bernie shmegma wrote:
As always, Thank you for responding to the previous questions. As all of your responses have been, I find them consistently useful for my own reference. I would imagine it will help many TLSers now and in the future. I apologize in advance, for I am about to get specific and slightly ahead of myself now, but I feel I should ask these things.
Just out of curiosity if you don't mind me asking: Where are you living? South towards RU main campus or East toward NY? How long does the commute take you? Would you say a 45 minute drive/NJ transit to light rail commute is too long to manage for law school? Do you leave your stuff at school in the lockers or do you find you have to take everything back and forth because of your commute? I wonder when the earliest time to request our schedule track is, where we locate the necessary forms, and if they divulge who the professors will be for each track when signing up?
Last and final question of this series (a bit random). Have you heard of anyone's experience or personally been to an alumni event/fundraiser as a current student? How does the school do with hooking law students up with Alumni in areas of practice of interest, whether to talk about their career, just make a contact, or to actually try to get a job or externship?
@Abrikos--No RSVP necessary to watch the appellate arguments.
@bernie--the pics you posted of the school were pretty good. I've never been in any other RU building, aside from occasional visits the Robeson center to go to Starbucks, and Blumenthal hall for parking/registrar services.
I live east of the school right by NYC. If I drive my commute in the morning is 25-30 min and that includes a bit morning rush hour right at the Newark exit and right around the campus.
If I take train it's pretty much the same 20 min to Newark Penn stat, 5 min on the LIght rail and a 2 minute walk (or a 10 min walk from Newark Penn stat to the school)
I can't say for sure how much is too much of a commute for you. It really depends on the type of person you are. If you are not a good manager of time, and procrastinate you may want to choose to live closer. If you plan on doing all of your studying at the school you may want to consider living closer. If you're the type that can leave school and either finish all of your work before you leave, or you have the discipline to do your work at home then the commute may not bother you. I do know a few people that live further out in the suburbs and have a 30-45 min commute, and I know people that live in burroughs of NYC that give them a 40+ min commute. I think your personal style will help you make the best decision. You know yourself, and you know if you are going to get yourself up and going and be in class on time, everyday.
First semester you will have 4 text books not including LRW books, and any supplements required for your classes. You will most likely end up keeping your books in your locker, except to take them home. The books are fairly large, and heavy so carrying all of them home is not an easy task. Most people figured out a way to study a bit after class so they could leave 1 or 2 books in the locker, and then maybe take 1 or 2 books home. Again, you'll have to figure out a plan for carrying your books back and forth but the locker is nice to have because during the day you have somewhere to drop your stuff off so you don't have to lug it around during lunch, or if you go to the gym, or if you just want to take a load off.
You'll get your track sign up soon. It will only let you request early or late tracks. Early track is I,II, III and Late track is IV, V, VI. You won't get to pick your specific track just early/late. After you are assigned a track you will get the information with your track and your section. The tracks are about 30 people and are further divided into sections of about 15 people. so Track I will have secitions 1 and 2 all the way down to Track VI that has sections 11 and 12. The tracks will determine which professors you have for Torts, Crim, Contracts, Property, the section will determine which professor you have for LRW. Your section of 30 will also be together for a "small section" class, meaning one of your substantive classes will only have 30 people. The other 3 classes can have 60-90. So everyone in Track I will have all the same professors, but half of your track will have one LRW prof and half of you will have another LRW prof. Tracks can also be combined in groups of 2 or 3 for your substantive classes. None of this really matter because it's all out of your control, and it makes very little sense until you show up for class and figure it out.
Personally, I have more "mentors" and "buddies" and law pals then I can manage. Every week I'm getting an email from some other legal professional, or from some group that I signed up for fall semester asking me about classes, asking if I want to go to lunch, and talking about summer jobs. There is no shortage of mentors at Rutgers. I am shocked at the number of 1Ls that don't take part in some of the mentorship opportunities offered. I think people don't realize the value. For every student group on campus there is an associated legal professional/alumni/networking opportunity that goes with it. During the fall there will be a different student group meeting every week. I encourage you to attend as many as possible (eat their free food, drink their free booze) but sign up with a mentor. Also don't underestimate the importance of hooking up with a 2L and 3L. They can give you lots of tips on classes, professors, offer outlines,study advice, job search and course options.