Have an interest in international law but are unsure just what you’d do with your degree after graduation? The truth is that there are a number of high-paying jobs that would be open to you after graduation. International lawyers typically earn an average of $68,000 per year to start and often enjoy full benefits in addition to salary. Plus, being an international lawyer can give you the flexibility to search for full-time employment or more flexible contract work.
1. Government Official
International law degrees can prepare you for work as a public servant. Government officials have the ability to make widespread change at the local, state or national level. In addition to serving constituents, government officials also perform managerial and administrative tasks. International law degrees that emphasize international relations, diplomacy and governance will best prepare you for working as a government official.
2. Courts Officer
International law degrees can prepare you for work as an officer of the courts or a judge. You may find yourself presiding over trials at international tribunals and then researching arguments to make informed decisions about cases. Normally, judges are appointed by government officials or are elected to their positions. To prepare yourself for a career as a courts officer, consider international law degree programs with specialties in criminal justice.
3. Academic Researcher and Teacher
If you have a real passion for the law and enjoy academic environments, you may put your international law degree to use in the world of academia. Faculty of law universities conduct research and publish papers on topics related to international law and teach undergraduate and graduate level courses. Specialized master’s degrees with a heavy emphasis on research will best prepare you for this type of career.
4. Corporate Lawyer
International lawyers are in demand at large corporate law firms. There, you may be required to oversee international business transactions, draft and proofread contracts and advise key decision makers. In addition, corporate international lawyers may also be involved in helping companies deal with international governing bodies and other companies located overseas. Degrees in international tax law or international economic law will best prepare you for careers at corporate law firms.
5. Mediation and Consultancy
If you’re interested in a legal career that will continuously present new challenges, working as an adviser or mediator can be an excellent option. International lawyers working in these fields help to compose and negotiate treaties, interpret international law for clients and often work with cases involving corruption, intellectual property and sovereign debt. International law degrees with specializations in global affairs or globalization can help to prepare you for work as a mediator or consultant.
The first step toward embarking on any of these careers is gaining entry to an international law master’s degree program. These programs typically last for one to three years and are offered by universities all over the world. Admission requirements will vary from program to program, but typically, you will need to have a bachelor’s degree in an applicable field and a history of academic excellence.