Bear with me, this has been years for me coming. To those who passed:
Congratulations to all who have passed!
You’ve done those around you, and (most importantly) yourselves
proud. Celebrate accordingly, you all have earned it! From what I know about Character and Fitness, it’s smooth sailing from here on out (barring something major), so don’t do anything stupid between now and that swear-in in Albany/Buffalo/NYC.
Special congratulations for foreign takers who've passed. To come into a foreign country, immersing yourselves in a peculiar system, writing in what's (for some) a second language, on one of the hardest tests in the world, while persevering is no joke. Take a well-deserved bow!
Also special congrats to the retakers who have passed this time. You are an inspiration to us all, and remind us that slaying the dragon is doable. I didn’t pass for NY (UBE:260, MBE:142.7), but I got enough for one of my “Plan B” states. That I can legitimately say "I will be an attorney," effective Summer 2018 is beyond unreal (it's just a matter of where, even though I'm still taking Feb
). All that work has finally paid off. To those who did not pass this go around:
It's not over. Your time is coming.
I’m also there with you. I’ve felt disappointed, while (even now) second-guessing what I would’ve done to score higher. It’s not fun, and even more so with another few months to spend on the bar exam. No matter how many times you've take it, not passing still sucks the same. I'll be taking it again in February, with some wondering (rightly) why, when I could easily ‘declare victory’ and move on. My life story tells me, persistence pays off:
My parents wanted me to be a doctor, to the point of paying for my undergrad (in-state tuition was dirt cheap). I even got into a program where all I had to was maintain a C average and I would’ve gotten a free ride through medical school. I flunked out of that by going to a UN internship (that had no future benefit), and almost failed out of undergrad – I had no interest. I could’ve just given up, or even quit school altogether. Instead, I figured out what really wanted to do - be an attorney - and did what was necessary to get into law school.
I go to law school thinking it was “Undergrad 2.0,” studying accordingly. I flunked out, coming back home in shame and disgrace. I tried various jobs. I got into an engineering program at my undergrad. I even met a woman who I almost married. I could’ve quit the whole “legal thing” and done something else. Instead, I eventually reapplied to the very institution that failed me out; by some miracle, I got in.
Upon graduating, I took my law school state’s bar exam, studying for it like any other law school test; I failed it. I then wrote the NY exam (it was cheaper and didn’t have CoF attached to the exam application) after that. I flunked that too, followed by a nasty cycle of “spend money-fail exam-spend money.” All while having a shaky job and financial situation (although that’s now stabilized). With much of my extra money going to exam costs, the easy thing would’ve been to stop altogether and get everything else in order first. But knowing that meant indefinite postponement, I kept going and here I am.
Even for July's exam, I thought I had it together. I ended up not studying as much for the MEE, but at least I went in confident with my MBE prep. But while typing, I inadvertently switched my keyboard to Greek…on ESSAY #2. Thanks to ExamSoft’s restrictions, the next 10 minutes were spent figuring out how to switch it back to English; my essay timing was fucked. I could’ve given up then too and walked out (or gone home on MBE Day as some did). Instead, I outlined my remaining answers, which later kept my already destroyed written score from being worse. I also kept my wits together for MBE Day, and it went as expected.
It’s not a matter of being smart/stupid (being a “gifted” student, my going through the above was very "humbling"). It's an exam. The bar exam doesn't ask where you're from/who you are/what your story is. It can be beat. Remember: Failure doesn’t define you, but what you do after does
Everyone, from Olympic sprinters, to the average (non-paralyzed) Joe/Jane on the street, began walking as stumbling babies. That’s a lot of falling. Even as walkers, we fall once in a while. But we get up and move on, not dwelling on when we were on the ground. It’s the American way. That’s how we New Yorkers work. No excuses - just keep it moving
When you do come back to this thread, some of you’ll get plenty of advice. But you MUST
do these three things:
1. Know how far you really are from the goal
(It's more than just knowing the # of points to pass next time)
2. Make a plan to get there
(It’s not just saying: “I’ll study ______ more”)
3. Actually do it
(Just going through the motions/increased studying until Feb. won't cut it)
If you do ALL of the three, you’ll be celebrating in April 2018 (or beyond).
You now have a more than a month where you can properly grieve and figure out what to do. Presuming you decide to continue, effective December 1st, GET UP – KEEP IT MOVING. You There's a great community of people here, and I already love it here. I'll be around. Feel free to PM me if you have a questions/suggestions. After all, we're al effectively future colleagues in the profession.
PS: Sorry for the long post, but I'm feeling really inspired right now. Just paying it back