Where an LL.M. Degree Can Take You

by: Rachael Perrotta

When people think of law school, they often think of students pursuing a J.D. An LL.M. degree, however, is another important program that institutions like Vanderbilt Law School offer. LL.M. degrees, also known as Master of Laws degrees, provide attorneys with the opportunity to gain additional specialized legal knowledge. Vanderbilt Law School’s LL.M. program specifically focuses on providing students who earned law degrees in different countries with a solid foundation in American law. Over a year of study, attorneys from all over the world come together to learn the complexities of U.S. legal theory from some of the country’s most prominent legal minds. By doing so, they set themselves up for rich, global careers in law.

Reaching the Next Level with an LL.M. Degree

Many LL.M. degrees are funded by employers. International firms specializing in business law, tax law, trade law, or other global areas of practice see a benefit in having their attorneys trained in navigating the American legal system. Employer-funded LL.M. students at Vanderbilt Law School gain access not only to knowledge of American law but also to a network of American attorneys and firms. The knowledge and connections employer-funded LL.M. students gain are essential career development tools. Already employed attorneys looking to progress their careers at their firms greatly benefit from earning an LL.M.

Embarking on a New Career Path

Although many LL.M. students are sent to study by their employers, others are looking to get their degree to open up new career opportunities. LL.M. students at Vanderbilt Law School have access to the school’s world-class career services office, through which they can meet with career advisors and access professional development resources. LL.M. students can also participate in On-Campus Interviewing programs specifically for international attorneys. At these programs, LL.M. students bid to interview with law firms. Some students are even able to secure job opportunities through this process. LL.M. students can also participate in temporary work arrangements like internships at U.S. firms. For international attorneys looking to start a new career path either in the U.S. or in an internationally focused field of law, an LL.M. is a valuable professional asset.