best applicants for admission. The committee will pay attention to your LSAT score, GPA, letters of recommendations, and a resume. The latter often becomes a stumbling point even for the top students. The thing is, writing a resume for law school is different from writing one for employment. You have to emphasize whole different characteristics and use a different writing style.

Whether you are looking to get accepted in Yale, Harvard, University of Chicago or other prestigious law school, you need to refine your resume so that it meets the high standards of such schools. Today, the experts of our online resume services will reveal the tips and tricks for writing a persuasive resume for your school application.

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Law student resume example

Here is a good example of a law student resume so you could get the idea of how to organize yours and what sections to include:



Why is this a good resume?

  • This resume is one page long, which is the ideal length for a student resume. It is neatly formatted, and all sections are clearly divided. Resumes with clear professional formatting have a higher chance of getting noticed.
  • In the objective statement at the top, this student lists the degree in progress and academic awards. They also list professional achievements (recruiting clients worth $150,000) and career goals.
  • This candidate briefly lists experience, quantifying their responsibilities whenever possible, which is valued by hiring managers. The education section includes school names, degrees, a GPA of 3.9, and relevant coursework.
  • This law student resume also features relevant skills, such as legal research, deductive reasoning, and business document preparation. They also mention language proficiency.

You can use a similar law student resume template, but remember to list your unique educational background, work history, and achievements that will distinguish you from the competition. Here are some pointers to help you out.

10 Tips to write a law student resume that will get you noticed

1. Use the traditional resume sections

In a law school resume, main sections are the same as in a typical job search resume (however, it doesn't mean that the content should be the same – we'll talk about it later). These must-have sections include summary of qualifications, education, experience, and awards/accomplishments. Any other sections are optional – for instance, you may wish to include a Skills section if you have valuable or rare skills that can set you apart for the committee.

2. Capitalize on your law student skills

If there's plenty of space left in your law student resume, add relevant skills. You can find the needed skills in the job description or other industry resources. The skills section can help you pass the ATS screening, as skills often work as keywords.

The exact list of skills to include depends on your specialization and the target position. Here are some skills that are nice to have:

  • critical thinking
  • customer service
  • legal research
  • criminal law
  • civil law
  • interpersonal skills
  • work ethic
  • legal documents
  • negotiation
  • MS Office
  • corporate law
  • time management

3. Highlight your academic accomplishments

What all schools pay attention to is your education section. Degrees, academic achievements, honors, scholarships, GPA, and thesis – all this adds points to your candidacy. List the degrees starting from the most advanced ones, and leave the high school information out. Include achievements such as Dean's list, honor societies, student awards and contests, and more. You might want to include some coursework (such as Federal Income Tax, International Law or Business Associations) if relevant. List accomplishments under each degree, or create a separate “Honors/Awards” section if there's plenty of them.

4. Emphasize other academic engagements

Do you have journal articles published, have you receive a grant or maybe, you were doing research work in the university and beyond? If these academic activities are relevant for your target law specialization, include them on a resume. Some schools pay attention to your academic and research background, so adding these details can influence your chance of getting admitted. If you want to achieve stellar career success, read our post where women in business share their success tips.

5. Focus on legal experience

If you already have relevant experience (for example, as an intern or an administrative assistant), leave your irrelevant summer jobs out. Expand on your legal jobs, listing both your daily duties and achievements with figures. Have zero legal experience? Consider adding academic projects, such as doing a research for your professor, participating in student organizations, or volunteering in a law office or a non-profit organization.

If you haven't had even a law internship yet, you may add one or two irrelevant jobs. Be sure to highlight transferable skills that are important for a law firm.

6. Keep the length reasonable

For students, a one-page resume will suffice. This length allows you to present professional and educational history comprehensively. Yet, if you have extensive work experience or were involved in lots of relevant student activities, go for a second page. Keep the content highly relevant, and if the second page is absolutely necessary, use it.

7. Add a law student resume objective

The objective statement is nice to have in any student's resume. It lets you introduce the highlights of your education and skills, plus it explains to employer what position you're after and how you can contribute if hired.

Remember to keep your objective to 3-4 sentences. You can add the law degree, academic achievements, and professional highlights. Don't make it all about you - instead, think about the contribution you'd like to make in the law firm.

8. Put achievements and awards above the fold

Your law student resume is supposed not only to list your degree in progress and a couple of internship. You also need to boast a few accomplishments that showcase your ability to meet the highest standards and achieve ambitious goals.

Be sure to list academic achievements, such as the Dean's List, high GPA, or a student award. If you've had internships or relevant jobs, be sure to include numbers and percentages to illustrate your contribution. If you have plenty of achievements, consider creating a separate section for them.

9. Add professional accomplishments

The descriptions of your past jobs shouldn't consist of job duties only. You also need to mention at least a few specific achievements. Instead of writing “Generated new business”, say “Increased business with existing clients by 25%”. Such specific details show your ambition and orientation on results, which is important both in the workplace and in academia. Moreover, such achievements set you apart from other applicants whose experience and education is similar to yours.

10. Attach a law student cover letter

Submitting a cover letter with your law student resume is basic etiquette. Moreover, it is a chance to express your enthusiasm and your fit for the role. Send a short-and-sweet letter expanding on your achievements in law school and the hands-on skills you've acquired on internships and entry-level position. Keep it to 3-4 sentences and absolutely relevant to the organization you are applying to.

If you're writing a resume for the first time, it will be helpful to get an external opinion about it. Send your resume to our experts, and we will critically evaluate your resume and tell what could be improved about it to maximize your chances for interview. This service is free of charge.

Tips to organize your resume

Now that you know what information to add to your law student resume, it's time to organize it effectively. Here are the formatting tips to follow:

  • Put your name and contact details at the top. Avoid fancy resume builders that place these details at the bottom or don't include them at all. The hiring manager won't spend time looking for ways to contact you.
  • Don't add personal info, such as marital status, age, ethnicity, or religious beliefs. In the US, it is considered unprofessional and will result in rejecting your application.
  • Write in bullet points. Today, presenting your projects and achievements as a bullet point list is considered a standard. Plus, bullets make your resume easier to read.
  • Use a reverse chronological order. List your degrees and jobs starting with the most recent one.
  • Include hard and soft skills. Mention job-related skills like in a sample law student resume above. Make sure to adjust the skills and all resume content for the target job ad.

How to compose a law school application resume?

Writing a law school resume is different from composing a resume for a job. You should't use the resume you use for job application to apply to a law school because they have different purpose.

When applying to law school, you don't need to impress recruiters in seconds. Law school admissions evaluate candidates thoroughly and pay attention to your overall background and values, not just the skills you have. Here are some pointers to guide you.

  • Emphasize any details that distinguish you, such as community engagement, research interests, and volunteer work in addition to you education and work history.
  • Keep it to one page. A one-page resume is a standard length for law school application. If your school has guidelines for formatting and content to include, follow them precisely.
  • Adapt to the values of your law school. All top schools have values and expectations from the prospective students. For example, some prefer admitting experienced professionals, whereas others may pay more attention to community engagements, voluntary work or athletic accomplishments. Figure out what matters most for your school – and revolve the resume content around these details.
  • Leave out irrelevant experiences. While an employer might appreciate your experience in McDonalds, admission officers wouldn't be much interested.

A resume isn't the only decisive factor for a law school committee. Yet, a thoughtfully written and well organized resume will certainly attract their attention. If you need a concise and effective resume, we can help. Our writers know the specifics of writing resumes for law schools and will help capitalize on your strengths.

Bonus: How to succeed in law school?

Your study in a law school can be an extremely rewarding experience if you approach the studying process right. To become an effective student, follow the recommendations below:

1. Read all the assigned materials

More importantly, do the reading on time. Law schools have extensive curriculum, so if you delay the reading for a week or two, you'll find it very tough to catch up with your classmates. Take notes as you read – it helps you prioritize the information and remember more.

2. Revise before class

Revise the notes you've taken as you read textbooks or during the previous lectures. This will help your brain focus even before the lecture begins. As a result, you'll feel more concentrated and involved in the discussion during the lecture.

3. Pay attention and take notes

At times, lectures can be boring. Yet, procrastinating and surfing the web isn't the most effective way to spend the lecture time. Pay attention to what the professor is saying and ask questions at once if something isn't clear. Take notes of the key concepts, books and learning strategies the tutor recommends.

4. Treat networking seriously

Studying in a law school isn't all about classes. It's also a tremendous opportunity to build your professional network early on and establish your reputation. Take your time to get to know your peers, tutors and senior students better. Once you graduate, you'll find it easier to land a job or an internship if you know many professionals in your field.

5. Stay organized

The number of classes and written assignments can overwhelm. To stay on top of everything, get a planner or use an app. Keep track of your assignments, projects, exams, and other important activities. In this case, you won't forget anything and will organize the learning process effectively.

Stand out with a professional law resume

The competition for legal jobs is tough, and having an effective resume can make all the difference. If you are not happy with the way your resume looks, entrust it to professionals. Our dedicated writers will highlight the exact qualifications that employers look for, boosting your chances to be shortlisted.

Our experienced writers can create a powerful resume suitable for each position. However, you may also request a specific resume depending on the job you are applying for, thus it will be tailored individually for your profession:

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