UVA Law Students Taking Questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
User avatar
RVP11
Posts: 2774
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:32 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby RVP11 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 10:10 pm

pjo wrote:I saw on here that you list two alternative journals when you enter the write on competition for LR. Are all the secondary journals just write on? How does this work, how difficult is to to get on a secondary journal? Any journals more/less difficult to write onto?


All the other journals are write-on only. The writing competition is typically in February and lasts only a weekend, and you get to pick which weekend. It's generally very easy to write on to a journal, but some are tougher than others.

Generally, VJIL is the toughest, and VELJ, VJOLT, and VaSE are considered the easiest. But virtually everyone who wants to be on a journal can get one.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Nov 18, 2010 10:11 pm

pjo wrote:I saw on here that you list two alternative journals when you enter the write on competition for LR. Are all the secondary journals just write on? How does this work, how difficult is to to get on a secondary journal? Any journals more/less difficult to write onto?

There's a single "unified journal tryout" for LR and secondary journals. Here's how it works:

1) You rank the two secondary journals you'd like to be on.

2) You do the write-on.

3) You submit a shitload of copies of your write-on answer. These are distributed between the LR and the two journals you picked.

4) You find out what secondary journals, if any, you made it on.

5) You find out much later if you made LR, and can quit the journal you made if you don't want to do both.

How difficult it is depends on how many people bid on a particular journal. I think there's some snowball effect here, since some people will go "hey what journal are you going to try out for" and someone goes "I'm gonna try out for Virginia Journal of Bird Law cause nobody tried out for it last year" and folks talk and then suddenly 2/3 of the class is bidding on the Bird Law journal in the hopes of making a journal.

I think the journal bidding system is one of the worst things, if not the worst thing, about UVA as a law school. I hated it and loathed it, and it ended up playing a huge role in me deciding not to stay at UVA once I had the chance to leave. The journal system is the one thing about UVA I am truly bitter about (if you can't tell) and if I could recommend they change just one thing, it would be to make the journal competition a lot better.

pjo wrote:Also... any suggestions for places with good bar food/BBQ etc? I know there's a buffalo wild wings near by but are there any "home-town" places that students prefer?

I knew a lot of students that preferred BWW and Chipotle since they're affordable and a short walk from campus. There are a number of bars with good food down along the Corner (by the main UG grounds) though.

User avatar
pjo
Posts: 610
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 10:14 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby pjo » Thu Nov 18, 2010 10:27 pm

Thanks! same goes to RVP11. I only ask because I'm actually interested in 3 of the secondary journals (VELJ, Business & Law, and the Tax Review)-- I actually wish there was an Environmental-Business one but I guess it would fall into one of those categories. I'm just wondering if the VELJ is more "animal rights for the American bob-cat" than "sustainable business practices".


I saw a lot of students recommend the North Grounds Rec Center, but the site seems to make it sound like it's just cardio/light weight equipment. If I actually plan on working out and lifting am I going to have to go to Memorial Gym (That's the main gym right?)? About how far of a walk is it from the law school to Memorial Gym?

User avatar
BruceWayne
Posts: 2032
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:36 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby BruceWayne » Thu Nov 18, 2010 10:35 pm

pjo wrote:Thanks! same goes to RVP11. I only ask because I'm actually interested in 3 of the secondary journals (VELJ, Business & Law, and the Tax Review)-- I actually wish there was an Environmental-Business one but I guess it would fall into one of those categories. I'm just wondering if the VELJ is more "animal rights for the American bob-cat" than "sustainable business practices".


I saw a lot of students recommend the North Grounds Rec Center, but the site seems to make it sound like it's just cardio/light weight equipment. If I actually plan on working out and lifting am I going to have to go to Slaughter? About how far of a walk is it from the law school to Slaughter?


If you're an avid lifter who likes to have a variety of different style lifts to choose from, Memorial Gym is your best bet. That said, you really only need a few basic lifts to build total body muscle and North grounds has the equipment for all the basics. If you want to do some cable curls etc. though head to Memorial.

I can't believe I just figured it out a week or 2 ago, but vanwinkle is right about our journal process--it's horrible. Essentially, we're one of the few top 14 schools (the only?) where you can want to do a journal, and not be able to. That's horrible considering how many employers value journals.

User avatar
RVP11
Posts: 2774
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:32 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby RVP11 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 11:10 pm

BruceWayne wrote:Essentially, we're one of the few top 14 schools (the only?) where you can want to do a journal, and not be able to. That's horrible considering how many employers value journals.


I think that's a really rare occurrence. Last year, even people who didn't do the journal tryout in February managed to get on journals.

I do agree that it's silly to have to try out for anything that's not LR, though.

User avatar
badwithpseudonyms
Posts: 815
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:48 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby badwithpseudonyms » Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:54 am

pjo wrote:I saw on here that you list two alternative journals when you enter the write on competition for LR. Are all the secondary journals just write on? How does this work, how difficult is to to get on a secondary journal? Any journals more/less difficult to write onto?

Also... any suggestions for places with good bar food/BBQ etc? I know there's a buffalo wild wings near by but are there any "home-town" places that students prefer?


Belmont BBQ is about the only legit BBQ place in-town. Eppie's does southern comfort food on the cheap. Miller's has a giant plate of nachos that isn't bad. And there are a bunch of Five Guy's, if you want greasy-delicious, no frills burger and fries. Other than that, Charlottesville is actually a little light on the blue-collar fare. Bodo's doesn't really fall in to that category, but I'd fight a monkey for one of their breakfast sandwiches right now.

As far as the gym situation, North Grounds is pretty weak. I mean, it's functional (read: there are free weights and a few benches and a random assortment of really old machines), but if you are used to nicer amenities, you're going to have to venture on to central grounds.

User avatar
YCrevolution
Posts: 4714
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:25 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby YCrevolution » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:11 am

..

User avatar
pjo
Posts: 610
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 10:14 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby pjo » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:23 am

YCrevolution wrote:
pjo wrote:Thanks! same goes to RVP11. I only ask because I'm actually interested in 3 of the secondary journals (VELJ, Business & Law, and the Tax Review)-- I actually wish there was an Environmental-Business one but I guess it would fall into one of those categories. I'm just wondering if the VELJ is more "animal rights for the American bob-cat" than "sustainable business practices".


I saw a lot of students recommend the North Grounds Rec Center, but the site seems to make it sound like it's just cardio/light weight equipment. If I actually plan on working out and lifting am I going to have to go to Memorial Gym (That's the main gym right?)? About how far of a walk is it from the law school to Memorial Gym?

I'm on VTR. We're supposed to have a joint softball team with VELJ. I proposed that we call it the "Paperless Returns."


haha I like it. Do you only have one shot at getting on a journal or can you try again as a 2L (same question about LR)? Also, does that mean journals and LR start in the spring of your 1L or Fall of 2L? If you do moot court, when do most ppl get into that and how long does it last? When do most ppl do a clinic if they're going to do one? If I wanted to do VTR or the Volunteer Income Tax pro-bono stuff, would I be at a disadvantage if I'm not an accounting/finance UG major? Thanks for the help

User avatar
YCrevolution
Posts: 4714
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:25 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby YCrevolution » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:37 am

..

User avatar
plenipotentiary
Posts: 616
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 11:13 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby plenipotentiary » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:43 am

vanwinkle wrote:I think the journal bidding system is one of the worst things, if not the worst thing, about UVA as a law school. I hated it and loathed it, and it ended up playing a huge role in me deciding not to stay at UVA once I had the chance to leave. The journal system is the one thing about UVA I am truly bitter about (if you can't tell) and if I could recommend they change just one thing, it would be to make the journal competition a lot better.


How do you think they could improve the journal competition? What's so terrible about it? (I don't really have anything to compare it to)

User avatar
YCrevolution
Posts: 4714
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:25 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby YCrevolution » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:50 am

..

User avatar
oscodasa
Posts: 151
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 9:41 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby oscodasa » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:55 am

.
Last edited by oscodasa on Sun Nov 28, 2010 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
bgdddymtty
Posts: 697
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2010 12:59 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby bgdddymtty » Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:14 am

oscodasa wrote:I have a question for UVa students of any L...I'm seriously considering switching my RD to ED at UVa. In the meantime, the one concern I have about attending is the quality of life/culture. I don't drink and am afraid I may have a difficult time adjusting socially due to this. Can anyone shed light on how necessary it is to be a social drinker at UVa?

I know this is very minute in the spectrum of all the positive attributes of UVa but I want to be sure that I know what I'm getting myself into on all levels should I ED.

Thanks!

My section has a really good relationship and does a lot of things together, but all of the official section activities with the exception of one have revolved around alcohol (two if you count the opening potluck, but even then the beer pong table came out). Since I have a family to go home to, I don't feel pressured to go to section mixers, bar review, etc., but if I was single it would probably be a little bit awkward. That said, we also do informal things like dinner/movies/concerts together, and those are of course easy to enjoy without a can of Four Loko in tow.

Bottom line: as a non-drinker, you won't fit in as much, but you can still fit in.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:42 am

YCrevolution wrote:
plenipotentiary wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:I think the journal bidding system is one of the worst things, if not the worst thing, about UVA as a law school. I hated it and loathed it, and it ended up playing a huge role in me deciding not to stay at UVA once I had the chance to leave. The journal system is the one thing about UVA I am truly bitter about (if you can't tell) and if I could recommend they change just one thing, it would be to make the journal competition a lot better.


How do you think they could improve the journal competition? What's so terrible about it? (I don't really have anything to compare it to)

They could use an answer key with correct answers for a start. Last year, their was a mistake in the answer key that wasn't caught by anyone until a secondary journal editor pointed it out (LR creates the tryout package).

Haha, this would be a great start. But besides that:

1) Allow students to bid on more than two journals. There is no reason you can't let students bid on more than two, and making them only bid on two when they're all space-limited isn't really fair. It's possible that this is because each journal has to score the test results itself, but there's a way around that:

2) Just have LR score everything and give the scores to the secondary journals. They could break it down into separate scores for the Bluebooking and written parts, so journals can decide how much weight to give each part. That way they don't have to do as much work, and really, there's no real need for three different journals to be grading the exact same set of answers. Of course, the obvious flaw in this is what YCR noted above, that LR might screw up the tryout packages, but hey.

3) Forbid students from being on more than one secondary journal. Since most journals take the best write-on students that bid on it, the same students ended up getting chosen for two different journals. I'm guessing this is because of the economy, but quite a few people last spring accepted at both. There's kinds of experience you only gain being on a journal, but being on two journals does not give you twice the insight or make you look twice as good to employers. Since space is limited, they should limit it to one journal per student to make sure everyone has a chance to get on one they're interested in.

That'd be a good start, IMO. I have other ideas but I think those would resolve a lot of the problems.

005618502
Posts: 2577
Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 10:56 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby 005618502 » Fri Nov 19, 2010 1:52 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
YCrevolution wrote:
plenipotentiary wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:I think the journal bidding system is one of the worst things, if not the worst thing, about UVA as a law school. I hated it and loathed it, and it ended up playing a huge role in me deciding not to stay at UVA once I had the chance to leave. The journal system is the one thing about UVA I am truly bitter about (if you can't tell) and if I could recommend they change just one thing, it would be to make the journal competition a lot better.


How do you think they could improve the journal competition? What's so terrible about it? (I don't really have anything to compare it to)

They could use an answer key with correct answers for a start. Last year, their was a mistake in the answer key that wasn't caught by anyone until a secondary journal editor pointed it out (LR creates the tryout package).

Haha, this would be a great start. But besides that:

1) Allow students to bid on more than two journals. There is no reason you can't let students bid on more than two, and making them only bid on two when they're all space-limited isn't really fair. It's possible that this is because each journal has to score the test results itself, but there's a way around that:

2) Just have LR score everything and give the scores to the secondary journals. They could break it down into separate scores for the Bluebooking and written parts, so journals can decide how much weight to give each part. That way they don't have to do as much work, and really, there's no real need for three different journals to be grading the exact same set of answers. Of course, the obvious flaw in this is what YCR noted above, that LR might screw up the tryout packages, but hey.

3) Forbid students from being on more than one secondary journal. Since most journals take the best write-on students that bid on it, the same students ended up getting chosen for two different journals. I'm guessing this is because of the economy, but quite a few people last spring accepted at both. There's kinds of experience you only gain being on a journal, but being on two journals does not give you twice the insight or make you look twice as good to employers. Since space is limited, they should limit it to one journal per student to make sure everyone has a chance to get on one they're interested in.

That'd be a good start, IMO. I have other ideas but I think those would resolve a lot of the problems.


Is there no grade on to any Journal? I thought that all schools had a grade on as well as a write on? Oh man this doesnt make me happy to hear

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Nov 19, 2010 2:07 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:Is there no grade on to any Journal? I thought that all schools had a grade on as well as a write on? Oh man this doesnt make me happy to hear

You can grade onto LR, but there is no grade-on component to any of the secondary journals.

User avatar
Cavalier
Posts: 1994
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 6:13 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby Cavalier » Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:22 pm

I don't see anything wrong with the journal competition. Less than 20% of the people who did the competition didn't get on a journal in the first round, and most of them were able to get on a journal in the second round. If you are truly awful at Bluebooking, it's probably best for the articles editors that you not be on a journal.

Generally, most people who make it on to one of the more competitive journals will make it on to both their choices - if you select VJIL and Social Policy, you're likely to get either both or neither - so selecting two competitive journals is risky. Just pick your top choice, and then use your other choice for a safety like VASE or VJOLT.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:40 pm

Cavalier wrote:I don't see anything wrong with the journal competition. Less than 20% of the people who did the competition didn't get on a journal in the first round, and most of them were able to get on a journal in the second round. If you are truly awful at Bluebooking, it's probably best for the articles editors that you not be on a journal.

Generally, most people who make it on to one of the more competitive journals will make it on to both their choices - if you select VJIL and Social Policy, you're likely to get either both or neither - so selecting two competitive journals is risky. Just pick your top choice, and then use your other choice for a safety like VASE or VJOLT.

I have these rebuttals:

1) The way you get good at Bluebooking, if you're not good at it, is by being on a journal and doing it. Also, Bluebooking for journals is different than Bluebooking for the memos you write during 1L. You're being tested on how to do something you haven't learned how to do yet, and you're already busy enough teaching yourself how to do things nobody else will (like how to take exams and apply for 1L jobs).

2) You can't know if you're terrible at Bluebooking until after you've done it and found out how well you've been graded. And you have to decide these things before you find out how well you did on the write-on. You can't know going in if you would be one of the few good enough for VJIL, so if you want to make sure you want to make a journal you don't bid on VJIL and instead bid on one competitive but more possible journal (Social Policy) and one journal you don't really like but has good odds of getting on (Environmental). And then it turns out you could've done well enough to get in VJIL anyway. By taking the "smart choice" you took yourself out of consideration for the journal you wanted most and could've got on, just because you didn't know going in that you did that well.

3) For that 20% that didn't initially make a journal, it wasn't certain there would be any options for them at all originally. It took some deliberation among the journals before they announced a second-round competition. That second round didn't officially exist; if it's a formal annual thing than it'd make things much easier, but I got the impression the only reason they did that was a lot of anger that year about how many didn't get on a journal. They might not do that again, and that'd leave folks who didn't get on their first-choice picks out of luck.

Journals should be about more than just getting on "a journal". The system could easily make it more possible to get you on the journal you want by taking away the need for so much hedging to ensure you're on a journal.

User avatar
bgdddymtty
Posts: 697
Joined: Thu Feb 11, 2010 12:59 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby bgdddymtty » Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:50 pm

And this is why vanwinkle is at Harvard instead of some TTT like UVa. :wink:

User avatar
Cavalier
Posts: 1994
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 6:13 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby Cavalier » Fri Nov 19, 2010 5:22 pm

Not everyone gets what they want in law school. See, e.g., grades and summer associate positions. If 4/5 of the class gets a journal on the first round, and the remainder are given yet another opportunity to get on a journal, that's good enough. The way you get good at Bluebooking is by, oh I don't know, reading and tabbing the Bluebook religiously before the tryout? It's not the role of the journal to teach you how to Bluebook; you should already know the rules so that the articles editors don't have even more work to do.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:27 pm

Cavalier wrote:Not everyone gets what they want in law school.

No, of course not, but that's no excuse for schools to not improve where they can. And there's no feedback at all; even after the competition was over, nobody could explain what I'd done wrong, either, because they weren't supposed to discuss scoring. I learned nothing from the competition, except that it's flawed and could clearly be done better.

I'll let this die though, my point has been made. And as I said earlier, this is a rare sore spot for me. In general I was very happy about my UVA experience overall, and this is the only place I'll publically disagree on anything that's done there.

User avatar
YCrevolution
Posts: 4714
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:25 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby YCrevolution » Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:33 pm

..

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:37 pm

YCrevolution wrote:Secret for current 1Ls: VTR picked too many LR people this past year (who left for LR once they got accepted) and thus will likely be bringing on a much higher-than-usual number of people from the jounral tryout competition.

See, it's stuff like this that starts it. Then people start talking about it and going "I'm going to apply for VTR because they'll be taking a lot of people!" "Me too!" Suddenly it's the most bid-on journal and has to turn 2/3 of the applicants away, and they all wasted their bid on a journal they weren't that interested in anyway in the hopes it'd be a "safety" bid for them.

Sigh. I said I'd stop. I'll stop.

User avatar
YCrevolution
Posts: 4714
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 1:25 am

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby YCrevolution » Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:40 pm

..

User avatar
RVP11
Posts: 2774
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:32 pm

Re: UVA 2L taking questions

Postby RVP11 » Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:58 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
YCrevolution wrote:Secret for current 1Ls: VTR picked too many LR people this past year (who left for LR once they got accepted) and thus will likely be bringing on a much higher-than-usual number of people from the jounral tryout competition.

See, it's stuff like this that starts it. Then people start talking about it and going "I'm going to apply for VTR because they'll be taking a lot of people!" "Me too!" Suddenly it's the most bid-on journal and has to turn 2/3 of the applicants away, and they all wasted their bid on a journal they weren't that interested in anyway in the hopes it'd be a "safety" bid for them.

Sigh. I said I'd stop. I'll stop.


I think you give 1Ls too much credit. Most of them try to cram into certain journals (VJIL) for the "prestige," thinking a non-LR journal will actually make a difference come interview time. So it's pretty consistent that VJIL is the hardest to get and VELJ/VaSE/VJOLT are the easiest. Everything else varies, but not to an outrageous degree.

The fact that you bid on two journals makes things easy: pick one of the so-called harder ones, and pick VELJ/VaSE/VJOLT as your second. If you're half-decent at bluebooking you'll get VELJ/VaSE/VJOLT, at the very least. And since journals other than LR don't really make much of a difference for jobs, you'll be fine. The secondary journals are charades of guilt-free resume padding.
Last edited by RVP11 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 8:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.




Return to “Ask a Law Student / Graduate”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], Stannis the Mannis and 1 guest