Law School Discussion

Question re: Parenting and Law School

Question re: Parenting and Law School
« on: August 09, 2005, 11:44:46 PM »
I am in the process of applying to law school and I am trying to decide whether to go FT or PT.  I have two school age children with the usual assortment of activities.  I do have some assistance from my parents and from my ex.  Question is would I be crazy to try to go FT day? ??? I do have the option of PT day but it will limit my school choices.

Advice from those already "in the trenches" would be appreciated.


Re: Question re: Parenting and Law School
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2005, 05:20:21 AM »
I only know one single parent in law school, and she had a rough time.  It's hard enough if you try it with another parent at home. 

But keep in mind the career opportunities that stem from your school choice.  Are you looking at top tier schools?  There are a few that have part-time programs, including Georgetown and Fordham.

Re: Question re: Parenting and Law School
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2005, 05:38:32 AM »
I have a kid and I am going 3/4 time, but I am married which helps. He travels a lot so it makes it seem like I do it alone. If they are in school--then you can probably take classes during the week and get your reading done for the week/with some reviewing time in there too. Finals time is a little more difficult--but if you have a strong support system--you will be able to pull it off. Could you test the waters your first semester taking a class less than full time? Maybe get yourself acclomated.(sp?)
good luck!


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Re: Question re: Parenting and Law School
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2005, 05:48:43 AM »
Look at the non-trad board for a similar discussion on this topic. My classes don't start for two weeks, so I can't answer your questions based on first-hand knowledge. I also decided between FT and PT, and chose FT because it would allow me to completely focus on school and still give me sometime to see my children during the evening. PT school would also require me to work full-time, leaving no time to see family.

I don't think it's at all crazy to do full-time with kids - if I thought it was crazy I wouldn't even be making the attempt. You know your own strengths and capabilities, just do the research as your are applying for schools. Talk to the admissions people - ask if there are many families in the law school, you'll either get the "blank stare" or something like "oh yea, we have tons of families!" or else will give you examples of other parents, single or otherwise. That was a big clue for me.

Re: Question re: Parenting and Law School
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2005, 11:53:58 AM »
I am a 3rd year law student who has 3 kids and is also going to be having another baby in October. I think it's definitely possible to go to school fulltime and raise kids too, but it will be a lot of work. Make sure you have a good support system and expect that your first year will be the hardest because the school usually dictates what classes at what times you have to attend school during your first year. The second and third years you can create your own schedule, and it makes it really easy to be home when you want to be.
I made it through 2 years so far, and even commuted 2 hours each way my first year. It was tiring, but I was a fulltime student so I could be home in the evenings with the kids, and because they were in school anyway during the day (except my youngest was in daycare.)
I encourage anyone with kids to not let having a family get in the way of your own goals and dreams, and I think law schools need students with families to push them to create schedules of classes that work better for parenting students, etc.
At Seattle University School of Law we created a student organization for students who have families (we call it FUN- Families United Network) and it's a great way for all of us to network with each other. Some members even swap daycare hours. It's been really good for our school to have our organization on campus because those without kids are now aware of those of us who do, and they have been very supportive when planning events, etc.
Good luck with your law school endeavors!