Why Study Law
What do you love about the law, Andrew?
I... many things... uh... uh... What I love the most about the law?
It's that every now and again--not often, but occasionally--you get to be a part of justice being done. That really is quite a thrill when that happens.
(Dialogue from the court scene in the motion picture Philadelphia, 1993)
Except for those fortunate ones with lawyers in the family, the rest of us grew up thinking of lawyers as black & white social outcasts chirping the occasional 'mee lord' in B-grade bollywood flicks. Most of us never even contemplated law as a career option when we made those vital decisions of picking careers. However over the last decade the popular perception of the law degree has changed dramatically. Law has become a strong and versatile career option inspired by world class law schools such as the National Law School in Bangalore and subsequently NUJS in Kolkata, NALSAR in Hyderabad, NLU in Jodhpur and NLIU in Bhopal. The older institutions such as the legendary Government Law College in Bombay and the equally famous Faculty of Law in Delhi have responded positively and pruned their curriculum to face up to the challenge. The result - the five year law degree has all the ingredients to make it a excellent career option.
Having been law students we can speak only of our own experiences and learnings. The world has leaders and it has followers. Both serve distinct but critical roles but if you go to India's best law schools then you will learn to be a leader, to bear that responsibility and discharge it faithfully. You will think beyond problems and see the solutions and you will find ways to make those solutions happen and change something for the better - yes, you will bring CHANGE. You could do this whilst standing before the Supreme Court or at the heart of the corporate world - where you are wont make you less of a leader.
Alumni of the top law schools, notably the National Law School in Bangalore, have excelled in diverse areas. They walk the corridors of the Supreme Court, the various High Courts, the top corporate law firms and business houses, agencies of the United Nations and the other stellar organizations. Alumni of these colleges even teach at leading law schools such as Oxford and Harvard. The reason why such a variety of jobs and further study options are available is the versatility of the five year law degree. Civil and criminal law are no longer the principal pillars of the five year law degree as students also study corporate and commercial law, mediation and negotiation, international law, intellectual property law, environmental law and human rights law, just to name a few disciplines. Consequently, the degree equips you, not just to be an accomplished lawyer but also a businessman, bureaucrat, diplomat, social activist or academician. Job applicants amongst the graduating batch at the National Law School this year were recruited at average annual salaries comparable to the top management schools. It goes without saying that financially the profession is hugely rewarding.
Best of luck!