Gut Check Before You Send In Your Law School Deposit

Before you sign on any dotted lines and send in your deposit to go to law school, remind yourself that you DO NOT HAVE TO GO.

DO go to law school if you want to be a lawyer (based on what knowledge?), and you are going to a school — and at a price point — that sets you up to reach your goals. Do you know what your goals are? Do you know why you're going? Are you going to hit the ground running from Day 1? If not, don't go.

DON'T go because your parents want you to.

DON'T go because you think a law school diploma will somehow validate you as a smart person.

DON'T go because you think law school—even a top law school—is a safe bet. It's not.

DON'T go into debt for law school just because you can.

You're looking at the offers in front of you, and you're feeling really good. You should. And now is the time to reassess those options and decide whether they still make sense for you. Keep your head screwed on straight.

Former Dean of Admissions at the University of Chicago Law School and a recovering lawyer, Anna Ivey founded Ivey Consulting to help college, law school, and MBA applicants navigate the admissions process. Read more admissions tips in The Ivey Guide to Law School Admissions, recently updated and available as an e-book. Follow Anna on Twitter (@annaivey).