Five inspirational Law graduates

If you thought law was all about courtrooms, paperwork, and defending dubious characters, think again!

There are many options open to law graduates. These five inspirational examples show how you can get the most from a law degree.

Lead others and promote change

Former US president Barack Obama is best known for his eight-year stint in the White House. Prior to this though, he studied Law at Harvard. His career in law included several years teaching as a professor at the University of Chicago Law School.

Barack and Michelle Obama

Image by vargas2040 (Flickr) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

His law background then helped him throughout his political career. He used his critical thinking, research, and debating skills to influence changes to legislation during his time as Illinois State Senator. Later, the same skills helped his successful campaign for the presidency. He became President of the United States of America in 2008, and the rest is history.

Other inspirational leaders with law degrees include Nelson Mandela and Abraham Lincoln.

Help channel your real passion

Australian actress, writer and producer Rebel Wilson found fame with acclaimed appearances in Pitch Perfect, Bridesmaids, and Bachelorette. During the early days of her acting career, she also graduated with a Law degree from the prestigious University of New South Wales.

Rebel Wilson

Eva Rinaldi [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Although Rebel opted to forego life as a lawyer, her training hasn’t gone to waste. She used her law education to negotiate deals and contracts – a particularly useful skill for an up-and-coming star in the cut-throat entertainment industry.

Open the door to fame

TV talk show host Jerry Springer rarely hints at the Law background that helped him to where he is today.

Jerry Springer

Image by David Shankbone [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Springer graduated from Northwestern University, Chicago, and pursued a career with law firm Frost & Jacobs. The skills developed through his law training helped him land a role as an adviser to New York Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

After Kennedy’s assassination, Springer led a movement to lower the legal voting age in the US to 18, prior to the passing of the famous 26th amendment in 1971.

Springer’s legal and political influence then set him on the road to TV stardom. He took a number of related public roles, including a year as Mayor of Cincinnati, and broadcasting jobs on local TV and radio.

His (in)famous talk show followed, based on his specialist subjects of law and politics. In an attempt to boost ratings, however, the show’s content gradually became more sensationalised, and the legendary Jerry Springer show that we all know and love was born. Among the chaos, Springer’s ability to mediate, think critically, and lead debate still shine through.

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Turn your experiences into best-selling stories

John Grisham graduated with a Law degree and spent 10 years as a criminal law specialist. During a routine day in court, he witnessed a particularly harrowing case. He was inspired to write a novel, using this case as a basis and adding his own twist.

It was the follow-up book, ‘The Firm’ – a novel about a young attorney, which catapulted Grisham into the big league. It even inspired him to give up his job to become a full-time author. The book was 1991’s best-selling novel, and Grisham sold the film rights for $600,000.

John Grisham

Image by Scott Brenner [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Flickr

Since then he has published over 40 law-related best-sellers including ‘The Runaway Jury’, ‘The Summons’, and ‘The Pelican Brief’. His law education and work experience have helped establish Grisham as the master of the legal thriller.

Use your own experience to improve lives

Immigration reform advocate Jessica Dominguez arrived in America from her native Peru aged 14, with high hopes to train as a lawyer.

Difficult experiences during her early years in the US inspired her to specialise in immigration law. After graduating, she began assisting Spanish-speaking clients who were experiencing similar issues to those suffered by Dominguez herself.

Jessica Dominguez

Image by George3771 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Since establishing herself as a top immigration lawyer, Dominguez has hosted TV and radio shows, and written for high-profile news outlets. She also operates her own channels on social media – unusual in the field of law, with the aim of providing support on immigration rights.

Study Law at Bradford

These examples show how varied the career options available to law graduates are. A law degree not only gives you a strong specialist knowledge and skillset, it helps to develop a range of personal skills which can help you in almost any career situation.


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