Choosing a Major
Law schools do not require a specific major for entrance requirements. A Bachelor's degree will be sufficient for admittance, dependent on your academic performance, LSAT score, recommendations, and other factors. You should be aware that the Department of History, Politics, and Society, has specific courses designed to familiarize students with legal history and principles and emphasizes critical thinking and expository writing skills.
Law schools desire students with a broad liberal arts education emphasizing skills in oral communication, creative and logical thinking, and writing ability. La Sierra's Pre-Law Program highly recommends four courses to cultivate those skills--Introduction to Law and related courses concerning domestic and international law, Advanced Expository Writing, and Logic. Other strongly recommended courses include Criminology, Business Law, and U.S. Constitution.
History and Political Science
If you are undecided or have a particular interest in history or sociology and/or political science the Department of History, Politics and Society can provide you with some of the following advantages and services:
The History major in particular has the goal of preparing the undergraduate student for law school. Courses in American Government, Comparative Government, and the US Constitution, among other requirements, are emphasized for the purpose of providing you with a strong foundation for your future law school experience.
A number of scholarships, for which pre-law students are eligible, are available through the Department, including the Wilfred J. Airey Pre-law Scholarship, the Gail Kendall Women's Pre-law Scholarship, and the W.C. Taft Law Scholarship.
Each year a departmental major spends a quarter as a legislative intern in Washington, D.C., working as a staff member for a US Congressperson. The Department has also placed students in state programs in Sacramento and Honalulu and in summer experience programs in the offices of both District Attorneys and Public Defenders within the Inland Empire.
4) Pre-Law Advisement:
Two advisors, one an attorney, are available to assist you with any questions or help you may seek regarding your Pre-Law program, law school admission, or the practice of law. Additionally, the instructor of the Introduction to Law course is a collaborating faculty member of the Department of History, Politics and Society, and is engaged in the full-time practice of law.
5) Resource Center:
The Department’s Resource Center (Room 325) contains a wide assortment of information sources concerning law school opportunities, including the Official Guide to US Law Schools, law school bulletins, video presentations of law school programs, LSAT information, past State Bar examination results for law schools, and other pertinent information to help you successfully plan for law school.
6) Office Experience:
If you are interested in part-time employment with a local law firm during the school year, the Department has contacts with lawyers in the Inland Empire and Orange County and has placed several students in part-time positions over the past few years.
7) The Pre-Law Club:
La Sierra University has an active Pre-law Club that organizes each year from various schools and departments across the campus. History, Business, Communications, and Psychology majors are particularly well-represented; however, a student from any major is welcome to become a member.
One of the positive features of becoming a lawyer is the ability to use your training in a wide range of occupational areas. Some examples:
director of charitable foundation
AND OF COURSE...PRACTICING CIVIL OR CRIMINAL LAW--TAKING DEPOSITIONS, TRYING CASES, AND DOING ALL THOSE THINGS WE NORMALLY ENVISION LAWYERS DOING.
For further information or advice, contact Jeffrey N. Dupée, Ph.D., J.D., Associate Professor of History, La Sierra Hall, Room 302C, (951) 785-2365