Law School 101

In the past couple weeks I have started a journey that will change the rest of my life. I have begun law school, and I have already started to see immediate effects. In orientation the professors and deans told my incoming class and I that law school was unlike any other school. The way that we will have to think about problems will be different than anything we have ever done previously. My class and I were also told that our time will be completely taken up by school. Outside activities of all sorts will have to take a backseat. I am a part time student (which still means I take 4 classes instead of 6) who also works full time so hearing that I will have zero free time was not comforting.  Now that I am a few weeks into school I realize they were right.

My time has become completely engrossed in school more so than it ever was in undergrad. Trying to balance school, work, and social life is kind of crazy. Like I said, I work full time, which is 40 hours plus at least one day of mandatory over time, so add onto that studying for four law school classes. With law school you have to show up to class fully prepared because the professor can randomly call on you to brief a case or answer a question, and if you are not prepared then you are screwed. Finding the time to be prepared has become difficult. Time management has become crucial to staying on top of all the reading and homework. I have to plan out everything that I want to do during the week. I have specific days for studying certain classes.

One great part of school is that I get encouragement from other classmates and our professors are actually really nice. However, we are reminded all the time that law school is a struggle and that many of us will have mental breakdowns. Most upperclassmen tell us that our first year of law school will suck. All of the encouragement is usually centered around how life will be terrible, but we will survive in the end; maybe. Some of my professors quote the Bible for encouragement, but they always use passages like James 1:2 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials…” Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t often get encouraged when I am constantly told I will hate life for the next year. I appreciate them wanting to warn us, but it seems like an odd way to do it.

What is most crazy is that it has only been a few weeks. I haven’t even gotten to the struggles yet, which is probably why the “encouragement” seems odd. Managing my time is a struggle, but one that is manageable. It will become a real struggle once all of my time has run out.

“You may delay, but time will not.”
― Benjamin Franklin

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