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My Interview with Vaughn W., Attorney at Law
Vaughn W. started becoming a lawyer in 1988. Today, he is self-employed in his own practice in law. Many have numerous opinions about lawyers. Like how their job is stressful or they make much money. But according to this interview, becoming and being a lawyer means so much more than that. It can be a very rewarding job in many ways.
What made you decide to become a lawyer?
I enjoyed discussions about various issues and arguing points with people. Whenever I disagreed with the opinions of others, I would always argue vigorously and persuasively.
Was this always your dream job?
A: Ever since I was in high school, I started to develop a love of advocacy.
Around how much do you get paid per year?
It varies, but lawyers make anywhere from 50,000 to 300,000 per year.
If you could change your job for another, what would it be? Why?
I would have become a doctor or a teacher if I had to choose again. Doctors and teachers make significant differences in peoples’ lives.
Was anyone else in your family a lawyer? (If not, would this change your choice of career?)
No. I am the first one in my family to graduate from college. In many ways, I was a trailblazer. Since I’ve gone to college, other cousins, nieces, and nephew have gone.
How did your first case go? Do you have any regrets?
I worked as a prosecutor for Cook County, so I had many cases in one day to start. It was overwhelming, because there was a courtroom full of people and I had to deal with all of their cases that day. My regret was not starting off in a smaller law firm environment.
How challenging was it to have the career you have today?
It was challenging because I had to study hard to get where I am. I constantly have to stay sharp and keep up with changing laws. I also have to take continuing education classes to renew my license. At no point is it easy to be a lawyer.
Do you have any advice for other future lawyers?
Choose an area of law that you believe you will enjoy because it is easier to work when you enjoy the work you do. When you don’t enjoy your work, then work becomes labor.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Seeing people achieve what they were trying to achieve when they came to me. Also, when they can’t achieve all of their goals, at least they can achieve the best result possible. Most of the time, it is not about winning or losing, but it is about protecting the rights of each client.
As you can see, becoming and being a lawyer isn’t an easy job, but if it is your dream and you are truly passionate about it, this career is definitely for you.