Undergraduate School: Angelo State University
Undergraduate Major: Biology
Hometown: Winters, TX
Status: Full-Time Day
5/15/13 - I have been free for a week now! I have so much free time that I simply don't know what to do. It's hard to sit still because I feel like I should be reading, writing, or doing hypos, but I am glad that I don't have to for awhile. I tried to read for fun, but it is still too painful. So I have been enjoying the sunshine and fresh air outside. It has been so pleasant. I have also been trying to get back into an exercise routine.
My internship with Texas Access to Justice starts on Monday in San Angelo. I am excited even though I don't know exactly what to expect. It will be ten weeks long, so most of the summer, but I will still have a few weeks before school starts to rest up again for the fall semester. I am still having a hard time believing that the first year of law school has come and gone. I have learned so much in the past year, made so many new friends, and established new network connections. It has been full of ups and downs, but I am now a stronger person because of it. I could not have made it without all the support from my family back home. I am looking forward to what the next two years at Texas Wesleyan (possibly Texas A&M School of Law at Texas Wesleyan University) have in store for me! But first I am going to enjoy this much needed summer break away from school. Have a safe and happy summer!
5/10/13 - I am finished with my first year of law school! I can’t begin to express to you how exciting this is! It has been a lot of hard work this past year, but well worth it thus far. I am so glad it is sweet summer time! My finals were all very challenging, but they are over now. I studied as much as I could possibly study, so I will be happy with whatever grade I get because there was nothing else I could have done. Grades won’t come out until about mid-June so for now I am putting it out of my mind.
After my last final on Wednesday, my friends and I went to eat at Joe T’s to celebrate completing our 1L year. It’s strange to think that at this time last year I did not know the people in my study group, I did not know my newfound friends existed. But after spending the most emotional, stressful, and challenging year of our lives together we have created a unique bond between us all. After literally spending all day everyday with them for the last three weeks studying, it already feels strange to have not seen them for the past two days. It will take a little bit to adjust to this new freedom. Feels like I should be studying, reading, stressing out! I am having a hard time relaxing and sitting still, so naturally I have been doing my spring cleaning that was put off for school. Hopefully by next week I will have chilled out a bit. My internship does not start until May 20th, so I have a little down time!
4/24/13 - I am officially done with all my classes of 1L year! Wow, that is hard to believe. Now all that lies between myself and the title of “2L” are the dreaded final exams. The Contracts final is Monday, Civil Procedure will be Friday, and then finishing up with property the following Wednesday, May 8th. I cannot wait to be done! Sweet freedom is so near.
Well before I rolled my sleeping bag into the library for study purposes (kidding! but I have been literally at the school 10-12 hours a day this week, I'm exhausted), I attended the Crawfish Boil that was held in a school parking lot. It was a blast! I got to hang out with all my friends, enjoy some good food and beverages, and even dunk my Contracts professor in the dunking booth. He said it would cost half a letter grade, which at the time that seemed reasonable, but now not so much because the stress of finals is really sinking in. I just feel like there is not enough time to perfect all these rules and exceptions to them and the exceptions to the exceptions! Uniform Commercial Code rules, common law rules, merchant v. consumer rules, jurisdiction, res judicata, discovery, conveyances, adverse possession, fee simple absolute, landlord v. tenant rules, third party beneficiary, assignment, delegation... this list goes on and on. My head is swirling with legal knowledge! Hopefully I will make it through. Wish me luck! I will blog you from the other side.
4/17/13 - My oral argument is over! I was so nervous, but made it through. I am so glad it is over with! By the time you all read this I will have completed the citation exam and therefore will have completed Legal Writing II! In other news, I have also received a position on the Innocence Project board! And have registered for the fall semester. So I am getting things checked off my to-do list. One rather large thing remaining is finals. I’m a bit worried about them, but every free minute from here on out will be used studying.
The Barrister’s Ball was wonderful! It was downtown Fort Worth in the Crystal ballroom of the Hilton. The crystals hanging from the ceiling and table decorations were absolutely beautiful. I am partial to crystals though, ironically enough. I am already looking forward to next year’s. It was nice to see everyone looking their best and also to visit with professors outside of the classroom in a less formal, yet more formal setting if that makes any sense at all. The food, music, dancing, and dress up photo booth were great, as well as the rolling picture slideshow. I submitted a lot of pictures of myself and friends, so it was exciting to watch for them. Overall, it was a fabulous evening and gave us all a chance to escape the stress for a while. But alas after the ball, it was back to reality, back to the library. I sort of understand how Cinderella felt, minus the whole glass slipper conundrum.
4/10/13 - Things are rolling right along. Busy, busy, busy! Sunday I was inducted into Phi Delta Phi which is an international legal honor society. We had a large initiation group of about 30 students. It is exciting to finally be getting involved more with the school. I am also interviewing for a spot with the Wesleyan Innocence Project this week to review and determine which cases to take on.
Today we registered for fall classes. What an experience. Registration opened at 7:00 am this morning and instantly classes began to fill up, and the server was so slow because everyone was up bright and early registering. I am “front loading,” which means I am taking a lot of the required courses upfront to get them out of the way.
Anyways, oral arguments are this week. I am nervous, but at the same time just ready to get it over with because that is one more hurdle closer to the finish line. The barrister’s ball, aka law school prom, is this Friday night. I am excited to dress up and see everyone else dressed up! Plus it will be an evening off. This week I have really started reviewing the semester, so the small break will already be appreciated. Next week we have our citation exam in writing and then we will be finished with that class! We are almost finished with this semester; I am just overwhelmed with the amount of things going on here at the end. I think I can… I think I can.
4/3/13 - I have just completed my trial brief! Finally! Now I can stop sending out the S.O.S. signals. I am not sure why this assignment has seemed more challenging, but I’m so glad it’s finished! Now I can move on to other things. Well sort of, anyways. We have to give oral arguments next week in our Legal Writing class over… low and behold our trial brief topic, so I can’t put it completely away just yet. Speaking of oral arguments, today we got to watch the Second Court of Appeals oral arguments at school. We heard two different cases. It was interesting to watch; hopefully I will be able to apply what I learned successfully next week.
Well, my summer plans are finally set. I received a Texas Access to Justice Internship! I will be working with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas. One of their main goals is to provide legal aid to underserved people in more rural Texas towns that aren’t near a law school. I was placed in San Angelo, TX, which I believed to be the “big city” until I moved to Fort Worth, so I can’t help but chuckle at the “rural” aspect. Anyways, it is only about an hour from my hometown, so I will also get to catch up with friends and family this summer back home. We only have about two weeks of classes left, then finals. As I said last semester, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel... the headlight of a train! But on a more serious note, I almost have a year of law school under my belt!
3/27/13 - Spring Break was absolutely fabulous! I went home for the entire week and got to catch up with almost all of my family. My car needed some catching up as well, thankfully my mom helped me get it road worthy again. Thanks Mom! It’s funny how law school completely consumes life that even simple oil changes, state inspections, and car washes take up too much time and had to be put off. After extreme car maintenance, a little shopping, some eating out and a pedicure with my mom, I was ready to study again.
The break was much needed downtime. I probably took a little too much time off, but it was worth it because I came back to school feeling refreshed and ready to finish up the semester strong. It was a good thing I came back ready, because the trial brief has been looming and dooming over me ever since. “Brief” is the shortest oxymoron I now know. This major assignment, about 20 pages and worth half of our writing final grade, is our first stab at writing a motion for summary judgment, which once we learned the ins and outs of that made it a little easier, but not much. I have had some trouble getting started, but am now well on my way. My goal is to have complete draft by the end of the week, so I can start major editing and revision this weekend. It is hard to believe we only have about three weeks of writing class left and then wrap up our other classes shortly afterwards, followed by finals. The semester is starting to wind down!
The fall schedule is already up and we have the task of creating our own schedules this time, which is exciting, but proving to be difficult. After the trial brief is turned in next Wednesday, it will be time to gear up for finals.
3/6/13 - I had my first interview this past Friday! It was for an in-house legal intern position in downtown Fort Worth. I talked to four different people, including two attorneys, for almost two hours. If nothing else, it was great interview practice for me. By the last person, I was rather comfortable and felt like I had the hang of it. Going along with that, I attended a Dress for Success seminar at school yesterday which gave helpful pointers for appearance and body language during interviews. This will prove beneficial in future interviews. I already have another interview pending for later this month, so ‘tis the season.
The trial brief assignment was lurking in my inbox last Friday and we discussed it in class yesterday. We have to write an affidavit and a motion for summary judgment for a Texas case. Finally, Texas law and Texas citations! It’s probably sad that I am excited about that, but it’s the simple things in law school. The summer schedule is posted, but I have decided to pass on summer school this year. I want to work and/or volunteer and maybe knock out my pro bono hours requirement. I have been planning my fall schedule and am just waiting on it to come out to see if it’s possible.
Spring Break is practically upon us. I need a break! I plan to do research for the trial brief and hopefully get a rough outline started and update all my class outlines, so sort of a break. We will see how productive I can be!
2/27/13 - The semester is really starting to take a toll on me, but it is comforting to know we are at the halfway point. I am ready for Spring Break! Thank goodness it is only two weeks away. I plan on going home, visiting my family, and hopefully getting a little rest. Something tells me I will be working on a trial brief for legal writing as well, but at least in a different setting. Once we get back from Spring Break, we will only have about a month of classes left, which is hard to believe. So far, I have been successfully outlining for all my classes and am beginning to consult supplements. Without midterms, it has been difficult to get into a vigorous study mode, but I am forcing myself to do so. Practice questions and hypotheticals are next on my agenda.
It seems like it is time to start narrowing down what field of law I want to specialize in now because of our own course scheduling in the near future. There are so many classes that interest me, so it may be a hard decision. Hopefully I will have an opportunity this summer to figure that out through one of the internships to which I have applied. Also, Texas Wesleyan offers several certificates in different areas of law. This is something else to think about because we were told we need to begin taking classes soon in order to fulfill all the requirements. I wish I had something else to entertain you all with, but it's basically just the same old routine!
2/20/13 - This past week seemed to go by ever so slowly! I think the only reason I survived was because my family sent me Valentine’s Day goodies in the mail. Thank you! I have still been filling out applications, writing essays, and contacting attorneys trying to get an internship set up for this summer. No word yet, but as deadlines are approaching maybe I’ll receive some news in the next few weeks. I have decided that summer school is the best backup plan.
We are having a mandatory meeting this week about course scheduling because from now on we get to choose our classes, with the exception of Constitutional Law. I am looking forward to selecting my own classes! In the meantime, I have started outlining for my current classes and feel like it’s just about time to begin study questions and hypos. There are not any midterms this semester, so everything depends on the final. Once again, no pressure!
For those of you wondering, I did participate in “Running With Your Professors” last Friday, and let’s just say I am out of shape compared to some law school professors! But the professors bought us lunch afterwards, so it made up for it. It was a good chance to get to know my Property professor and my former Torts professor. This week’s extracurricular activity is Moot Court on Friday evening. Let’s hope it goes better for me than Mock Trial. I do enjoy being more involved this semester!
2/13/13 - The Mock Trial competition was frightful! I have done a lot of speaking in my day, even though I don’t particularly enjoy it, but this was the first time I spoke without notecards, a written document, or for that matter even a Power Point to guide me. It was a very different experience. I learned that I definitely need to get my nerves under control in order to succeed at mock trial. At first, I struggled a bit and froze up a few times, but once I gained composure it wasn’t too bad. I think I could become better and more comfortable at this with more practice. Anyways, I am glad I spent my Saturday morning competing. I may try my hand at Moot Court next to see if it works out any better for me.
I did begin note organization and outlines for two of my classes this weekend and ordered some study guides. Just need to start looking at them when they arrive. This semester I told myself I wouldn’t spend as much time preparing for class and instead turn to supplements and practice questions early on in the semester and I plan to start implementing that this week and weekend. The semester is unquestionably well underway. It’s hard to me to believe we are halfway through February already! I hear there is a Professor Walk/Run Friday morning. I am going to participate if I can find out some more information! That should be a good stress relief.
2/6/13 - Memo 3 is just about finished! I know you are all ecstatic for me! I am in the final stages of editing now. When you read this, it will be turned in and forgotten about. It feels good to have done open research on my own, just one small step towards the “real world.”
This past weekend I was productive with internship applications. I have mailed out four so far and have found a few more to apply to this week. With internship application deadlines filling my law school plate as well, free time is becoming scarcer again, but it’s okay because it was expected. At least this semester there aren’t as many surprises.
So we 1Ls have been encouraged to compete in the mock trial competition this Saturday. The best way I can describe it is law school UIL. I get extremely nervous talking in front of people, so it will be a good thing for me to participate and get some practice. We have been told to perform an opening or closing statement about, you guessed it, our beloved Memo 2 over Federal kidnapping. I am going to prepare an opening statement.
Other than that new scary development, things are sailing right along. My goals for the end of the week and weekend are to survive the mock trial competition and begin getting class information organized. That way I won’t have as much work to do come finals time, which will be here before we know it at this rate!
1/30/13 - It’s hard to believe we are almost already a month into spring semester. It really has been flying by. I am still enjoying all of my classes and professors so far. It feels like I can enjoy them a bit more this semester since the fear of law school has subsided. I almost have a first draft of the memo completed, which is good because I will have almost a full week to edit it. I didn’t realize how easy we had it last semester with memo 1 and 2 by having the cases given to us. This open research assignment has been a bit more stressful, but at the same time sort of nice to have the freedom to learn and choose what we think is most relevant. It has helped me get a better grasp of navigating LexisNexis and Westlaw as well, so that it good.
As for summer internship application status, I have found several opportunities that interest me and I have my resume and my cover letter template ready to go. By next week I plan to have actually filled out a few! It has just been hard to think about this summer while focusing on right now in class. Everything seems to be going along somewhat smoothly for now. I have only been called on once in class so far and it wasn’t nearly as chest clenching as last semester. Hopefully this will continue as we sail into February!
1/23/13 - As predicted Memo 3 research has begun. We have an email memo (part one of the assignment) due Wednesday over one issue and then the formal memo due February 6th over a separate issue. I used our day off, MLK Day, to complete part one - a great thing to knock out.
Last Friday, I had a very helpful appointment with Career Services. I now have a game plan and timeline for my summer internship/volunteer search and feel much better about that aspect of this semester! It just comes down to a matter of fitting it in with everything else, typical for law school as you all know by now.
I’m finally starting to get back into the swing of things and picking up the pace thank goodness. There was no easing into this semester and none of my professors feel too bad for 1Ls because we know the ropes now. This semester I have more reading because Civil Procedure has a casebook, unlike my Legislation and Regulation class last semester. My friends in the other section express no sympathy because they have been reading this much all along. It does make a difference in the work load! I have managed to squeeze in a few workouts since class started and have been working in a little downtime at night before bed. Ok, confession: I am addicted to Bejeweled and have to play a few games before hitting the hay every night now. It helps to de-stress!
1/16/13 - First of all, I had a birthday last Friday and my law school family made it really special! Thank you guys! I had red velvet cake brought to me and everyone in the student lounge sang to me which made for a great day!
In more recent news, finally all the grades came in! I feel like I can now have closure on last semester and get on with this semester. I did well, but still have room for improvement. At least this semester is not completely foreign and I know what needs to get done and when it needs to happen. Things have already begun to pick up speed which is a good thing. Hopefully, this semester will fly by like the last one.
We have already had a meeting about summer jobs and internships, which is something I need to put some serious time into soon. I was waiting for grades to come out before I starting applying, so no excuse now. It appears that Career Services means business about helping students out. I need to make a point to go by there soon and visit.
So far I love my new professors and my Contracts casebook! Why you ask? Because they are humorous! Movie references, puns, and wittiness fill the Contracts and Property class. It is nice to have a comic relief. But aside the newfound humor, the work is piling on again. The memo 3 assignment is lurking in my inbox. By next week I will have research underway!
1/9/13 - Where did Christmas break go? My time off was fabulous, but I just didn’t quite have enough of it. I definitely could have used one more week!
Monday was the first day back and I was exhausted by lunch. I had clearly gotten out of the law school routine. Hopefully I’ll pick it back up quickly. It was like a reunion that morning! I felt as if I had known my classmates for 30 years and had been apart for just a short while, if that makes any sense. My classes this semester are Contracts, Property, Civil Procedure, and Legal Analysis, Research, and Writing 2, which should all be interesting.
I am excited for the semester, but also already a little overwhelmed. Talk of Memo 3 fills the Legal Writing air. It will include a research portion to learn of the questioned law and to look up and choose what cases we want to support the analysis, plus actual writing it, of course. It is due the first week of February, talk about time crunch. So for a few weeks you will get to read how that progresses.
Other than that little welcome back present it is just back to the same old reading, briefing, and preparing for class. I am going to try to do a few things differently this semester, like incorporate more workout time and downtime so I don’t go as crazy! Not all last semester grades are in yet. I am still curious to see how I did!
12/18/12 - I am still in aftershock of the semester. It’s weird not to have to get up early and go straight to the library. It’s bizarre not to be reading, briefing, or studying, but it’s nice. I am enjoying the break so far. A few times I have wondered what my grades will turn out to be, but I’m really trying not to think about it and just enjoy my time off.
I just got back from a ski trip! It was fabulous to get away and literally have a change of scenery. I went to Sipapu Lodge in New Mexico. The weather was beautiful, the resort was not crowded, and I did not break any bones. It was a wonderful way to begin my break. Now to spend time with family and rest up for semester number two. I hope everyone has a safe Christmas break! My law school journey is to be continued next year!
12/12/12 - I can’t describe how wonderful it was to walk out of the testing room after my last final! The Star Wars main theme song might as well have been playing in my head because I could have just destroyed the Death Star as victorious as I felt. Ha ha!
Anyways it was liberating to be finished. The past 2 weeks have been nothing but studying law. It helped that I had my study group, but it was intense. A few days I left the school with a major headache and others my eyes were fluttering. Needless to say, there was no way I could have studied more for those finals and retained as much sanity as I did.
Now it’s a waiting game for the grades. Some say they won’t be out until mid January after school is already back in session. I did the best I could do so I’m going to try not to think about them too much over the break.
I finally can focus on the Christmas season now! There is shopping, wrapping, and visiting family to do! It is such a relief to have a break for a while. There are so many books I want to read for fun over the break, but I can’t bring myself to open a book just yet! Maybe in a few days after I recover some I will be able to. It feels great to have one semester under my belt. Only five more to go!
11/28/12 - After my last class before Thanksgiving break, I secretly headed home. I couldn’t get in the garage or the front door, so I had to break into the backyard to enter through the back door. My two dogs, who my mom has been keeping for me, barked until they realized it was me and then about licked me to death. As I opened the back door, they shot in the house right up to my mom in the kitchen. She talked to them shortly (without noticing I was the one who opened the door for them). The look on her face when she realized it was absolutely priceless! It was almost worth not going home for three months to see it.
I had a wonderful visit at home. I ate turkey, ham, and Cornish hens a plenty and got to visit and catch up with my all of my close family. Thanksgiving break was just a small glimpse of what Christmas break will be like (minus the Torts reading and studying, of course). I must admit it was really hard to come back to school, but I have a semester to wrap up here.
Today was our last day of class! Now the real fun begins. Study, study, study! I will be studying some at the library and meeting my study group a few times. My first final is Monday! Wish me luck! Next time you hear from me I will officially be done with my first semester of law school!
11/20/12 - Memo 2 is turned in and forgotten about. The only thing left in our Legal Research and Writing class is a citation exam tomorrow and then we will be done with that class. The pressure of finals is beginning to weigh down as it draws nearer. Academic Support gave us some helpful advice and sample questions to practice with. They also provided an intense study schedule to keep us on track. It was a bit of an eye opener. I’m really nervous about these tests. In one class the final is worth 100% of my grade, talk about all or nothing. In another class it’s 80% and another 65%, but no pressure right?
Enough of the gloom and doom for now because it’s Thanksgiving week! I’ll share a few things that I’m most thankful for this year. First of all I’m thankful I’ve made it this far. This time last year if you told me I’d be here within a year I would have probably laughed in disbelief. I’m also thankful for my boyfriend, friends, and family that have helped me get to this point. They have listened to me complain as well as share fun facts of law along the way (warning it may get worse). I’m thankful for highlighters, post it notes, and flash drives. I’m thankful for Glannon Guides, Q&A, and Joshua Dressler. Most of all I’m thankful the semester is almost over! My brain needs a break! Only three class days this week and two the next!
11/14/12 - Memo 2 is proving to be painful and difficult. It’s like pulling teeth out of a chicken (which ironically have genes for growing teeth which are just turned off). Anyways I am in the final stages of editing it, so almost done! I miss the days when a memo was just common knowledge and you either “got” or “didn’t get.” I can’t tell you how many hours/days I’ve put into this, hopefully it pays off.
The semester is rapidly winding down, and now it is “crunch time” as they say around here. After I turn this memo, in I will update my outlines and start studying for finals. Midterm grades came back finally and I know what I need to focus on.
We have had a lot of potential students sitting in on our Criminal Law and Torts classes lately. Part of me wants to yell out “Run for your lives! Don’t do it!”, but then I remember how excited I was about coming to law school and after 13 long weeks how I still look forward to going to class and learning this material. The law is vast and full of rules, exceptions, nuggets (tidbits of the rule), and “fun facts” as I like to call them. I would never really want to discourage anyone from experiencing the life of a law school student. I feel as if we are our own distinct species though, because no one really understands what we are going through except us. Until next week!
11/7/12 - The word “blah” sums up how I feel this week. We seem to be in limbo now, or shall I say limbus (in furtherance of my Latin), as we lie in between midterms and final exams. Only 3 weeks stand between me and a plate of turkey at home with my family or a turkey Lunchable in the library with my law school buddies, depending on how productive I can be until then. So much to do and so little time, but it’s nothing new. Memo 2 has given me a terrible case of legal-analysis-block tonight, so I decided to work on other things. Hopefully tomorrow will bring new thoughts and productivity.
I’m getting a bit nervous that the semester is winding down and I still have not received a single grade. It’s a scary feeling, but all I can do is keep working hard. It will be nice to know how I did on Memo 1 soon, so I can make the adjustments for Memo 2 make sure I don’t make the same mistakes. Hopefully, we will get them back this week.
We had a 1L Career Services Orientation this Monday, which proved very informative. Apparently, the school has a lot of resources available that make the job search must more manageable which is comforting; however, finding a job is the last thing on my mind right now. I have to survive this semester first! Hopefully next week I will just be putting the final touches on Memo 2 and be in full outline mode.
10/31/12 - The Torts midterm wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I’m not sure if that’s a good sign or a bad sign, but nonetheless it’s over. My mom would say, “let it go,” so I’m doing that.
In fact, all the midterms are over, which is exciting! Memo 2 is underway. This assignment is analyzing whether the Federal Kidnapping Act was violated in a fraternity hazing situation, which proves interesting. It might not be as painful as anticipated, but definitely as time consuming.
I managed to have a little fun this past weekend carving pumpkins with my boyfriend, but it just doesn’t seem like Halloween this year. Law school seems to negate all holidays and special events thus far. Every day is pretty much the same consisting of reading, briefing, writing, studying (you know the routine). Even though I’m enjoying it, I’m ready for this marathon to be over. I’m ready for Christmas break or even Thanksgiving for that matter.
I’m really not looking forward to Torts this week. It’s Teddy Bear Immunity Week and if you purchased a teddy bear last week, you are “safe” if you get called on. I didn’t get the memo in time, so I will have to be extra prepared and hopefully not get voted off the island. One of my classmates asks before every class, “Are you ready for some tort laaawww?!?” It cracks me up every time and this week I really will have to be ready!
10/24/12 - Seems like everyone in the 1L class is tired and worn down this week. Motivation is becoming more difficult to come by. Thank goodness we have less than five weeks remaining! A fellow classmate said we could see the light at the end of the tunnel, but it happens to be the headlight of a freight train (finals)!
Quick blog shout out to my family: I miss all of you! I can’t wait to see you over the holidays. Thank you for being so supportive. Each letter, phone call, text, and email has made all the difference and knowing I have all of you behind me has given me the strength to keep going.
Torts midterm is Friday. It will be an hour long and consist of 25 multiple choice questions, which doesn’t sound bad but I’m sure it will be challenging. It already proves to be a cause of action for intentional infliction of emotional distress.
After this last midterm, focus will shift to memo 2. We received that assignment today. I must admit it was a bit depressing. I knew it would take up a lot of time, but now seems like it will consume most of my time. I still have to prepare for the remaining classes and then crank out the entire course outlines to begin studying for finals.
I’m still working on this balancing act. It’s more difficult now that I'm wearing down and want to do other things, but I must keep going. We all know what to do when law school gets us down, just keep swimming!
10/17/12 - Tick. Tick. Sigh. Waiting for the clock to strike twelve to begin the first exam of law school was one of the most nerve-racking experiences I’ve ever been through. I’ve taken many tests in my day, including the ACT, PCAT, LSAT, MFT, GRE, PTCE (you get the picture), and given several speeches, seminars, and presentations, but I have never experienced anything as fear-provoking and stressful as that first law school exam. Thankfully I survived and hopefully I did well. The next test should prove less worrisome, emotionally anyway, now that I know what to expect.
Memo 1 is complete and turned in (pause for applause!) allowing a little time to breathe, but not much. Memo 2 will be assigned next week. The Torts midterm is next Friday, just a little treat to look forward to towards the end of the month (and yes, Halloween pun intended)! Sorry you all have to deal with my humor via blog. I’ve been told it is unique and now it is newly armed with legal zing. Watch out everyone, you are now “on notice”.
I am still shocked at how quickly this semester is flying by. We have a little less than 6 weeks left. I don’t know how I will pack in and retain more legal knowledge, but I must. I feel like I should go ahead and learn the rest of Latin. With my legalese and binomial nomenclature knowledge, I’m confident I could fully explain an animal tort in Latin if the occasion ever arose!
10/10/12 - One word sums up this week…. midterm. The Criminal Law midterm is Friday. Everyone is stressed out. Heavy sighing fills the moments before class now. I think we are all either at “the wall” or nearby. “The wall”, as described in Orientation, is when you reach the point where you wonder “Why am I in law school?” It is the point where things become overwhelmingly difficult and it all seems impossible. I have heard many alternative career choices this week, but I think we will all be fine.
On a random side note, it seems like I have learned more about railroad operation and gangrene in law school than I even thought I wanted to or needed to know! I got really excited reading for Torts the other day because one of the cases discussed chemical changes. I have a minor in chemistry so it was nice to finally read something including scientific language. This also helped inspire my legal epiphany for the memo assignment.
In chemistry, we are taught to write a lab report to where another person could perform the experiment exactly as we had done so the same results can be obtained. This helped me realize that a memo for legal writing must be written so a person can follow your legal analysis step by step and reach the same legal conclusion you did. Silly I know, but it helped me tremendously. By this time next week, I will have one midterm and memo one completed!
10/3/12 - Things are rolling right along through week 7, almost halfway done with the semester! On Monday, the Legislation and Regulation railroad problem was interesting and thought provoking. We discussed how a statute gives Amtrak the power to not only take over the track of another railroad, but also sell the newly acquired track to a competing railroad if passengers aren’t transported efficiently. It was confusing and felt like a game of Monopoly gone horribly awry.
Thinking of “awry” made me reflect on a Robert Burns quote, “The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry”. This sums up law school in a sense. We have schemes of how preparation will go, how class will go, how studying will go, and how exams will go, but sometimes things can and will go awry, just something else for us to remember.
Thinking of mice in the previous quote, I realized law school involves a lot of animal phrases. For example, law students have a unique understanding of the terms “red herring”, “gopher hole”, and “rabbit trail.” As you can see, my train of thought has been all over the place this week, no pun intended.
A practice midterm exam was given in Criminal Law on Monday. It proved most insightful. I now know what I need to focus in on in my studying the next week and a half! We also received the Memo 1 Part 2 assignment. I’m about to get even busier seems like, hope things stay on track!
9/26/12 - Midterms are right around the corner, which is hard to believe! Thankfully this past weekend I had a much needed small break from the action to get me ready to buckle down and prepare for them.
My mom came up to visit me! I took her to enjoy some good Texas BBQ and then to the zoo. I had been to the Fort Worth Zoo previously in March, but this time was a different experience. I couldn’t help but think of all the children around and if the zoo would be liable for accidents occurring on the property. What if an animal escaped and attacked a visitor? What if a child enjoying an ice cream cone accidentally dropped it into the primate exhibit and fell in trying to retrieve it, all because a zoo keeper had just power-washed the sidewalk and made it slippery? Clearly, I could not completely switch out of law school mode, but we had a good visit nonetheless.
It was back to the library after she left though for a research assignment. With homesickness temporarily subsided I can get back to studying. It seems like that’s almost all I do. Law school is such an information overload! I hope I get it all situated soon. Academic Support is starting to prove helpful in that area. Texas Wesleyan uses successful upperclassmen to provide optional weekly help sessions for 1Ls. I have been every week and thus far they have been beneficial. Stay tuned as midterms draw nearer!
9/19/12 – Well, as predicted, my tune has changed as we roll into week 5 of law school. Things seem to be falling into place… directly on top of me that is. The memo assignment went fairly well, or so I thought. I guess we will see what type of feedback I receive. It’s a relief to have it done and turned in anyways.
Besides normal case reading and briefing, I’ve been instructed that I should be doing flash cards, reading outside supplements, working practice problems, and constructing an outline. This seems overwhelming. How will I ever find the time? I suppose I’ll just change my address to 1515 Commerce Street (pause for chuckle).
On a lighter note, more and more organizational meetings have been taking place, almost daily. It didn’t take us 1Ls long to learn they serve free food and we decide which meetings to attend according to our appetite that day. It’s something interesting to catch a breather from class. One class in particular makes it hard to draw a breath at times due to Socratic assault, but I know it is good practice for all of us and only conducted for the sake of making us better lawyers.
It’s very clear that one objective of Texas Wesleyan Law is to prepare us to think, respond, and act like a lawyer. These practical skills will carry graduates far into the working world. I’m thankful to be learning it now. My goal this weekend is to start doing all the extra things!
9/12/12 - I’m truly astonished at how much I’ve learned in such a short amount of time in law school already. For example, three and a half weeks ago I thought a tort was a type of dessert, a statute was a mere suggestion, and legal writing was conducted on a legal pad. My head is spiraling with all this newly acquired accurate knowledge, and I’m still enjoying obtaining it here almost a month into law school. The time really seems to be flying by; therefore, according to the well-known cultural idiom, I must be having fun!
Speaking of legal writing, the first part of the first memo is due in about a week. This certainly is a bit stressful, but what’s a little more stress for a first year law student? It will be the first major feedback that we receive, and hopefully it will be positive.
Speaking of stress, I really haven’t felt that much of it yet outside the classroom, although I believe myself to be an abnormally stressed person regularly. Yes, the reading assignments and class preparations are tedious, but maybe since I already expected it prior to the beginning of the semester the true stress of law school hasn’t hit yet. I’m certain as this memo becomes more elaborate and as midterms draw nearer I will be singing a different tune. This past weekend proved to be more dedicated to law school studies and overall be more productive than the last, if only I can keep it up!
9/6/12 - Deep into week 2 of law school, I find the library has become my home away from home. I’m there as soon as it opens spending a few hours reviewing reading assignments for that day or getting ahead, and I also spend lunchtime there working on writing assignments. After class; however, I like to go home to finish leftover reading.
I’ve done pretty well so far balancing life and school, but I have a feeling the professors are still taking it easy on us 1Ls as we are still establishing “law school legs.” Monday off this week came as a blessing and a curse. I took a much needed break from the information overload, but at the same time I feel I didn’t devote enough time to studying. I’ll have to do better next weekend.
Some say law school is like a “jealous mistress” and this is starting to prove true. So much time is needed. In another aspect, law school is like The Hunger Games stuck on repeat. Every class presents constant worry and stress of being called on, some classes worse than others. I keep reminding myself that I signed up for this. Besides time consumption and in class stress, law school is extremely fascinating. I don’t regret this decision. Study groups and friendships appear to be forming and people seem to be getting comfortable in a sense. For example, the minutes before class are now filled more with casual chit-chat instead of silence, doom, and fear.
8/24/12 - “Have you fallen in a hole?” reads a text message I received from a good friend who hasn’t heard from me recently. I couldn’t help but stop and think, “Well yes, I suppose one could say that.” Like curious Miss Alice, I have voluntarily ventured down a rabbit hole into a completely different world. Some might call it a wonderland, but it makes me think of a well-known wizarding world.
For example, there are wise, yet mysterious professors, self-moving bookcases in the library, and plenty of “magic” to learn here. This magic in particular is law. As stated in orientation, knowledge of the law is a powerful tool and mustn’t be abused. I am honored to be obtaining this knowledge at Texas Wesleyan School of Law.
I have survived my first week of classes and it has felt like longest week of my life. I’m learning a new routine, a new language, and a new profession all at the same time, not to mention new names and faces. It’s exciting, exhausting, and enjoyable all at once.
“Why did you come to law school?” seems to be a recurring question. While studying forensic science, I realized I wanted to be able to do more than just solve the crime; I wanted to be a part of the remedy. My interest in criminal law led me here, but I’m open to all areas of law and am looking forward to where it will lead me after these three concentrated years.