More FCLC Undergraduate Students Are Pursuing Law Degrees


Many undergraduate students pursuing law school study early for their Law School Admissions Test (LSAT). (Luke Cusumano/The Observer)

Published: October 20, 2010

As the number of students who apply to law school increases every year, undergraduates at Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) are also showing signs of an increase in applications.  According to Kaplan’s annual survey of law school admissions officers, for the year of 2010, 56 percent predict an increase in applications this year. Although Kaplan says this increase could be correlated to the economy’s recession, FCLC students expressed their opinions on why they are pursuing law school and whether or not they think this increase is due to the economy.

In order to be accepted into law school, students must take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), a half-day standardized test that occurs four times a year: February, June, October and December, according to In addition, FCLC’s Pre-Law Society Advisor, Hilary Mantis, Esq., said that the October 2009 LSATs had the highest number of registrants nationwide in its entire history.

According to the Fordham Law School’s 2010 Admissions Viewbook, the law school received a total of 8,527 applications from both day and evening applicants for the 2009 entering class.  However, only 1,908 applications were accepted.

Kaplan also said, “75 percent say the lagging effects of the recession are responsible for the recent and predicted application increases.”

Shanu Bajaj, FCLC ’13, and president of FCLC’s Pre-Law Society, said, “The Pre-Law Society is essentially a way for undergraduates to learn about law school, the pros and cons, understand the LSAT and gain knowledge about the application process.”

Bajaj is an economics major and plans to take the LSAT in October of next year. She said, “I’m planning on applying to law school my senior year. Law school is looking more and more appealing to college undergraduates as we see no improvement in the job market.”

“I have definitely noticed an uptick in pre-law activities in the last few years,” Mantis said. “Since I started as pre-law advisor in 2005, the number of appointments I have had has almost doubled.”

Mantis said that there are many pre-law types of courses mainly found in the political science department, but she said that, “[Studying law] differs perhaps from med school. Law schools value all sorts of majors and it is not necessary to major in pre-law or take pre-law course[s] unless you want to.”

Julianna Cohen, FCLC ’11, a double major in political science and history, said, “I am still undecided on whether or not I plan to attend law school… but if I do apply, the economy would not play a factor in my decision.”

“However, I know some students currently attending law school who are concerned about the poor state of the economy,” Cohen said.

In addition, Mantis said, “In recent years, I have also noticed that more students are coming to see me with non-traditional majors, including dance majors or biology majors. Since law schools do not at all require any sort of pre-law major, it is fine for them to apply.”

Maria Vasaturo, FCLC ’11, is a theology major and an Italian minor. She said, “I plan on attending law school because I plan on becoming a lawyer or being in the corporate world. A law degree can never hurt you; the education is a good investment.”

Jennifer Yoon, FCLC ’12, treasurer of the Pre-Law Society, said that she feels the economy is not the reason why she wants to apply to law school. However, she said, “The downfall of the economy has greatly impacted the field of law I want to practice.”

Yoon, a double major in political science and history, said, “I’ve always wanted to practice human rights law but after speaking to many human rights lawyers, I’ve learned that the income has decreased tremendously and they’ve advised me to go into corporate law, which I’m now considering.”