The 2001 film and novel and the 2007 Broadway show Legally Blonde have undoubtedly made their mark on pop culture. Romantic comedy fans across the United States and beyond are well aware that exercise gives you endorphins (which make you happy, so you won’t kill your husband), that orange is not the new pink, and that the most important rule of perm maintenance is to not wet your hair for at least 24 hours. But the insights from this classic 00s movie aren’t just Cosmo-inspired tips. Law school applicants can find the inspiration they need to make the admission process (and all that comes after) as successful as Elle Woods’ experience.
Looking good and doing good aren’t incompatible.
When Elle first arrives at Harvard Law (or Stanford, in the novel), she creates quite the impression: “I’m Elle Woods, and this is Bruiser Woods. We’re both Gemini vegetarians.” The hallowed halls of law school aren’t used to Elle’s vivid style and west coast flair. Nevertheless, she proves that she has what it takes to succeed, maintaining the perfect mani-pedi along the way. In a trademark pink suit, Elle Woods saves the day and wins the case—and you can too. Embrace your personal style, whether that’s stick on gel nails, a French manicure, or regular trips to the salon. Wanting to look good doesn’t mean you’re less of a lawyer or less of a law school candidate.
There’s a lot to learn, but hard work will get you there.
No matter how ready you think you are for the application process and attending law school, you’ve got a long path of learning ahead. You might know some common precedents, the simplest intricacies of the legal system, and how to review a case. But do you know how to serve papers to someone you can’t find? Do you know the proper formatting and other standards for creating and issuing legal papers and court documents?
Once you’ve gotten into your top choice law program and graduated from your dream school, do you know what comes next? Are you prepared for the unexpected? As a law school candidate, law student, and eventual lawyer or other legal pros, you’ve got a lot of work cut out for you. With hard work and dedication, you can make Elle Woods (not to mention yourself and your family members) proud.
Confidence is key.
In the face of the application process and this new stage of your life, it’s all too easy to feel overwhelmed or inadequate. Take some time to build your confidence regardless. Working with an experienced expert admissions consultant like those at Stratus Admissions Counseling can help you increase your confidence and feel more ready to step into an interview, a classroom, or a courthouse for the first time.
You don’t need a partner to succeed.
Elle’s entire journey to law school is sparked by her love for Warner Huntington III, who recently broke up with her in search of a more “serious” life partner. Naturally, she succeeds despite his disinterest. Once she realizes that nothing she does is enough for him, she works even harder to succeed on her own terms.
In the movie and the musical, Elle finds love with Emmett, a fellow lawyer who’s supported her along the way. However, in the book, Elle Woods has no love interest after Warner—she successfully moves through the application process and thrives at a top school as a confident woman who’s sure of herself and knows her worth. With or without a spouse or other partner, you can succeed at law school, too.
Being yourself never goes out of style.
As a law school candidate, you have more than enough time ahead of you to learn everything you need to know. For now, impress the admissions committee with your confidence and authenticity. Elle Woods was a successful law student and lawyer because she worked hard without losing herself. For a similar end result of your own, work on your mindset as much as you work on studying legal documents and preparing for legal action.
Elle Woods inspired a generation of women to reach for their dreams (or dream school), even as they sit in the nail salon. A heavy court case doesn’t mean you can’t maintain your manicure! Embrace your sense of self, study up, and get ready to have the best application in the acceptance pile.