Newman University is prepared to advise and assist students with adequate undergraduate programs as a preparation for certain professions. Advisors work closely with professional schools in providing the broad liberal arts education as well as the specialized courses needed that meet the requirements for admission to professional schools.
Newman University's Prelaw Program provides students with the necessary tools in a Catholic setting to gain admission into law school and succeed in law school, the legal arena and the community. The program is designed specifically to enhance a student's abilities in the areas of writing, critical thinking, and oral communication and to provide exposure to the legal profession, in the context of a university that promotes intellectual development and community service.
The Prelaw program is designed to provide students the foundation of skills and knowledge necessary to enter law school.
Prelaw students are advised to learn the admissions requirements of a law school they plan to enter and then work with the Prelaw advisors to fulfill that program at Newman University.
Courses for the Prelaw minor and courses for the student's major are delivered in the traditional classroom format.
Consultation with the prelaw advisor, for both course selection and law school application, is typically a one-on-one session for the purpose of responding to each student's unique situation.
The prelaw advisor may be the primary advisor for the student. In that case, the advisor would work with the student to plan for course enrollment for each semester. In many cases, however, students may have a primary advisor associated with the major of their choice; then, the prelaw advisor may operate as a secondary advisor, especially to help students in the selection of courses for the prelaw minor.
Possible Foundation Degrees
Prelaw students are encouraged to pursue a course of study which emphasizes skills in analysis and communication. No specific majors are recommended for admission to law school. The American Association of Law Schools and the Committee on Pre-Legal Studies strongly recommend a program of study that is liberal in content.
A wide variety of academic programs which meet all the requirements for admission to law school are available, including a variety of major areas such as:
About 73 percent of American lawyers are in private practice, most in small, one-person offices, and some in large firms. Roughly eight percent of the profession works for government agencies. About ten percent work for private industries and associations as salaried lawyers or even as managers. Approximately, 1 percent works for legal aid or as public defenders, and 1 percent work in legal education. A law school education is a good, solid background for many professions. In fact, many teachers, business people and writers working today obtained a legal education before pursuing their respective careers.
Through the years, Newman University has had a steady stream of graduates who have gone on to law school. Most of the students have chosen to continue their studies at either Washburn University or the University of Kansas while others have chosen out-of-state law schools throughout the Midwest. Many of these students have returned to the Wichita community to practice law.
The Role of the Prelaw Advisor
1. Course enrollment
The prelaw advisor recognizes that there are certain skills, values and knowledge that a student can acquire prior to law school that will provide a sound foundation for a legal education. These include analytic and problem-solving skills, critical reading abilities, writing skills, oral communication and listening abilities, general research skills, task organization and management skills, and the values of serving faithfully the interests of others while also promoting justice. The prelaw advisor will work with the student in developing an undergraduate curriculum that encompasses these valuable skills necessary to a successful legal education. The prelaw advisor may also recommend additional education opportunities and extracurricular activities that may enhance a student's abilities in one or many of these core areas.
2. Advisement for the law school application process.
The prelaw advisor will also assist the student in completing the steps required for the law school application process. This would include, among other items, preparing for and taking the LSAT, arranging reference letters, developing and writing a personal statement and submission of law school applications.
3. Facilitate exposure to law schools.
The prelaw advisor coordinates campus visits of law school representatives. In past years, representatives from University of Kansas and Washburn University have come to Newman to meet with students. In addition, the prelaw advisor will provide information about opportunities to visit law schools and encourage students to make such visits.