My peer mentor group attended a meeting about the path to becoming a lawyer. This was very helpful for me, as I am seriously considering going to law school after my undergraduate degree. The event speaker was Susannah Barton Tobin, who currently works at Harvard Law School. I found the event to be very enjoyable, and Tobin provided some great personal insight into the journey of becoming a lawyer, rather than just giving us the technical details. I learned that going to law school is something I should really take the time to think about and decide if it is really the right fit for me. I am someone who really enjoys academia, and a PhD allows you to delve deeply into a particular area of academia. However, I am also very eager to see myself in action, doing the work I am passionate about. Law school allows you to do serious internships during the time you are getting your degree, and the whole process takes several years less than a PhD. Law School can also be something that, for many people, ends up being a stressful and miserable experience. The bottom line is, it is not for everyone and it should not be entered into without having already done some sort of internship in the field. This means that I will probably want to do one of my co-ops at either a firm or an organization that has an important law department. Tobin also talked about the idealistic expectations she had about being a lawyer when she was younger, and how that’s not always the way things play out. For example, her life’s dream had been to work for the ACLU. The ACLU stands up for the civil liberties of all citizens, a mission that Tobin strongly identified with. She did end up working there at one point in her life, and was once given the task of defending a few members of the Ku Klux Klan. They had been distributing pamphlets throughout a town in Massachusetts, and had been stopped by police. Of course, this is in line with what the ACLU stands for- freedom of political expression. However, this was not the work Susannah had dreamed of doing when she was younger. Not every part of your career as a lawyer is going to allow you to impact the world in the positive way you want to. There are times when you have to do work you don’t entirely agree with, or that you don’t agree with at all. Since I am a person hoping to do work regrading human rights in the future, I think that is important for me to keep in mind. I have to be realistic about my career and stop myself from being completely discouraged when I cannot succeed in changing the things I care about. Tobin also talked about the different way your career can evolve throughout the years. She spent years as a court clerk and now works at the same law school she attended. There are many ways to use your degree throughout your life.