William & Mary

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Mon Feb 22, 2010 7:03 pm

Dostoevsky wrote:Firstly, thank you for being so helpful with your answers to questions.
I've been admitted to W&M and USC and am having a tough time figuring out what to do.
I'm still in undergrad and was planning on coming to ASW at W&M but without any kind of travel stipend it is going to cost about $800 to visit from California for 5-6 days (was thinking about looking at houses too).
I guess I'm really looking to minimize stress in law school and related vocational pursuits and it seems like the honor code at W&M would really help with that, although the alumni network at USC might, too.

I know this is a W&M thread but I would appreciate any insight that you might be able to give.


Which coast are you planning on practicing? W&M is great if you want to be mid-atlantic/DC, but if you want to stay out in Cali, it may be easier to go to USC. Not that W&M doesn't send people back to Cali, but I'm not entirely sure if it's worth it even though W&M is a lot less expensive.

MPeterson
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Re: William & Mary

Postby MPeterson » Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:32 pm

Hey Texas,

Do you know anything about the Con Law at W&M? I know there's some sort of Institute of Bill of Rights Law, but what exactly does that do?


Thanks!

Laurenm1024
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Re: William & Mary

Postby Laurenm1024 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 1:07 am

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Last edited by Laurenm1024 on Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:20 pm

MPeterson wrote:Hey Texas,

Do you know anything about the Con Law at W&M? I know there's some sort of Institute of Bill of Rights Law, but what exactly does that do?


Thanks!


I heard Con Law was a specialty here before I came. I'm not sure I can vouch for that yet. IBRL is also somewhat of a mystery. I know they do research and stuff like that. They also co-sponsor a spring symposium with the Election Law Scoiety. I definitely think if you are interested in Con Law, there are plenty of course offerings to choose from. Sorry I can't be of more help.

unbeknownst
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Re: William & Mary

Postby unbeknownst » Mon Mar 01, 2010 7:03 pm

I don't know if this is allowed but is anyone going to ASW by way of DC? I don't have a car.

laureng05
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Re: William & Mary

Postby laureng05 » Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:56 am

I think this was discussed briefly, but can anyone tell me what the parking situation is like? I'm definitely not going to be living within walking distance, so is it really hard to find parking close to class? What do you do if the lot is filled up? I know this is sort of a silly concern, but I live in DC so I'm so over searching for parking spaces for hours. Thanks!

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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Fri Mar 05, 2010 12:53 pm

laureng05 wrote:I think this was discussed briefly, but can anyone tell me what the parking situation is like? I'm definitely not going to be living within walking distance, so is it really hard to find parking close to class? What do you do if the lot is filled up? I know this is sort of a silly concern, but I live in DC so I'm so over searching for parking spaces for hours. Thanks!


If you buy a parking pass there is always space in the student lot, it may not always be as close as you might like though :). I know some people who just try to find street parking, personally I think it's really dumb and pretty much all of them have gotten tickets because the parking police are ridiculous. Just shell out the 300 bucks for a pass and then you don't have to worry about it.

crazy
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Re: William & Mary

Postby crazy » Fri Mar 05, 2010 1:05 pm

1L here, I was wondering what you guys think of the quality of the TA's? Do you find them accessible and helpful?

laureng05
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Re: William & Mary

Postby laureng05 » Fri Mar 05, 2010 1:33 pm

thanks for the info! i'll definitely be buying a parking pass, and i don't mind walking a bit to class, although hopefully it's not more than half a mile.

dark
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Re: William & Mary

Postby dark » Fri Mar 05, 2010 6:25 pm

crazy wrote:1L here, I was wondering what you guys think of the quality of the TA's? Do you find them accessible and helpful?


1L as in soon to be 1L? Current 1L at WM? Or as in you might transfer for your 2L year?

As for TAs, I think they are helpful for the most part, if not just to hear some of the material explained a second time and to have another chance to ask questions. How helpful depends a bit on the TA though, one of my 1st semester TAs didn't give me any useful advice for how to make an outline for the course b/c he claimed he had just gone in with a couple pages of handwritten notes rather than outline.

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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:47 pm

laureng05 wrote:thanks for the info! i'll definitely be buying a parking pass, and i don't mind walking a bit to class, although hopefully it's not more than half a mile.


haha no, definitely not. i went to a really big undergrad so when people said the parking was far at the beginning of this year i laughed at them. it's mainly just annoying on the days you have to dress up (for interviews or whatever) and of course have to park all the way in the back :).

crazy wrote:1L here, I was wondering what you guys think of the quality of the TA's? Do you find them accessible and helpful?


Personally I haven't found many of mine helpful. It's not always their fault though. Last semester one of our profs refused to talk to our TA or give her any idea where we were going in the class and he hadn't taught the class in 10 years so she had no idea what to go over.

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Displeased
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Re: William & Mary

Postby Displeased » Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:48 pm

I have no idea how anybody could complain about the law school parking. There's always a spot and the lot is less than 2 minutes from the front door of the school. Compared to my undergrad, and any other university I've ever visited, the parking is a dream. It helps that the law school is located several blocks from the main campus, so nobody except law students has any reason to be parked in the law school lot.

TAs are a good source of outlines, but the review sessions tend to be a waste of time. Some people go to them religiously, but I stopped going by the end of first semester. In my experience, many of the TAs tend to have a surprisingly tenuous grasp of the material, or they focus on the wrong things, or they have no idea how far along in the syllabus the class is. I think its more beneficial to spend an hour reading the casebook than an hour at a review session, but then again, everybody learns differently.

In response to the question about reducing stress in law school...I don't know if the honor code is really responsible for reducing stress, but I do get the sense that W&M has lower stress levels in general than most law schools. I have no empirical evidence to base that on, but I think W&M is largely stress-free as far as law schools go.

I think a lot of that is because of the quality and kindness of our professors. Some of them are absolute carebears and will do everything they can to turn cold calling into a pleasant experience. Even some of the crueler profs will temper their smackdowns with a heavy dose of humor. Of course, class stops being truly stressful by around the midpoint of first semester, but it helps to be able to go to class without fearing painful cold callings.

The real stressors are the job hunt, exams, and (I imagine) the upcoming journal competition. Its very easy to get caught up comparing the progress of your job hunt with that of your classmates (OMG his summer job is slightly more prestigious than mine! I'm a terrible person!), but there's really no sense of competition. At least, in my experience everyone is very supportive, even when we actually are competing with each other (moot court, exams etc).

sladegalute
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Re: William & Mary

Postby sladegalute » Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:39 am

I was wondering if anyone has a schedule for Admitted Students weekend or if any of the students who are attending could post approximately what the schedule was like when they visited? Thanks

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APHill
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Re: William & Mary

Postby APHill » Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:42 am

Dude, the schedule is on W&M admitted students webpage. It all starts at 7 PM on Friday and 9 AM on Sat. Af you show up at these times I am sure there will be a schedule, which appears to be a lot of fun - meeting with professors, lunch, schools tour.

I am coming to the ASW from Richmond VA, around 5:30-6 PM on Friday. If anyone wants to carpool or needs a ride lemme know.

unbeknownst
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Re: William & Mary

Postby unbeknownst » Thu Mar 25, 2010 11:17 am

See you all tomorrow! I have a feeling I will really like this school.

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Xanadu
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Re: William & Mary

Postby Xanadu » Fri Mar 26, 2010 4:05 am

I have been placed on the waiting list. I will be sending in an LOCI and a recommendation from my current employer (I did not have this job when I applied in November.)

I also will be visiting the school in April (I'm going to be in the area anyway).

Does anyone have advice about how to get off the waitlist? Do you current students happen to know anyone who did get off the waitlist and attend the school now?

William and Mary is my first choice, but I don't know if I have a good chance of getting off the waitlist.

Thanks for your time!

sladegalute
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Re: William & Mary

Postby sladegalute » Sun Mar 28, 2010 4:55 pm

Anyone have any thoughts from ASW? I was there and really enjoyed the visit and school. I thought a large portion of the student representatives were heading towards government and public-interest law jobs, anyone get a sense of it it was by choice or necessity?

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APHill
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Re: William & Mary

Postby APHill » Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:33 pm

my host said he does not imagine himself being in biglaw, he wanted to be a music industry lawyer and this summer he has a 1L internship at a GC of a music company.

Another guy said he always wanted to do PI but it was hard to get so now he is doing post-graduate fellowship.

Have not met a single biglaw type. They were probably at home studying.

dark
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Re: William & Mary

Postby dark » Sun Mar 28, 2010 9:04 pm

APHill wrote:Have not met a single biglaw type. They were probably at home studying.


They exist. I know some 3Ls going to prominent firms in DC, Boston, Newark and NYC. I also know a number of students trying to position themselves for that sort of thing. Its been much more difficult to get considered for "big law" opportunities since the economy turned, but I suspect that's true for most other law schools and their placements as well.

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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Sun Mar 28, 2010 11:18 pm

I'm going to concur with dark on the Biglaw comment and repeat what was said in the panel I was on. We are placing students in all kinds of jobs, but summer jobs (especially for 1Ls) are seeing a lot more unpaid, government and public service positions. However, this is not some scary W&M exclusive phenomenon. It's true at all schools (at least in the approximate range that we are in and lower). If you visit somwhere similarly ranked they tell you something different, they are lying. The only way you are going to see a "guaranteed" biglaw opportunity when you graduate is if you are in the top half of your class at Harvard or Yale. But OCS here is awesome and if you are willing to work at it you will get something you will be happy with.

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Snowdrifter
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Re: William & Mary

Postby Snowdrifter » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:13 am

Thanks to the numerous regulars posting in the W&M thread. You have been very helpful in providing a full range of information about the law school experience at this particular school. Coupled with my fairly-recent visit, I think I am formulating a solid picture about the experience in general. :D

I have a couple... less serious questions, if I may:

1) I have a friend at W&M undergrad who believes that W&M is a total geek campus. Would you say that perception translates well to the law school as well? I did overhear a few people discussing Call of Duty prior to my tour... Haha! 8)

2) So, I've also heard that W&M is overrun with liberals, but that was from a very conservative source, so I'm not sure what to make of that, per se. I know that some law schools tend to lean in one direction more than others.... (AU to the left, W&L to the right, for instance) I'm fairly moderate, but I suppose everyone thinks they are moderate... I come from University of Colorado, so I guess you can probably make educated guesses about my affiliation, though. ;)

sladegalute
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Re: William & Mary

Postby sladegalute » Mon Mar 29, 2010 9:22 am

[quote="Snowdrifter"]
I have a couple... less serious questions, if I may:

1) I have a friend at W&M undergrad who believes that W&M is a total geek campus. Would you say that perception translates well to the law school as well? I did overhear a few people discussing Call of Duty prior to my tour... Haha! 8)


Although I am not a student there yet I was at admitted student weekend. I felt like the people around me were very nerdy (although this is an anecdotal experience). I come from UVA undergrad and even with that my first comment to everyone I have talked to since then was that I was worried about this. That being said I seemed to meet a lot of "normal" people at the reception and in the panel discussions. In the end I came away with the impression that it was a mix as I suspect it would be at most law schools ranked this high.

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84Sunbird2000
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Re: William & Mary

Postby 84Sunbird2000 » Mon Mar 29, 2010 3:30 pm

Snowdrifter wrote:Thanks to the numerous regulars posting in the W&M thread. You have been very helpful in providing a full range of information about the law school experience at this particular school. Coupled with my fairly-recent visit, I think I am formulating a solid picture about the experience in general. :D

I have a couple... less serious questions, if I may:

2) So, I've also heard that W&M is overrun with liberals, but that was from a very conservative source, so I'm not sure what to make of that, per se. I know that some law schools tend to lean in one direction more than others.... (AU to the left, W&L to the right, for instance) I'm fairly moderate, but I suppose everyone thinks they are moderate... I come from University of Colorado, so I guess you can probably make educated guesses about my affiliation, though. ;)


I'm very, very far to the left and I got the impression that it is fairly moderate, maybe a very small tick to the left compared to most Americans. Of course, left in American perception is probably center on the total scale of political ideologies.

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texas08
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Re: William & Mary

Postby texas08 » Mon Mar 29, 2010 3:58 pm

Snowdrifter wrote:1) I have a friend at W&M undergrad who believes that W&M is a total geek campus. Would you say that perception translates well to the law school as well? I did overhear a few people discussing Call of Duty prior to my tour... Haha!


Apparently, within Virginia, W&M undergrad is where all the supernerds in your high school class went. I don't think that translates exactly to the law school, but I would agree with the comment that at any school ranked this high or higher there are going to be a good number who are definitely on the nerdy side. That being said though, there are a good number of us who go out regularly, play intramurals and generally just do stuff outside of school on a regular basis.

Snowdrifter wrote:2) So, I've also heard that W&M is overrun with liberals, but that was from a very conservative source, so I'm not sure what to make of that, per se. I know that some law schools tend to lean in one direction more than others.... (AU to the left, W&L to the right, for instance) I'm fairly moderate, but I suppose everyone thinks they are moderate... I come from University of Colorado, so I guess you can probably make educated guesses about my affiliation, though.


W&M is a pretty good mix and overall I would call it moderate. But I definitely know a few really conservative people as well as some uber-liberal people, I think no matter what you will find people in your range of political views.

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Padimud
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Re: William & Mary

Postby Padimud » Mon Apr 05, 2010 10:43 am

Officially committed and Virginia bound. My question is regarding Health Insurance as I know the school requires you have it. Is it generally thought better to go with the school's insurance plan or to go with an outside carrier? I will be moving their with my family but want to know for a student what is thought to be the best way to go about it? Thanks.




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