October 31, 2019
Congratulations, you received an invitation to interview with a member of our Harvard Law School Admissions Committee! At this point, you might start thinking about what to wear, which books to stack artfully behind you, how Zoom actually works . . . all important issues to bear in mind.
Most importantly, we suggest that you consider three major themes as you prepare:
Tell Us Why
We know you want to go to law school—but why? Now is the time for some introspection. There are probably three main questions you should ask yourself and be able to answer fluently to ace your interview: (1) Why you?, (2) Why Harvard Law School?, and (3) Why now?
The first question strikes at the personal reason why you want to go law school. Are there internal or external motivators driving you to take this step and how do you contend with those?
The second question should help you figure out why you think Harvard Law School is a good fit for you among the hundreds of law schools as options. Is it the faculty, clinics, alumni network—what is it that really makes you excited thinking about Harvard Law School?
Finally, there is always a time and place for everything, so think deeply about why your experiences and aspirations have led you to believe that the time is now for you to start your legal education.
Are You Ready For This?
We cherish the opportunity to get to know our applicants better through the interview process. We want this to be a positive experience for you, so we honor the time you put into your application by preparing carefully for your interview. Your interviewer will have read the entirety of your application before sitting down to speak with you over Zoom.
This is a formal interview, but you can expect a friendly tone. At base, we are asking you to show us that you are ready for Harvard Law School. Think deeply about how the confluence of your successes, failures, circumstances, and dreams have prepared you to be a part of an outstanding institution training future legal leaders. If that vision is clear for you and you think you are ready for your next step here at Harvard Law School, then make sure to articulate it.
The Music Behind the Words
How you say something might be just as important as what you say. Be savvy about the length of your answers and think about how that might affect the number of questions the interviewer might get to ask you. Be wise about your questions. You might not get more than one or two, and what you ask tells us much about the time you have spent thinking carefully about the fit between you and Harvard Law School. Finally, relax and enjoy the conversation. Remember that the interview is but one component of the whole application. Do not let the burden of self-imposed great expectations make the interview a stressful exchange; instead, seize the opportunity to highlight for us what you would like us to remember about you. We want to advocate for you, so help us do that as much as possible.
Again, congratulations on receiving an invitation to interview with us. We are excited about the opportunity to get to know you better!
Filed in: Inside the Black Box