A career in media after a law degree
If you're curious and good at communicating, this one's could be you. Working as a journalist is not only socially relevant (which means you can have tremendous job satisfaction), but also carries the promise of being monetarily rewarding.
A legal education already equips you with comprehensive writing and researching skills, besides teaching you to be thorough with facts and figures. You have the option of reporting on legal issues for which you need no additional training, or on a host of other issues for which on the job learning is the best bet. The most attractive aspect about a career in journalism is that a liberal arts education is more than sufficient for this profession.
The skills one picks up at law school are more than sufficient for a journalist-what's more it's on the job learning that matters more. Indeed, employers do regularly conduct workshops for the rookies. As long as you're interested in an occupation that's socially relevant, and willing to pursue a career that is not strictly connected to the law, this is certainly a very exciting avenue to explore. As far as job satisfaction goes, if one speaks to lawyers who have taken up journalism, they say this is something that makes you feel alive, and the very fact that you're doing a service to society is something which holds tremendous satisfaction. Whether or not you mind detaching yourself from the law remains an individual choice. What is clear though is that journalism offers both challenges and rewards, and is an intellectually stimulating experience.
A word of caution is in place- it would hardly be reasonable to expect the same level of financial compensation in the field of journalism as a corporate law job or even a successful litigating practice might offer. This said, it is possible to earn more than enough to have a wholesome lifestyle. The pay scales ultimately depend upon the employing organizations.
There are two things that a law student seeking to pursue journalism must keep in mind. First, expressing ideas and opinions, or the reporting of facts that is required of a journalist is rather different from the kind of legal writing that law students are apt to be used to. A journalist must be able to convey his message in a simple yet effective and convincing manner. Towards this end, it is imperative that you rid yourself of unnecessarily complicated legal jargon and archaic language when you step into the field of journalism. This might sound difficult but it is in fact just a matter of getting out of the habit of using legalistic language in your writings. The second and more important thing to be kept in mind is that unlike the law, journalism is not a zero sum game. As a lawyer one is trained to present one side of the picture with great conviction and powerful argumentation. However, for a journalist objectivity of opinion and viewpoint is of the utmost importance. A journalist has to tell a story, not to win a case. He may have to write about grey areas and sensitive social issues-for which a story and not an argument must be constructed.
There are no prerequisites to be a journalist, and this is especially true if you are a law student. It would help however, if you make a habit of writing regularly, and may be having a publication or two (non legal ones of course). This is to ensure that you have a smooth transition from the law school to the world of journalism.
It is a well known fact that readership of newspapers and television news channels' audiences are on the rise in India. There is an increasing demand for capable journalists who have a flair for communication and a lot of curiosity. Legal education provides you with these anyways and along with that you gain a skill set that is suited to journalism. As opposed to the United States where the demand for journalists has been going down, India's journalism sector is booming. This means that there is no dearth of career avenues for those interested to take up journalism as a profession.