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Author Topic: A graduating 3L's things you should know before you go to law school.  (Read 12167 times)

sno

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A little background: 3L, attending USD (for another week), have been using LSD since before I took the LSAT. Now, the things you should know:

1. DO NOT attend unless you're about as sure as you can be that you want to be here. A LOT of people attend primarily because they don't know what else to do and end up not liking it. It's a HUGE investment of time and money. Taking some time off and working after ug is definitely recommended if you're not so sure.

2. Rankings matter little. If you care about rankings (most do), don't consider the exact number, consider the number range (e.g., 1-25, 25-50, t2, t3, t4). That's really all that matters. Don't pick one t2 school over another t2 school you like better because the former is ranked 15 spots higher. When I started here, we were somewhere in the mid-60s, I don't remember exactly. The two years after we dropped to somewhere between 80 and 90, again, I think. Now, we're back up at 61. How did all this movement affect my experience? It didn't. At all. The only thing that happened as a result of the drop, as far as I can tell, was the dean held "meetings" to discuss and a decision was probably made to play the U.S. News game better. My experience did not change. My job prospects didn't look dimmer those 2 years and they don't suddenly look brighter now because we're back up in the 60's. Administration didn't suddenly get worse and then better again. Attorneys didn't suddenly stop saying "USD is a good school" those 2 years.

3. Ok, rankings don't matter. What does as far as job prospect goes? REPUTATION. Reputation in the market you want to be in. Generally speaking, yes, rankings tend to correspond to reputation, BUT (by way of example), don't sit there and think that your getting a Hastings or Davis degree will make it easier for you to break into the San Diego market than if you had just attended school in SD in the first place (even Cal Western...TJ's rep isn't as strong). Yes, Hastings is ranked quite a big higher, but they don't have much of a reputation here. Notice I said "they don't have much of a reputation" not that they "have a bad reputation." Attorneys base their judgment of schools on people they've worked with. As "better" of a school as Hastings might be than USD, if I find an employer who's never dealt with a Hastings grad and has mainly good experiences with USD grads, he'll probably choose me over the Hastings grad (all else equal).

4. If you don't want to graduate from the school you plan on attending your 1L year, DO NOT GO. I know, I know, "but I 'plan' to transfer." Most people here have it right. If you're going to a school where your first thought is "I plan to transfer," then assume that's also what 90% of your classmates are planning. DO NOT think "I plan to work my ass off" will mean a thing. Working your ass off doesn't say a thing about whether 1) you'll understand the material or 2) whether you'll know how to put what you know on paper. I don't care how brilliant you think you may be.

5. 1L is NOT the time to slack. 3L is  ;D. In gang speak, 1L is getting jumped in, 2L is earning respect, and 3L is running the cell block, not doing as much work yourself and just waiting to get out.

6. 1L may not be the time to slack, but you should still enjoy it. As much work as it may have been, I could say my first year was probably the most fun.

7. If you're going to do anything or tell anyone anything, be prepared for the entire school to know about it, even if you think the person you're telling is one you can trust. Don't not tell anyone anything, but if it's something you REALLY don't want people to know, then keep it to yourself. Got gonorrhea from that random chick you met in the bar and don't want people to know? SHUT YOUR MOUTH. Even people who don't ask or look for gossip (e.g., ME) will somehow hear about it. Hell, a lot of times, even admin will hear about it.

I'm sure there are more, but that's all I can think of for now.

Additions:

8. Supplements are your friend.
usd class of '09!

harold: what happened to my car?
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Shake Zula

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Great post. I agree 1L year is akin to getting jumped in but year 2 is more akin to running a fortune 500 company with 10 dollars. 2L year they will work you until you cry or shot yourself.

I also agree supplements are the end all be all. They are the single most important resource in law school. Professors will tell you not to get them, other students may scoff at you....GET THE SUPPLEMENTS. I use Emmanuals and Crunchtime they are pretty much worth their weight in gold.


Manwithaplan

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isn't it a bit soon to impart your wisdom? we've been out of school for only a day man!
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,.,.,.;.,.,.

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Really?  I had planned on doing very little as a 2L and 3L.  I mean, I have the 3L attitude pretty much down already.  I don't read the cases, sure as hell don't brief, and barely pay attention in class.  I spend my nights trying to get down the solo from "Sweet Child O' Mine."  Slash is a sweet guitarist.

dashrashi

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I thought 2L was hard as *&^%. More stress-crying than last year, definitely. Part of this may be because I got a dog who is neurotic and exceedingly difficult to deal with, and I only have a limited tolerance for piss and *&^% all over my kitchen (which he exceeded by Day 3), but I also thought that my classes were hard (expecting both breadth and depth of knowledge, boo), in addition to journal and other extracurricular responsibilities, which REALLY kicked up this year.
This sig kills fascists.

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Saw dashrashi's LSN site. Since she seems to use profanity, one could say that HYP does not necessarily mean class or refinement.

,.,.,.;.,.,.

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I thought 2L was hard as poo. More stress-crying than last year, definitely. Part of this may be because I got a dog who is neurotic and exceedingly difficult to deal with, and I only have a limited tolerance for piss and poo all over my kitchen (which he exceeded by Day 3), but I also thought that my classes were hard (expecting both breadth and depth of knowledge, boo), in addition to journal and other extracurricular responsibilities, which REALLY kicked up this year.

 :(

goaliechica

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I thought 2L was hard as *&^%. More stress-crying than last year, definitely. Part of this may be because I got a dog who is neurotic and exceedingly difficult to deal with, and I only have a limited tolerance for piss and *&^% all over my kitchen (which he exceeded by Day 3), but I also thought that my classes were hard (expecting both breadth and depth of knowledge, boo), in addition to journal and other extracurricular responsibilities, which REALLY kicked up this year.

Yah. The whole "1L they scare you to death, 2L they work you to death" adage turned out to be pretty accurate for me. I found 2L WAAAAYYYY more stressful than 1L. But now it's over! Wheee!

<----looking forward to being bored to death
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goaliechica

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<----looking forward to being bored to death

<---was bored to death.

<---now dead.

 :(

Quote from: Earthbound SNES
Get a sense of humor, Susan B. Anthony!
Quote from: dashrashi
I'm going to cut a female dog. With a knife with a brown handle, natch.
Quote from: Elephant Lee
Don't judge me. You've not had my life.

,.,.,.;.,.,.

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But WHY?  I thought I would be taking joke classes like Admin for which I could study three days before the Final, and, assuming I don't do LR, what else is there?

goaliechica

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But WHY?  I thought I would be taking joke classes like Admin for which I could study three days before the Final, and, assuming I don't do LR, what else is there?

1. Admin is a joke class?

2. It varies from person to person, but for me it went like this: OCIP meant I was very busy and tired and behind in all of my classes from the beginning of the semester onward, so I spent most of the semester trying to dig myself out of that hole after already feeling burned out from the whole interview process. I was also taking hard classes. Journal work kicked up for me on my subject journal. If you do any extracurriculars whatsoever, 2Ls are generally the ones organizing and being in charge of things, which is always more work than it sounds like. Participation in clinics, moot courts, organizing banquets, bringing in speakers, law review, secondary journals, organizing a symposium, etc. It just seems that almost everyone does something (or should, at least), and it all really kicks into gear during 2L, right when you are most exhausted and behind in your classes because of all the interviewing.  Second semester was better, but that's also when a lot of people decide to take a lot of hard/substantive classes (I took way too many classes this semester).

3. Since when are you not trying to do LR?
Quote from: Earthbound SNES
Get a sense of humor, Susan B. Anthony!
Quote from: dashrashi
I'm going to cut a female dog. With a knife with a brown handle, natch.
Quote from: Elephant Lee
Don't judge me. You've not had my life.