Black-eyed Susans are blooming outside the Haworth College of Business

Career Pathway: Business law

Students who are not interested in law school but interested in a law-related career should consider Western Michigan University’s business law major.

The interdisciplinary nature of this program will give you a competitive edge in your career because you will be able to understand and solve problems at the intersection of law and business. You will have a strong foundation in general business law, developing and refining important law-related business skills. This major will also prepare you to use your law-related skills in connection with the formation of and operation of your own business, in areas such as real estate and mediation services.


  • Where do I start for a career pathway in business law?

    Start by making an appointment with the Zhang Career Center, which can assist you in discovering your career interests and values. The business law industry includes employees who tend to be investigative and enterprising. They value achievement, recognition and independence according to O*Net. Find out if your work preferences match careers in business law by taking the Focus2 assessment.

    What is business law?

  • What skills are business law employers seeking?

    Technical skills are part of the proficiencies that are required for a job and may be developed in your major coursework. Business law-oriented technical skills desired are experience with data mining software, Microsoft Suite proficiency, ERP and SAP experience and search software (Fastcase, LexisNexis and Citation Services).

    Interpersonal skills enable you to succeed and are often developed outside of the classroom. Business law-oriented interpersonal skills include active listening, public speaking, persuasion, negotiation, service orientation, critical thinking and complex problem solving.

    What careers involve these business law skills?

  • How can I obtain an internship?

    There are many different ways to acquire an internship, online or in person. Visiting the Internship Catalog and the Career Outcomes Report can help you learn about the companies that have previously employed business law students.

    Handshake is WMU’s employment website. All students should set up an account and publish a resume. Resumes made public by the student are searchable by employers.

    Students use their Handshake accounts to view internship and full-time job opportunities posted by employers and sign up for on-campus interviews. For more information, visit the Zhang Career Center.

  • Student groups and supporting events at WMU Haworth

    Business law student groups include Business Law Society. Other student groups include Business Association of Mentors, DECA at WMU, Delta Sigma Pi, Leadership and Business Strategy, Phi Chi Theta and Women's Business Network.

  • NACE Career Readiness Competencies

    The Zhang Career Center at the Haworth College of Business empowers learners to launch successful business careers by engaging them in innovative programming focused on professional readiness, while developing partnerships with global, regional and local leaders who hire students. As pioneers in career readiness programs and experts in customer service, staff members in the career center strive to meet the needs of all students and employers.

    Career readiness competencies include:

    • Career and self-development
    • Communication
    • Critical thinking
    • Equity and inclusion
    • Leadership
    • Professionalism
    • Teamwork
    • Technology

    Visit the NACE competencies online to learn more.

Tasks and processes

Tasks and processes in business law:

Experience with contracts, antitrust, administrative law, bankruptcy, litigation, consumer protection law, e-commerce, employment law, environmental law, international law, land use planning, legal ethics, legislation, partnerships, mass media law, labor law, insurance law, public interest, real estate, regulation of transnational financial markets, risk, urban policy trade regulation, securities law, regulated industries, patent law and common law.

Solo and small firm:

  • Associate attorney
  • Assistance counsel
  • Assistant attorney general
  • Certified paralegal
  • Immigration paralegal
  • Law clerk
  • Legal analyst


  • Lawyer
  • Partner
  • General counsel
  • Deputy attorney general
  • City attorney
  • Attorney
  • Attorney at law

Tax law:

  • Legal assistant
  • Legal clerk
  • Paralegal
  • Real estate paralegal
  • Summer law associate

Other careers include:

  • Administrative law
  • Business transaction
  • Corporate law and finance
  • Environmental law
  • General practice
  • Homeland and national security law
  • Insurance law
  • Intellectual property
  • International law

Business Externship opportunities

The Business Externship Program provides career exploration opportunities that connect students in Western Michigan University's Haworth College of Business with mentors, many of whom are WMU alumni. Current business law externship opportunities include Haworth, Rocket Companies and many more. Learn more about the program.

Major research tools

Book an appointment

Zhang Career Center

To schedule an appointment, book with online portal or call (269) 387-2711 today.