Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
snyphil2
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:46 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby snyphil2 » Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:38 pm

Hi all - been gone for a while, but back now. Any more questions? Hope EIW went well.

manbear
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:12 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby manbear » Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:52 pm

What were your impressions of the other students? Did your effort stand out among your peers? Were there many students who didn't seem to try hard? Did you get the sense that your approach to school was particularly unique or different compared to what the others were doing? Any insight is appreciated.

snyphil2
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:46 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby snyphil2 » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:24 pm

manbear wrote:What were your impressions of the other students? Did your effort stand out among your peers? Were there many students who didn't seem to try hard? Did you get the sense that your approach to school was particularly unique or different compared to what the others were doing? Any insight is appreciated.


The other students were exceptionally smart and cool people. I'm not sure why they didn't do as well as I did, I think part of it has to do with humility about being smart and working hard: having done so much cool shit and having been so successful for so long, maybe they weren't as prepared as me to throw everything I knew to the curb and start over. Maybe I'm wrong.

Did my effort stand out? I don't know; there were a number of people I remember seeing in the library late at night or "all the time" and from what I know those people are on law review or at top firms. Is part of it selective memory? Probably; but, in retrospect, it looks like the people who worked hard and smart did well. I'd say my effort did stand out among my peers, in that I was always happy and interested in talking about school subjects no matter the context. I also generally pushed back on doing other things. I also wouldn't put up with standing around with each other and complaining about how much we had to do, rather, I'd go and actually do work. That's an important mindset to have.

None of this is to discredit my classmates, who have just as much to offer as I do in many other ways. I think part of my success was being willing to adopt my professors' viewpoint without overly asserting my personal beliefs, and part of it was doing whatever it takes to succeed and not getting discouraged.
Finally - and I'm not sure why this hasn't made its way in here yet - I think it's incredibly important to be as true to yourself as possible about how well you know the material. I generally have a very good idea of where I am and how well I understand things; I'm constantly testing my knowledge by asking others how they see things, and comparing to my understanding of these things; where I think I'm weak, I'll try to improve. If you're talking to your professors, for example, make it about you, and your understanding of the doctrines at question. Don't argue policy, because it isn't your job to be a pundit averse to your professor; it's your job to figure out how to talk from the standpoint of someone else's doctrine. Maybe infuse your own ideas here and there; and keep that in the background; but be able to speak in the language of the scholars you study.

snyphil2
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:46 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby snyphil2 » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:36 pm

anon wrote:Thank you so much for offering your input. I am an incoming IL at Georgetown, and I am both excited and nervous about my prospects at law school. I am under the impression the first few weeks might be a little abstract. Did you feel the same way? In retrospect, was there something which you did during the first month at law school which was effective? I appreciate your insight!!!


Answering this one from PM in public.

Abstract? I remember thinking, or expecting, that law school would be something totally new and incomprehensible. Not really the case, but, as above, that might be a good way to look at it. I had the fortunate situation that one of my 1L professors kindly gave us a good introduction or "primer" on law school: she/he taught us what case briefing means, directed us to some resources about how law school works and how to do well, and was happy to address our basic questions, even if they were about other classes. Like, I wouldn't be surprised if one of your professors just uses words like "prima facie" without ever really explaining what that's supposed to mean, expecting you're sort of versed in that part of the law. That's good in one way, since it prepares you for all the lawyers who do that sort of thing in the real world. On the other hand, it's nice to have a professor who will take you step by step from the normal world to the world of the legal academy. They aren't the same world. Often, it's the job of the legal research and writing professor to do this: to take a more practical approach and, if not tell you how things work, let you figure out how things work for yourself.

My advice is to seek out that professor or person, who makes things a little clearer, and ask them your questions, even if the questions aren't about their course, specifically. It might be best to do this in office hours, usually: your classmates and professor will think strange things if you keep asking Torts questions in Civil Procedure. All the professors are like textbooks when it comes to the law, generally; I recommend finding one you can understand and going to their hours once or twice to ask them your GENERAL questions about the way things work. It would also be worth doing the same with a upper-level classmate.

ignatiusr
Posts: 61
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby ignatiusr » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:23 pm

Did you take/do you know anything about Adam Levitin? I will be a 1L at HLS this fall, and he's a visiting professor here (teaching Contracts).

snyphil2
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:46 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby snyphil2 » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:51 pm

ignatiusr wrote:Did you take/do you know anything about Adam Levitin? I will be a 1L at HLS this fall, and he's a visiting professor here (teaching Contracts).


Yup, he's cool and did some work for Congress if I recall correctly. I think he would be a great contracts professor, particularly on modern stuff like mandatory arbitration clauses.

snyphil2
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 4:46 pm

Re: Rising GULC 3L, top 5% taking questions

Postby snyphil2 » Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:43 pm

anybody else?




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