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Author Topic: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?  (Read 3264 times)

swan

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Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« on: June 24, 2008, 09:49:47 PM »
I'm have a state court clerkship beginning in August, and I'm not required to be admitted to any state bar for the clerkship.

I've spent a lot of time in the last month trying to find housing in the state where the clerkship is and preparing for the next clerkship application season (e.g. researching judges, getting letters of recommendation lined up).

Suppose that, at the end of July, I don't feel completely ready to take the Bar. Bad idea to take the February Bar instead?

ronaldo699

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2008, 10:18:13 PM »
umm, wont you be workin leading up to the feb test?  best to take it when you have nothing to do in the 8 weeks leading up to it to prepare i hear

swan

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2008, 10:25:40 PM »
yeah, but my job is 8-5. i would start studying in december or january. i have a good memory, so i wont forget much in a couple of months.

im mostly concerned about what firms might think if they see "state x bar admission, 2009" (rather than 2008) on my resume. i dont want them to think that i failed the bar. i suppose i might not need to include the bar admission year on my resume though.

taking the february bar would take a lot of pressure off me. and the conditions for the february are exam are much better. (like thousands of people take the july bar in my state and the conditions are dungeon-like.)

jacy85

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2008, 07:21:07 AM »
yeah, but my job is 8-5. i would start studying in december or january. i have a good memory, so i wont forget much in a couple of months.

im mostly concerned about what firms might think if they see "state x bar admission, 2009" (rather than 2008) on my resume. i dont want them to think that i failed the bar. i suppose i might not need to include the bar admission year on my resume though.

taking the february bar would take a lot of pressure off me. and the conditions for the february are exam are much better. (like thousands of people take the july bar in my state and the conditions are dungeon-like.)

First, have you actually started studying yet?  You're assuming an awful lot in saying you won't forget everything you've learned between now and then.  The learning curve for your clerkship will be high, you'll be focused on lots of other things than studying, and you're going to forgot a lot simply because there is SO much to learn.

Second, the bar thing is minor.  As long as you pass is all that matters.  Sometimes people fail the bar simply because they had other crap going on over the summer, or took 2 bars and didn't put enough effort into one of them, etc.  Failing doesn't necessarily say anything about your ability to be a lawyer.  It only says something about your ability to pass that specific exam on that specific day, IMO.

Third, looking for somewhere to live is not an excuse to not take the bar.  Nor is doing research for another clerkship or calling someone up and asking for a recommendation.  I've been studying about 6-7 hours a day so far, leaving plenty of time to do that stuff (and lots of people are studying less).  Busting your ass to get the stuff done you need to do by July would have been smart, so you have a full month to focus on the bar (which is what a ton of people end up doing anyway, and they pass).

NoUsername

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2008, 07:42:32 AM »

First, have you actually started studying yet?  You're assuming an awful lot in saying you won't forget everything you've learned between now and then.  The learning curve for your clerkship will be high, you'll be focused on lots of other things than studying, and you're going to forgot a lot simply because there is SO much to learn.

Second, the bar thing is minor.  As long as you pass is all that matters.  Sometimes people fail the bar simply because they had other crap going on over the summer, or took 2 bars and didn't put enough effort into one of them, etc.  Failing doesn't necessarily say anything about your ability to be a lawyer.  It only says something about your ability to pass that specific exam on that specific day, IMO.

Third, looking for somewhere to live is not an excuse to not take the bar.  Nor is doing research for another clerkship or calling someone up and asking for a recommendation.  I've been studying about 6-7 hours a day so far, leaving plenty of time to do that stuff (and lots of people are studying less).  Busting your ass to get the stuff done you need to do by July would have been smart, so you have a full month to focus on the bar (which is what a ton of people end up doing anyway, and they pass).

Jacy, you are making me feel good.

I am doing a home study course so I really don't have any concept of how much others are doing.  I'd say I've been averaging 7-8.  But this is the last week I'll be working, so I'll have four weeks leading up to the bar with nothing but study time.  I plan on cranking it up to 10-12 hours per day once I no longer have to work.  That'll actually be less hours total work than I am doing now.  I've been pulling 13 hour days 7 days a week for about 4 weeks.

smujd2007

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2008, 09:40:49 AM »
Take the bar in July.  That is what you were prepared to do.  Stay focused, and make the best of the time that you do have.  Several of my classmates were pregnant--one of them even gave birth while studying for the bar (in early July), both still took the bar and passed.  In life, there is always something going on--there's no getting around it.  You just have to keep moving forward.  Good luck!


I'm have a state court clerkship beginning in August, and I'm not required to be admitted to any state bar for the clerkship.

I've spent a lot of time in the last month trying to find housing in the state where the clerkship is and preparing for the next clerkship application season (e.g. researching judges, getting letters of recommendation lined up).

Suppose that, at the end of July, I don't feel completely ready to take the Bar. Bad idea to take the February Bar instead?
smujd2007 is now an Attorney at Law!

antsor5

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2008, 11:39:38 AM »
yeah, but my job is 8-5. i would start studying in december or january. i have a good memory, so i wont forget much in a couple of months.

im mostly concerned about what firms might think if they see "state x bar admission, 2009" (rather than 2008) on my resume. i dont want them to think that i failed the bar. i suppose i might not need to include the bar admission year on my resume though.

taking the february bar would take a lot of pressure off me. and the conditions for the february are exam are much better. (like thousands of people take the july bar in my state and the conditions are dungeon-like.)

fyi, if you took july 08 ny bar, the swearing in typically isn't until jan 09, so you'd say NY 2009....but thats just new york, most other states are faster and would be 08...but just incase that really matters and u are ny..

swan

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2008, 03:10:44 PM »
i have had like no time to study. ive been going to all the classes, but ive literally been studying maybe an average of 2-3 hours a day outside of class.

tomorrow is our practice essay testing day, and im not going to have anything to write for some subjects (e.g. wills, since i never took it in law school, for some stupid reason).

jacy85

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2008, 04:11:56 PM »
i have had like no time to study. ive been going to all the classes, but ive literally been studying maybe an average of 2-3 hours a day outside of class.

tomorrow is our practice essay testing day, and im not going to have anything to write for some subjects (e.g. wills, since i never took it in law school, for some stupid reason).

Are you not talking to anyone in the classes?  Because seriously, I've been studying an average of 3 hours outside of class (occasionally more, but usually 3).  I have yet to write an essay, and don't think I could really write anything coherent on most subjects right now.   I've been steadily doing questions from the MPQ1 book, and have been doing pretty well, but that's about it for "practice."  I'll be focusing more on learning/memorizing and practicing essays in July, after Bar/Bri's covered most of the essay topics for my class.

And I'm not the only one keeping this type of schedule.  I'm sure if you asked around, you'd find people in your class doing about the same as you.  Yes, I know people who are doing more, but there's always people going all out and working 12 hours a day.

Edit: sorry for the double post; I thought I lost the first one, and had to retype something to the same effect.

swan

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Re: Clerking--Take February Bar Rather Than July Bar?
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2008, 04:51:29 PM »
life will be a lot less hectic if i have a federal clerkship lined up for the next year. my job search will end, and i know my career will be set in place so i wont have to waste time with career *&^% 24 hours a day.

at judge's chambers that i interned for in the spring right now mail-merging 120 letters of recommendation, printing them, and having judge sign them. im so exhausted...

i have had like no time to study. ive been going to all the classes, but ive literally been studying maybe an average of 2-3 hours a day outside of class.


So have you not been talking to anyone in the classes?  Do you sit alone and study completely alone?  Because this is pretty much my schedule (class from 9-12:30; 1/2 hour for lunch, then study from usually 1 to 3 or 4 pm, once or twice until 5).  I'm not alone in keep this schedule.  Yes, other people are doing more, and other people are doing less.

No one knows everything at this point, and for me, I know very little about some subjects (and a lot of that is what I happen to remember from class).  I'll learn it all in July, like everyone else.

Life won't get any less hectic in the winter; just buckle down and start putting more time in soon, and you'll be fine.