Ricky Aiello ‘17

Political Science and Justice Studies Majors | Lawyer

Hometown: Peabody, Mass.
Undergraduate Major(s)/Minor(s): B.A. Political Science and Justice Studies, Sociology Minor.
Graduating Class Year: 2017.
Student Organizations: Tau Kappa Epsilon.
Did you go to Law School directly after graduating college? Yes.
What area of Law are you currently practicing? Private Equity Mergers & Acquisitions.
Email: ricky.aiello@kirkland.com.

Where are you in your legal career?

Since October of 2020, I have been practicing in private equity mergers and acquisitions at a large firm.

 What suggestions do you have for studying for the LSAT?

Strategize – using the timeline, figure out when to take the LSAT, before you begin preparing for the test. Because I was unprepared for which test I needed to take, I had one month to study and take the LSAT in order to apply for the following fall. If I missed the winter exam, I would have been forced to take a year off. If you don’t have any lawyers in your family (which I didn’t), talk to someone in advance and form a plan ahead of time. The best piece of advice that Ricky can provide is “study the summer before your senior year of college, take the LSAT in the fall, and schedule another test in the winter – you may have a bad test day, so plan for the second test.”

What suggestions do you have for applying to law school?

Figure out where you want to be/practice. If you are going to a smaller or lower-ranked school, as I did, then make sure it is in the location where you want to settle down and start a career. Attending high-ranked schools does not impact your ability to practice somewhere else as much because of the school’s reputation. For example, going to a smaller or lower-ranked law school in New England is great if you want to practice in New England because of the local alumni network and reputation.

Choose who will be writing your recommendation letters wisely. Ask someone that you have spent a fair amount of time with/worked with and who knows you. Figure out your message/your pitch and strategize. 

What was the most important thing you did to prepare for law school while at UNH?

Knowing how you study and work in a way that will allow you to succeed. Compared to undergraduate school, law school is a business atmosphere – you must police yourself because no one is overseeing you or making sure you stay on top of the required/recommended work.

What was the most important thing you did in law school to prepare for your career?

Building your network with attorneys and fellow students. The people you meet and interactions you have will last beyond the three years in school.

There isn’t a real substitute for law school. But, before deciding to go, get a feel for the legal market – figure out if you want to be a lawyer for your career or if you just want to go to law school. You will be spending three years of your life and a large sum of money (hopefully not), so strategize accordingly. For example, if you want to practice as a public interest lawyer or in a governmental agency vs. private practice, research lifestyle differences between the practices and possible future earnings. Weigh up the schools that offer you the best financial package or that place attorneys in your goal practice area most often. Think about your options – this is the practical reality.