Law School

8 Alternative Career Options with a Law Degree

By August 10, 2015 August 24th, 2017 No Comments
8 Alternative Career Options with a Law Degree

It is often assumed that anyone graduating with a law degree will become an attorney. However, a JD can be used as leverage to enter into a number of different professions and is not solely limited to practicing law. So, whether you’re a recent graduate seeking a job or a lawyer transitioning into a new career, be sure to explore the following options before making a decision:

  1. Legal Recruiter

Median salary: $84,211
Key Skills: training, decision-making, managing relationships, administration 

Perhaps you love working in a legal atmosphere but would prefer not to spend hours in an office working on cases. If this is true, perhaps legal recruitment would be a more satisfying career path! Legal recruitment is a branch of human resources that involves the hiring and recruiting processes of law firms. This entails everything from database management of prospective employees and interviewing at law schools to implementing effective training programs for new hires. Law school graduates are highly desired within this field, as they better understand the necessary qualities a candidate must possess to succeed within a firm.


  1. Professor

Median salary: $153,871
Key Skills: organization, planning, public speaking, evaluation

If you found yourself taking on a leadership role in the classroom during law school, becoming a law professor might be a natural next step. Law professors are responsible for the overall learning success of their students. Daily tasks include planning lectures and presentations, facilitating classroom discussions, providing resources, and assessing the quality of students’ work.  Methodical research and awareness of current events are also key to success in this area to consistently ensure that students are receiving the highest level of education possible.


  1. Lobbyist

Median salary: $102,419
Key Skills: research, communication, diplomacy, writing

Much like an attorney, a lobbyist must be familiar with political policies and act on behalf of a client to ensure that all interests are being met. Also referred to as a public affairs consultant, a lobbyist researches and evaluates upcoming legislation that can potentially impact a client, then finds ways to either support or refute it depending on whether its effects are harmful or beneficial. Common duties include writing news releases, attending conferences, maintaining relationships with client stakeholders, and giving instructional business advice.


  1. Risk Manager

Median salary: $103,570
Key Skills: negotiation, investigation, finance, loss prevention

From emergencies to disasters, there is someone in every business that must plan for the unexpected. This is the job of a risk manager, who analyzes potential risks within a company and suggests cost-savvy measures to prevent and handle them effectively. While this job is demanding and detail-oriented, its results are rewarding for both a business and individual. Easy communication of ideas, budgeting, and general knowledge of insurance policies are vital skills to performing this job successfully.


  1. Business Development Associate

Median salary: $59,713
Key Skills: managing relationships, marketing, budgeting, communication

If you prefer teamwork over individual work and enjoy communicating regularly with others, business development may be strongly suited to you. In fact, managing internal and external relationships is the primary component of this field. A business development associate is responsible for facilitating negotiations between businesses, writing and presenting proposals to clients, assisting in budget and pricing development, and reporting feedback to internal management. This job also requires the associate to balance new opportunities with outstanding ones, so multitasking, organization, and handling pressure effectively are critical components of success.


  1. Entrepreneur

Median salary: varies
Key Skills: risk analysis, creativity, business, networking

Whether it’s publishing a book about the bar exam or starting a new business, being an entrepreneur allows you to take charge of your future and make an impact in the lives of others. Take CEO Tarek Fadel for example, who began AdaptiBar in 2003 after realizing there must be a more efficient way to study for the MBE. Since then, AdaptiBar has helped thousands of bar examinees in the US as well as in more than 45 countries worldwide study for and pass the bar exam. Thus, while there is a great amount of risk-taking and commitment necessary to become an entrepreneur, the potential reward is far greater.


  1. Management Analyst

Median salary: $79,870
Key Skills: cost analysis, reporting, project management, problem-solving

Do you enjoy tackling challenges and relaying information in a way that is easy to understand? If so, consider becoming a management analyst, whose primary role is finding ways to decrease cost and increase profit within a company. Once these cost-cutting solutions are determined, the analyst presents them to the client in an easily-understandable manner that urges them to take action. A job in management analysis also requires creativity in evaluating how a business can cut corners and operate more efficiently, without negatively impacting production. Because of this, strict attention to detail is key to success.


  1. Sales Representative

Median salary: $55,780 for starters, $108,540 for managers
Key Skills: strategy, marketing, negotiation, presentation

Ranked #15 for Best Business Jobs and #61 for the 100 Best Jobs in 2015 by the U.S. News and World Report, a sales representative works on behalf of a product or service to boost revenue. From attending conferences to learn new industry trends to meeting with potential clients to discuss the benefits of business, all job components revolve around frequent communication and creating long-term connections with others. Oftentimes traveling is also required, so be sure that you are in a situation where being gone several days at a time is not an issue.

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