When you are trying to gather information to see if law school is for you, we all turn to YouTube and Google and gain a perspective from someone else’s point of view. A few things to remember are, they are not you and the way they take things will not be the same way you take things. We all have different life experiences, so what may be stressful for someone else could be a walk in the park to someone else.
1L Myths & My Truths
The first year I heard it was going to be intimidating, a lot of reading and case briefs and the Professors will scare you into being prepared. (Myth!) I do not intimidate easily so there was nothing I could say that was intimidating because you have to remember we are all human. No one is perfect and no one has all of the answers all of the time. Read the case, understand the case law and what you need to get out of it and drive on.
The first year was a lot of reading (Truth!), it took hours to get through and certain Professors wanted you to write a case brief for every case. Some even wanted you to turn yours in if you were called on- not for a grade, but just to see that you did it. There is no way around it except do it. Just do it and you will be fine.
Some people were intimidated by the cold call and having to stand up to speak. The cold call is not so bad as long as you completed the reading and truth be told, no one is even thinking about you. Everyone is just breathing that sigh of relief that it was not them who were called on. I noticed Professors will ask you questions if they 1. Realize you did not read 2. Are using a commercial case brief and 3. Are trying to book brief and scan for the answers.
2L Myths & My Truths
The second-year I heard was more laid back. (That’s pretty much all I heard). And that is so true. It is not about cold calling, now it is whoever knows the answer, just say it and as long as there is a good amount of dialogue, the Professor will not cold call. The readings are not nearly as much as 1L and you get through them so much faster. Win-Win. However, now, there are more small assignments due throughout the term. Mainly daily questions to ensure that you are understanding the material. Since the Professors assume that you have read the material and have an understanding, they tend to jump right into the discussion. So be ready.
I can honestly say, I’m liking 2L year a lot more than 1L. You’re also in the middle, you can start to see a little light at the end of the tunnel called graduation. But it is still far enough away. Time flies by quickly, so the best advice I can give is, get adapted quickly and remember it is not just about academics. Get involved in activities so you can network. Go to all the events you feel are pertinent, especially ones that other law firms will be at because it is imperative to start networking early. Get those business cards, connect with the representatives that are working the tables and actually call them. Attorneys love making lunch dates. Happy reading!