I started law school today... and was late to the professionalism seminar

It wasn’t my fault. They told us we could go get our new IDs during a break in orientation programming, but the location they told us was wrong. I ended up 5 minutes late for the “Professionalism Seminar”, and walked in just as the guy was talking about maintaining your reputation.

Also, it turns out you have to study for about 80-90 hours a day in law school, so my SDMB usage may decline just a mite.

Piffle… if you don’t go back in time and start reading when you were 6, you’re screwed from the start. :smiley:

Admire me on my lofty perch of wisdom… 2L baybeeeee

Just starting 3L here.

Eighty to ninety hours a day? Man, you’ve got some serious free time. I think I did about 160 hours a day in my 1L. :wink:

Just kidding. Seriously, good luck and have a great year!

I hope you all have a better time of it than I did.

And be nice to your law library circulation students! We may be undergrads or grad students, but we do know a few things about law books.
and how to hide popular books if you’re an ass

[John Houseman] Here is a dime. Take it, call your mother, and tell her there is serious doubt about you ever becoming a lawyer. [/Prof. Kingsfield]

I kid, I kid.

Dude, isn’t that classic law school behavior?

On his first day of law school, my husband locked the keys in the car. He unsuccessfully went in search of a wire hanger or similar to jimmy it open. Finally he settled for a hammer offered by a carpenter and broke out a rear window. He made it *just *in time.

So, at least it isn’t your fault. :smiley: Good luck with 1L, I’ll be in your shoes soon I hope.

(I keep meaning to get AAA or something, I think I’ll do that now that I thought of it.)

First year they scare you to death.
Second year they work you to death.
Third year they bore you to death.

So true.

No, get Better World Club; same services for cheaper and they’re eco-friendly – plus it’s a smaller company, so they pay the tow trucks more, so tow trucks are more likely to help a Better World client than a AAA client. No, they don’t pay me to shill for them – but they should!

All that aside, welcome to what may be the most intellectually rigorous, demanding, exciting and satisfying three years of your life.

For my money, lawyers ( or selected lawyers) are the most rewarding and stimulating people to fight with and play with. Law students come in a close second. Spare me a cocktail party of physicians or engineers or, God help us all, clergy.

Starting off law school with a professionalism seminar!

That’s rich, coming from an institution where the vast majority of teachers never practiced what they teach and where the highest ranked schools intentionally refuse to teach practical lawyering. Law school and the bar exam are little more than archaic fraternal hazing rituals, while the business of lawyering is learned on-the-job and on your clients’ dime.

All law school is is your ticket into the game. The Barbri review is sufficient in itself to pass the bar. So don’t sweat law school. As can be tough if not impossible, but depending on your school, Bs or Cs can be earned with essentially no effort. Forget the casebooks, and just buy yourself some nutshells or Emmanuels. And if some prof tries that Houseman BS on you, just tell him “pass.”

Of course, if you want the honor of making huge bucks working your ass off as a corporate whore in a big name law firm, by all means, bust your ass for the As and Law Review. I’m sure it will be all you might hope for.

Funny, but my experience has been nearly the opposite. I far prefer the company of people with actual knowledge about science, technology, and other things that exist and matter, over those who simply pride themselves on being opinionated and able to argue and bullshit on diverse topics.

But I can’t imagine having much to say to many members of the clergy.

The last time I talked to a lawyer at a cocktail party the discussion turned to how statistics can be used to mislead. His final word on the subject was: “Well, I feel better having numbers to go by, even if they’re wrong.”

I walked over to talk with the group of physicians, engineers and clergy…

The practice of law is, at essence, crafting arguments that successfully lead to your desired result.
Truth, accuracy, right and wrong are - at best - luxuries.
“Numbers” can be very effective in legal circles, if for no reason other than that the majority of lawyers come from LAS backgrounds and, as such, lack the ability to properly interpret/analyze them.

Next time you’re at the campus bookstore, make sure you get one of those waterproof slipcovers for your books so you can read while you’re in the shower.

Ha! Just kidding…or am I???!? (cue thunderclap & theremin music)

Num…bers? :confused:

The law exists, it matters, and it’s no cakewalk to practice it.

Law school, on the other hand, starts out insane. After first semester, you may realize that you don’t need to read all that much, especially if profs don’t have class participation as part of the grade and if you don’t plan on being in the top 10%. However, don’t slack so much that you miss ranking in the the top third, if possible.

If you plan on low-level class participation (I was the “pass king”), be advised that you should sign your name to a classroom seating chart in handwriting that does not match the handwriting you use on exams. I’ve had it suggested to me that some profs use the seating chart to circumvent anonymous grading.

No matter how many units it’s worth and no matter if it’s pass/fail, TAKE YOUR LEGAL RESEARCH AND WRITING CLASS SERIOUSLY. I did, and I am glad I did. It will help you write on your exams, and getting a good grade or special recognition in that class can open doors in the employment world. Also, take a class on state civil procedure if you plan on litigating.

Also, being late for a professionalism seminar isn’t half as bad as getting caught cheating on an ethics exam.

I really enjoyed law school and didn’t work anything close to 90 hours a week (closer to 35). I also really enjoyed the company of my classmates.*

Dinsdale does have a point though. The Paper Chase is a movie and just like other movies, say *Forrest Gump * or Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, it’s goal was to entertain, not accurately portray reality.

Still, I think his advice is incredibly unsound. Your first year is the MOST important. Grades matter incredibly. With a good first year (and the law review that might come with it) you write your ticket for summer associate positions which lead to good jobs. If you don’t like working for a big firm then go somewhere else but remember the A student has this over the C student - the A student has millions more options (clerkships, high paying jobs, or if he chooses legal aid, the PD’s office or solo practice). Don’ limit yourself. Take the practice exams and have you professor review them if that’s an option. Read. Outline. Study. I would only go to a supplement if I had questions or problems following a topic. Relying on them is unwise, IME.

A lot of your law school experience will depend on the type of school you attended. I work with hundreds of attorneys and everyone’s experience is a little different.

QFT. Knowing what you want to do with your law degree is very useful in deciding what you do while you’re in law school. I was lucky enough to get a scholarship and stipend, so I wasn’t financially tied to Big Firm Law. I wanted to work with kids, developed a joy for criminal law in my 1L year, and instead of busting my ass to do Law Review, I got a job with the PD, took summer classes so I could work more and not have a killer schedule during the year, and got a job working for them straight out of law school. Now I have great benefits and a fabulous job doing exactly what I always wanted to do–I’m a Juvenile Public Defender and it’s one of the major joys of my life.

OTOH, if you want to make big bucks, you know exactly how much work you have to put in with all the other overachievers. Just don’t work your ass off for no reason. I got Bs and As all through law school, but I didn’t so much care about the extracurriculars that required even more work! I was the secretary of our NLG chapter one year, and that’s about it. I threw all of my extra effort and energy into work in my chosen field and maintaining relationships and friendships outside of law school. It paid off greatly.

Good luck, and if you want any advice I’d be glad to throw it your way.

–Drain Bead, Class of '04

Oh yeah, and in the real world, good writing can help you win your motions based upon the brief alone without as much need for a hearing and oral argument.