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orientation wrap-up

22 August, 2008

Monday: spent ridiculous amounts of money on books.

Tuesday: listened to bunches of people tell us about law school, from professors to deans to students to current lawyers. Ran all around buying lock for locker, parking pass, and getting student ID.

Wednesday: Intro to law lectures began. Learned shiny new terms like privity of contract and controlling precedent and persuasive authority. Heard abot how I need to apply to the bar now to let them know I’m a law student and how big and scary the bar exam is. Became confused at the talks of Teply’s and Sloan’s.

Thursday: More intro to law lectures. Further discussed privity and the differences between common law/statutory interpretation/constitutional analysis. Learned that the phrase “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” prolly constitutes promotion of drug use if it’s used in a school setting (Morse v Frederick, 2007). Completely inspired by a local attorney, a current 3L, a district judge, and an Iowa Supreme Court Justice.

Friday: Toured the Iowa Supreme Court and heard from two more of the Justices as well as their clerks. Talked ethics and professionalism over lunch in a small group, and received computer training.


I have met prominent figures in the central Iowa legal community, including four of the seven Justices of the state Supreme Court. I have heard from upperclassmen and faculty, and other staff members. I have commiserated with fellow first-years. I think…I might just be ready. Bring on the classes!

9 Comments leave one →
  1. 22 August, 2008 5:31 pm

    Haha. Morse was one of the main cases for my open brief.

    That’s a pretty good intro case, but ours was cooler. In Re Converse — “Deanie on a Weanie.” A case about a crazy law student. Good times.


  2. 22 August, 2008 8:15 pm

    Wow, sounds like you actually learned things and saw cool stuff at your orientation. Mine was kind of pointless after the first day so I ended up skipping out halfway on the last two days. Haha.

  3. 22 August, 2008 10:25 pm

    Pardon me while I laugh maniacally. BWAHAHAHahahahaha!

    It’s been interesting reading your blog. It brings back memories for me. Sixteen years ago, I was starting my first year of law school.

    I wish you luck. And I mean that in all seriousness and good will. I really enjoyed law school, and hope you do, too.

    My suggestions: try to maintain some sense of perspective – it’s easy to lose it, especially during your first semester. Get your hands on a few of the good treatises and/or commercial outlines – (Emanuels (sp?) was pretty good for commercial outlines when I was in LS, and Chemerinsky’s book on Constitutional Law is a really good reference you might find useful in a number of classes – plus, it’s available in paperback from Amazon), but don’t go overboard with these. Better yet, find some nice 2L who did well in your class (with the same professor!), and borrow their outline from the previous year. Don’t wait until finals to do it. The sooner the better!

    Be sure you take a little “me time” each week – each day is better. Exercise. Find a few good classmates to study with – you’ll really want that as the semester progresses. Don’t panic. Eat sensibly – the junk food they serve on most campuses will give you an ulcer by the end of first semester if you’re not careful. I speak from experience.

    Breathe in. Breathe out.

    Oh, and here’s the most important one: have fun!

    Seriously. I mean that. Have fun. Law school is an exciting time. If it isn’t, you should probably be reconsidering your career path now, before your student loan totals get too high. Because being a law student is a hell of a lot more fun than being a lawyer, so if you’re not having fun now (well, at least after the first six weeks or so – give yourself a bit of time to adjust to the grind), you are going to be one unhappy camper when you get out into practice.

    The legal profession has one of the lowest professional satisfaction ratings out there, and has very high rates of substance abuse, depression, anxiety, divorce, and suicide. At the same time, there are plenty of people who truly love to practice law. That’s the group you want to be in. If you don’t find yourself there, consider other options. A law degree can also be a stepping stone to a number of non-law careers. Again, I speak from experience. 🙂

    Best wishes,

    jane doe, esq., recovering attorney

  4. 23 August, 2008 5:06 pm

    Nothing seems to scare you. Nice going (so far).

  5. Annie permalink
    24 August, 2008 10:57 am

    Hey Hon! Wanted to wish you luck! Miss ya, been thinking about you quite a bit. Kinda out of the loop with no internet access for me right now. Call me when you get a chance. I am home pretty much all of the time now. Miss ya, love ya!

  6. 24 August, 2008 12:34 pm

    Josh: We talked about that in a discussion of what it takes to get admitted to the bar. 🙂

    TK: Wow, I guess I’m glad they kept us busy with pretty useful stuff.

    jane: Thank you for all of the advice – it is greatly appreciated!

    Hoss: Let’s hope that keeps up!

    Annie: Thanks! Miss you lots. 🙂 I’ll call you sometime – we’re going to see you next weekend!

  7. 25 August, 2008 1:00 pm

    My thoughts are with you!
    How’s the apartment?

  8. 25 August, 2008 2:22 pm

    Thanks, Colsy! It’s good – no troubles so far. 🙂

  9. 25 August, 2008 11:11 pm

    $780 here. I feel your book pain.

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