Public Interest Lawyers Trade Money and Prestige For Passion and Conscience
The vast majority of graduates from top notch law schools such as Harvard and NYU land jobs at major law firms with perhaps a year or two spent at a prestigious clerkship. For those who buck the trend and pursue a career in public interest law, there is the struggle of making do financially on a meager salary (while paying down often astronomical law school debt) and dispelling the notion often held by peers that they weren't bright or ambitious enough to land a high-paying job at a big law firm (interesting stat - while 50% of the students entering Harvard Law say they want to go into public service work, only 5% end up actually doing so).
The law.com recently shared the stories of two Harvard Law grads -- Lori Wallach and Linda Singer -- who pursued careers in public interest law (Wallach in the area of global trade, and Singer in legal aid and then as executive director of the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit Appleseed, which operates a pro bono network).
For lawyers at large firms considering a move to public service work they may find more meaningful, it's a helpful read.
Click here to read the full article on law.com.