Every law student has a unique answer when asked to
explain why they chose to go to law school. Some want to
fight injustice, some want to make lots of money, some want
to change government policy, and some just want to help
people. Whatever the reason, law school can be an awesome
experience, and it can help you gain the tools you need to
accomplish the goals you have set for yourself.
The area of Indian law has been growing at a phenomenal
rate. Every year, the Federal Bar Association’s Indian Law
Section seems to attract more and more attendance. There has
also been a corresponding growth in job opportunity with
tribes all over the United States. There are many
opportunities to increase tribal economic development, and
strengthen tribal sovereignty on many fronts.
As tribes increase their economic profile, there is a
corresponding need in non-Indian communities to take Indian
treaty rights and obligations into consideration in
negotiation of business contracts, tribal-state compacts,
administrative regulation and management of federal lands,
protection of environmental quality, habitat and species,
protection of Indian artwork and intellectual property, etc.
The list is growing.
By pursuing a law degree with an Indian law concentration,
you can equip yourself with the knowledge you need to
navigate one of the most complex areas of law. Indian law
touches on every other kind of law at federal, state and
local levels. Most lawyers do not have an understanding of
the unique position of Indian tribes which increases the
demand for legal professionals with Indian law background
There are many reasons why law school might be a benefit to
you, and not all of them are articulated here. Law school is
an investment of money, time and effort. The decision to go
to law school should be taken seriously because of that
investment. We hope that this guide is helpful in answering
some questions about law school, and in getting started down
the path to becoming a lawyer.