Friday, May 20, 2022

Summer Plans

I truly cannot believe how fast this year has gone. As cliché as it sounds, it really feels like just yesterday I was walking on to campus for the first time trying to pretend like I knew where I was going. This past year, I’ve learned so much both in and outside of my classes. Truthfully, I learned more about myself in this past year than I ever have. I learned how I handle pressure, how I deal with living so far away from my family, and how I tackle new challenges. And I’ve learned what I am most passionate about, and I cannot wait to spend this summer and beyond doing the work that I love. 

This summer, I will be working at the Los Angeles Public Defenders office as a summer law clerk. I’m not sure which office I will be working in yet, but I am hoping to work in the appellate or immigration division. No matter which division I am placed in, I am so happy for the opportunity to work in public defense, and I am hopeful that this will lead to even more opportunities in the future. 

Before I came to law school, I hadn’t looked into criminal law as a potential career field at all, but after taking Criminal Law my first semester, I found myself more interested in that than any other field of law I had looked in to. From there, I talked to my career counselor who gave me tips on where I could find summer openings. I also started attending Criminal Law Society events and meetings where I learned interview skills and other criminal law opportunities at Loyola and in L.A. 

Without all of the help and resources I found at Loyola, I may not have realized public defense is the field of law I am most passionate about, and I may not have secured this summer position. It is crazy to even think that soon I’ll be finished with my 1L year and working as a law clerk this summer. Time really has flown by, but I’m so excited to continue on this journey and cannot wait to see what this summer and the next year brings. 

Thursday, May 19, 2022

The Original Social Network


Hello again, Jury of Peers!

There are 2 kinds of people in law school: people like one of my friends who love to network, and people like me who find networking extremely daunting. It’s not that I don’t like to meet new people and make new friends in the industry, it’s just that I’m shy. I know, it’s a word not often associated with lawyer-types, but we exist! So, if you’re a shy person who wants to go to law school let me hand down a few nuggets of wisdom about how to build a network when you’re shy (or just bad at networking). 

Tip 1: Phone a Friend

A great way to network without feeling so awkward is to go to events with a friend. Whether or not they love to network, going to events with a friend gives me a social respite where I can relax for the moments in between actively networking. 

Tip 2: Home-Field Advantage

Loyola actually hosts quite a few networking events on campus, both mixers and speaking events. Sometimes just being in a familiar environment can ease the stress of networking, so going to events on campus can make networking more bearable. 

Tip 3: Have a Job to Do

This tip is not for everyone, but personally, I find networking to be easier when there is a common goal or an external reason why you are connecting with new people. For example, I was doing an informational interview with an attorney who told me he did most of his networking in law school by being on the board of a club and planning speaking events. Fast forward to my 2L year, I ran for speaker chair on DSBA (student gov’t) so that I had an external reason to reach out to attorneys I thought were really cool. Asking them to come speak to campus is a great way to bring attorneys to the home-field (see: tip 2) and create a common goal you both are working towards: a successful speaking event.

To be frank, my in-person networking skills have atrophied during the Zoom Era but that’s not to say there aren’t advantages to zoom networking too. One major advantage is that you get to be in your own environment which can be soothing. Another is that the interactions tend to be more intentional since most people can’t stumble into Zoom rooms the way you can stumble into an in-person event. 

My favorite event that I have been to was actually on Zoom my 2L year: Women in Big Law. It was a small group of women talking about the troubles and the triumphs of being a woman in law. It felt very intimate even though we were all dispersed throughout the country. And it was a great way to meet lawyers that normally would be geographically hard to reach.

Any way you want to network is good, especially when you’re just starting out. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there because 9 times out of 10, it will be a positive experience. 

See you in the next one (for my very last post ever!), 

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Summer Plans

This summer, I have an internship with a local organization in Los Angeles. I was able to get this job through the Loyola on-campus interview program earlier this semester. 

I’m excited to step out of the classroom and put the skills I’ve learned this semester to use by helping the organization and working on real cases. 

The great thing about 1L at Loyola is you spend a lot of time learning the foundations of what you will need in your first summer job. After spending almost a full year focusing on legal research and writing, I feel confident in my ability to help the organization conduct research that will help the senior attorneys in their work. 

Beyond research and writing, the broad scope of classes we take in 1L allow us to have a strong base of learning about different court procedures, local laws, and how we can apply those to help wherever we are working reach an answer to whatever issue they need help solving. 

Because Loyola has such a large reach in Los Angeles, I was also able to speak with someone who has worked at the organization where I will be working. They were able to give me advice on how best to serve the organization and the greater community as a whole. It made me really excited for the summer and getting the practical, real life experience that will best prepare me for 2L and beyond! 

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Summer Plans

I cannot believe my first year of law school is coming to an end! Reflecting on all the things I have learned and experienced thus far, I am so proud of all of us! One of the most daunting experiences was oral arguments, but I lived to tell the tale. It wasn’t as bad as I thought, and I actually had fun. I used to hear about grad students writing lengthy papers and all the reading they had to do, and I thought, “I could never.” Yet, here we are and yes I could! It has been a very challenging experience, but I keep reminding myself it is worth it. It’s important to find something to look forward to, so currently I am looking forward to my summer internship! I am excited to apply the skills I have been developing and to learn more about real-life practice. 

I will be working full time this summer, so I don’t want to overwhelm myself with summer classes, but I am considering it. I also really want to spend time with my friends and family, because it has been hard to do that throughout the semester. Otherwise, I don’t have any set plans for the summer. I think I want to take it as it comes and try my best to enjoy it before 2L. Part of me wishes I would have enjoyed my free time prior to law school, because there’s so much to do all the time, but again I know my hard work will be worth it. At some point at the beginning of the school year, someone told me, “During 1L they scare you to death, during 2L they work you to death, and during 3L they bore you to death.” I can’t say much about 2L and 3L, but at times I was scared to death this year LOL. I think we all were, because we didn’t know what to expect but Loyola has been such a welcoming place with a lot of great people. 

Monday, May 16, 2022

Networking & CDO Opportunities

Loyola provides many opportunities to network and to learn more about the different areas of law. As I mentioned in a previous blog, Loyola has many student organizations and groups that represent many ethnicities and the different areas of law (for more information on student groups, see this link: https://studentaffairs.lls.edu/student-organizations). The 2L’s and 3L’s in a student group will inform and give advice to the 1L’s about what that area of law entails. The student groups will disseminate information about student opportunities and networking events. The student groups also organize guest speaker events with professors and attorneys to give insight into their areas of expertise and to answer questions that students may have. For example, during the fall 2021 semester, I attended an event hosted by Consumer Law Society, where a guest speaker attorney gave an inspiring talk about perseverance and gave us networking tips. He recommended writing handwritten notes because they stand out and are memorable. Last month, I attended an intellectual property panel organized by the Intellectual Property & Cybersecurity Law Society. I heard from current Loyola professors and attorneys about trademark, copyright, and patent law. As a bonus and an incentive for students to attend, a lot of these guest speaker events will provide lunch for attendees.  

Loyola also has an awesome career development office. All the counselors are very friendly and work closely with all students in helping us draft our resumes and cover letters when we are applying to our first summer jobs. The career development office has set up very helpful workshops to give students advice on resumes and interview skills, and hosted informational panels about summer and career opportunities. Loyola also uses “Symplicity,” which is a portal for students to access information about potential employment opportunities and applications. The career development office often updates the portals with new listings and frequently notifies students when new opportunities arise. 

Overall, there’s been many opportunities for students to network, to learn more about areas of law, and to pursue employment. It’s up to us to seize these opportunities. Don’t be shy or let anything hold you back. Attend as many events as you can, because you won’t regret it. 


Friday, May 6, 2022

Advice on Network and Career Opportunities

ADVICE ON NETWORK AND CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

As I said before, Loyola’s network is solid! And for those interested in PI work, there’s a lot of opportunities. 

First, I would take part in the Public Interest Career Day (PICD)! It’s hosted in February 2022 and provides a great opportunity to get in touch with nonprofit organizations you’d like to work with and earn interviews. 

I would also suggest speaking to professors and faculty on campus for research opportunities. There’s quite a few who are always looking for students to undertake research for. 

I also can’t stress enough the importance of joining clubs on campus. As someone who’s part of three (BLSA, DSBA, and CLS), I can say with utmost certainty that I’ve been able to meet new people and make connections thanks to these clubs. 

Also don’t be afraid to reach out to professors, alumni, faculty, and other students just to speak. Everyone on campus is more than welcome to speak about opportunities. And I can assure you, they’ll have a lot of insight about their experiences in the legal field. 

As I write this post (mid-March), I’ll be applying for clinics, trial advocacy, and possible externships for the fall. Don’t stress too much about these things during your fall semester; the time will come to discuss these and apply. Just focus on finishing your first semester of law school during the fall. 

And IF there is a Barrister during your law school years, go to it. 

From personal experience, law school does take up a good chunk of your life. Literally speaking, it IS your life for three years.

If there’s ever an opportunity to know your peers outside of a school setting, Take the opportunity. It’ll be fun, and besides, what else do you have to do on a Friday night? I mean, this year, it’s Wednesday night, but we don’t have class the next day. So…

Last thing. Don’t limit yourself to just one opportunity or field.

Be open to any and everything, because that’s how you’ll find out what area of law you’re truly interested in. Even if it doesn’t sound appealing at first, just go for it. You never know where that interest will take you.

And just as you’ll find out as well, the areas of law are more connected than you may think. A housing internship may lead you to a Big Law opportunity down the road. Or a writing class you take now could be useful to you when you enter tax law.

You just never know.

Anyways, have fun with this. Law school is exciting, fruitful, and very rewarding if you follow your heart and do what makes you happy.

You got this. 

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Networking and CDO Opportunities

When I first came to law school, I had no idea how anything in the legal field worked. I knew I needed to secure an internship for my summer after 1L, but I didn’t know where to start to get one and wasn’t completely sure which area of law I wanted to practice. Luckily, organizations on campus and the Career Development Office have so many events to help students with this problem. 

My favorite event I attended so far was a student-run panel for the Criminal Law Society. At this event, Loyola students who have worked in the criminal law field answered questions and gave advice to the attendees to help us secure an internship. They gave tips on how to apply, who to talk to, what working at specific offices will be like, and how to do well in an interview. Before I went to this event, I had scheduled an interview with the Los Angeles Public Defenders Office. This was my first real job interview, and I was so nervous. The students on the panel answered my questions and gave me tips on how the interview would do and eased the concerns I had. They also sent us their emails so we could connect with them should we have any more questions. It was a wonderful way to learn more about the field and internships as well as get in touch with students who will be working in the field in the future.

Almost every day there is some event going on during the lunch hour that involves networking or learning about the different areas of law. There are also events where guest speakers like practicing lawyers or even judges will talk to students about their experiences. The career development office also puts on events to help with resume building, looking for internships, how to network, and more. Going to these events has really helped ease my concerns about both getting an internship as well as a job after law school.