Okay, I'll bite here as well.I think that what everyone is trying to get at here is that planning your college experience around goals that are so far down the line is unwise for a number of reasons, the most obvious being that you might change your mind before you get out of school.It's great that you have strong interests right now, but probably the most beneficial thing in terms of your future to do with them is to try and dip your toe into those fields. Instead of thinking about how you can get to a fancy law school or become a politician, spend college interning at a law firm, or better, for a political campaign. There are SOOO many jobs in politics that do not require a law degree, and not every politician has one, either. Not only will you not be locked into a career path already if you find you don't like these fields, but this will also help build your resume, which will be useful whether you apply to law school or decide to go into another field.I don't know how other schools work, since I went to a small liberal arts school, but trust me -- you don't need to definitively declare a major as a freshman. And in terms of recommendations/relationships with professors, it's much better to find professors who are known among the student body for being "good" professors than to take classes with profs who are famous. A great rec from someone that an adcomm has never heard of is far, far better than a mediocre one from someone famous.
First of all, you can disregard a lot of these comments because I can tell that you're smart and ambitious. I was sitting in your place only a few years ago, and, God willing, I'll be attending one of those shiny "top" law schools in the fall. (Hint: Hyde Park.) When I was your age, I had a feeling that a legal career would be right for me. Was my gut feeling correct? Possibly not. But I'm going with my intuition and my perception of my aptitudes. I've tried to be a poet, a guitarist, a music critic, and, now, I want to be a top-flight clerk, helping an important judge draft opinions. Will it happen? I hope so, but possibly (even probably) not. The important thing, however, is that you have a dream, which you can always modify in a way commensurate with the realities of your future situation. Don't let anyone tell you that it's too early to start planning, because the early-planners are usually the most ready to capitalize on the system. While all of your friends will be disregarding that minor "F" they received in a PolSci class they forgot to drop, you'll know that such a mark will be a scarlet letter on any LS applications, jeopardizing your acceptance to a top school. (LSAC averages all of your grades, including community college courses, which means that two "F"s from Harper could sink your application.)Now, to answer your questions:1) If you're set on law school, major in a subject which will produce the highest GPA and reduce your debt load as much as possible. The double major sounds frivolous unless you're set on Academia. Even in the real world, few employers will care about whether you studied Religion in addition to, say, Mathematics. They'll judge your interview and your pedigree -- regardless of GPA in some cases. Since you're living in, presumably, Chicago, it's best to go state: UIC or Urbana-Champaign will open a lot of local doors without the hefty price tag of the expensive private schools. I have a friend at the latter school who loves it. FYI, I studied a discipline which I deeply loved, and my GPA reflected that passion.2) Start thinking about the LSAT. I can tell that you're done some preliminary research since you've mentioned that crucible of entrance tests, but delve deeper into the exam. Take a diagnostic. Look at the sections and ask yourself whether you can excel at them, or whether you're willing to put forth the effort to do so. Above all, Law Schools look at your GPA and LSAT. That's it. I'm not kidding. A high GPA and a high LSAT score will ensure an acceptance at a top school. A 3.8 GPA from UIC and a 172 on the LSAT will probably send you to Georgetown with a scholarship. Law School admissions is mostly a numbers-game.Good luck, and feel free to send me a private message if you have any questions.
Hi. I am a junior in high school and have been looking around the internet for some college advice for law-school bound students, and I came across these message boards. I'm hoping to get some questions answered so here goes nothing...I currently plan on going into law and practicing for a certain amount of time before possibly going into politics. With this being the case, my question is which undergraduate major would be the best idea for me? I assume political science, but I guess you never know.Furthermore, what is the advice on double-majoring while getting an undergraduate degree with the plan to go into law school? I ask this because I have a keen interest in history (primarily U.S.) as well as politics, and if the legal field did not work out I would highly consider going into teaching at the high school level and history would be the most likely course. I have a feeling you guys are going to suggest not double majoring so that I have time to study for the LSAT, and if that's the case, then it brings me to my next question...In my situation, would you suggest majoring in history or political science? I am as sure as I can be (at this point, anyway) that I want to go into politics at some point. Also, if not a double major what would your opinion be on major/minor combo? Same feeling about the time-constraint on this one?...I am very highly ranked in an extremely competitive and deep high school class but will probably not get as high of a score on the ACT to get into one of the upper-tier undergraduate schools. Right now my considerations are DePaul (for a more moderate workload and better chance of finishing high on the GPA and class rank scale) and Loyola Chicago (which, if I'm not mistaken, has a highly acclaimed history program correct?).I have hopes of getting into a top-tier law school which is why I want to ensure that I will do well in my four-year school. By top-tier I was thinking along the lines of Colombia, Georgetown, and possibly some lower-tier ivy league schools as my "dream." That is my goal, although I would settle for some more realistic possibilities as well for law school.Anyways, now that you know my life plan, I'm interested to see some of the answers to my question, and thanks for reading this post (sorry for the length).