KIPPsters in every grade at KIPP Colorado Schools spend a lot of time preparing for their future, whether it’s college, a career, or a life filled with choice.
On Wednesday, our KIPP Through College (KTC) team brought together a group of KIPP Denver Collegiate High School juniors and seniors interested in law and a legal education to hear representatives—one student and one staff member—from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law discuss the many rewards and challenges of making it to and through law school.
Randy Wagner, Administrative Director for Strategic Initiatives at DU Law, and Laura Lopez, a third year law student, spoke for an hour about their paths through law school, and the many different careers that a legal education can make possible.
Speaking about the challenge of affording law school, Ms. Lopez encouraged the students to treat the search for scholarships like a job.
“If you apply to 20, 30, 40 places, and only one of them gives you a scholarship—and you think, man, I spent 40 hours—a full work week—applying for scholarships and only got a thousand dollars, well you just made a thousand dollars in a 40-hour workweek,” she said. “That’s how you’ve got to think about these things. Think about it from a work perspective, if that’s what’s going to motivate you.”
Asked about what kind of path students should take in college, Mr. Wagner noted that there are many undergraduate majors that can lead to law school, but that grades and test scores are extremely important.
“Getting into college and getting good grades are super important,” he said. “Standardized tests—like it or not—are very important to law schools. You need to take those very seriously, and spend time preparing for them. Anything you can do for your writing, speaking, and listening skills will be really, really important for preparing for law school.”
KIPPsters also asked the pair about issues like learning how to network, opportunities for minority and LGBTQ work in the legal field, and the best type of internships and jobs to seek out before going to law school.
Students who are interested in law school will have another opportunity to learn more about law school when KTC visits the DU Law campus later this year.