Thursday, December 2, 2021

How was your summer, man?

Yeah, my summer before 1L went by faster than I thought. Before I knew it, I was sitting in my 8:00AM Civil Procedure class learning about “Due Process” and notice. Ugh.

But in the three months leading up to law school, I can say with confidence that I did absolutely nothing over the summer.



That’s a slight exaggeration… I did a few things.

I worked part-time as an auditor and made some dough. I attended my graduation ceremony literally several months ago (Claremont McKenna College, Class of 2021). I also reunited with my longtime best buddy after 11 years. Who, by the way, now has a beautiful wife and baby boy!

And maybe—just maybe—I had one-too-many martinis to drink while riding a flamingo floatie in the lazy river of a San Diego resort.

So, yeah, I did some things. But none of those things were dedicated towards preparing for law school.

I didn’t learn how to case brief.

I didn’t read books on mastering exams and midterms.

And I didn’t listen to podcasts or watch any videos that would prepare me for seemingly the next three years of my life…

But the truth is, you don’t have to do those things. In fact, you can—and should—enjoy your summer in any way you see fit. It doesn’t have to be a vacation in Cancun, or a spontaneous backpacking trip through Europe. Enjoying summer can also be watching Anime with your cat; hitting the gym; or even playing Call of Duty: Cold War with the bros.

^^^ That was 95% of my summer, by the way.

Point is, law school will come eventually. And you’ll be more prepared than you think when the time comes. But if I could offer any advice on what you should do before law school arrives, do the 1st week of readings the week before class begins. Trust me, you’ll thank me later.

But aside from that. Enjoy your summer. Do what you love, and love what you do. Because that will be worth it in the long run.

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Distance

1,568 miles. This is what stands between me and everyone I’ve ever known. Over the summer, this distance weighed on me, and I started thinking of everything I would miss when I moved to L.A. I knew that moments together would be few and far between when I started law school so far away, so I decided I was going to make that last summer count.

With my friends, we made what we have called the Summer Bestie Bucket List. We stayed the night at a cabin in the woods, swam by a waterfall, explored a castle, and so much more. With my family, I couldn’t write down everything I wanted to do before I left. With them, I just wanted to savor the little things and enjoy every moment together. Anytime my family got together, we laughed a little harder, teased each other a little more, and said “I love you” often.

Last summer, most of my time was spent relishing in every moment of my last few months living near the ones I love. Maybe I’ll come to regret not spending more time preparing for 1L. The jury is still out on that one. What I do know is whenever I’m overwhelmed, I remember my cousin falling asleep in my lap as I read him a book. I remember making TikToks in a cabin in the woods with my friends, making smores by the fire, and all the late nights spent at iHOP. I remember that no matter how far away I am, they’re back home rooting for me. In times when I feel like quitting, remembering them brings a smile to my face, and I know I wouldn’t trade that last summer for the world.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

I Know What You Did Last Summer

Hello again Jury of Peers! As a returning blogger I get to tell you what I did over summer as a law student. While everyone’s summer looks a little different, today I want to tell you about something you may not hear very much about: summer classes.

I took Fundamentals of Bar Writing over summer and I can’t recommend this enough as a summer course. I am a somewhat nervous test taker and this 7-week Pass/Fail course relieved a lot of my anxieties about taking the mammoth test that is the Bar Exam.

What I found most valuable about this class was the fact that we got to do a practice essay almost every week of the class. We also peer reviewed each other’s essays which helped each of us see our weak spots and out strengths. And this is all stuff that does NOT happen in a typical bar review course. So not only did I get many extra practice essays in, I got actual feedback from other students – pretty sweet deal.

I also really enjoyed having different parts of the Bar broken down. My professor separated the multiple choice, the essays, and the performance test, and discussed strategies for all three types of skills. She explained that the Bar is not only a knowledge test but also a skills test: how can you find a rule amongst a fact pattern if none come to mind; how to approach multiple choice questions; what order you should read the performance test sections; etc.

But Fundamentals of Bar Writing is not the only course available over summer. There are lots of other bar courses and electives offered. And you might be thinking – aren’t I supposed to have a job over summer? What do you mean, school?

Some student’s work and take one or two nighttime classes over summer break. It’s definitely possible with time management. Some students take a full semester over summer so they can work during the fall semester for units. Some students take summer classes because they just have such a passion for learning they can’t do it all during the semester.

Just like summer jobs, summer classes are different experiences for everyone. So, however you choose to spend your summer, there are learning opportunities around every corner. But, that being said, use summer to also do things you like: travel, creative projects, seeing friends, etc. Summer break is a perfect time to take some self-care opportunities you don’t have during the school year. I got to focus a lot on making music and YouTube cover videos which is something I really enjoy doing in my free time. I also got to see some friends that were back in town post-lockdown. My best advice is to relish the last summer breaks you are going to have as much as possible.

See you in the next post,

Kelsey

Monday, November 29, 2021

My Summer Before Law School

I spent my summer gearing up for law school. I had heard from friends who are attorneys that 1L fall is the hardest of all the law school semester. Even though I didn’t want that to be true, I still wanted to be as prepared as possible. But I didn’t sit in my room reading law school prep books and worrying about the school year. Okay, fine, I worried a little. But I didn’t let that stop me!

Instead of holing up in my bedroom in panic mode, I did things that bring me joy. 

This summer, I read a book a week from June through the first week of August. I read fiction and poetry and non-fiction. I immersed myself into words and worlds I knew I wouldn’t have a lot of time for once the school year started. I went hiking – usually with my yellow lab who is the best hiking partner a girl could ask for. I saw moose and elk and deer (oh my!) on my hikes, and enjoyed the lush green summer in Park City, UT. I spent time with friends – over zoom and in backyards and on quick weekend trips (all covid safe) – that I wouldn’t be able to see once school started, either because of the distance between us or our mutual busy schedules. I spent time with my family – quiet mornings having coffee and discussing headlines in the news.

I didn’t want to waste away my summer – my “last summer of freedom,” my family so lovingly started saying. And I didn’t.

Now that school has started, I feel happy. Ready. Raring to go. I checked off things from my summer to-do list, did things I love with people I love, and I don’t regret a moment of it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

LLS: Environment fit for Learning

In the past years I have experienced so much life has to offer and I am grateful to God for bringing me this far. While my past experiences have opened many facets of life, for some reason, I still feel there is a world of incredible I have yet to see. I knew talking to people and teaching was a gift; to stand before students and instruct them has been my dream but what has not been clear is the kind of teacher I would like to be, until I made up my mind to join LMU Loyola Law School.

From the beginning of the application to the admission process, I was greeted with patience and humility from people with impeccable pedigree that I never could have imagined. At first, it was difficult to believe that people with this level of academic and social standing could be as nice as they were/are. But after resuming studies and attending classes for the past few weeks, I truly recognize that I have received this incredible world of academics that I have longed for many years. It has been amazing to meet with professors who are eager to see their students excel, not just in the classroom, but also in their careers! While I have had a few teachers in the past who have encouraged me, I have never experienced attending a school that has an institutional attitude of teachers wanting the best for their students. Indeed, it is incredible!

The attitude of the staff is as beautiful as the environment, making everything in Loyola fit together. From the academic staff to the administrative staff, the structural architecture and the landscape are all designed to fit in a beautiful way to provide an environment fit for learning.

If I had to choose again, I would choose LMU Loyola Law School.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Introduction

Hello all! I am super excited to be writing for the Jury of Peers again this year, and best of all, I am doing it from Los Angeles this time! It’s been a while since my last introduction (a year, to be exact), so I thought I would reintroduce myself:

My name is Xuejun, and I am an international LLM student in the process of completing the International Business Law specialisation. I spent last academic year doing the course online from over 5,000 miles away, and the nine-hour time difference meant that all my classes took place late in the evening. In fact, I had a class in my Spring semester that finished at 2 am, which, as you may imagine, did absolute wonders for my sleep schedule. However, 2 am lectures are a thing of the past for me, for I am currently typing up this post from California!

The biggest difference in attending law school this year has, obviously, been the fact that I am attending lectures in-person. Stepping on campus for the first time after spending a year learning through Zoom was great. I have never appreciated being able to make actual eye contact with my professors or sitting in the library surrounded by other students more than I do now. (I’m not going to lie though, some days I do miss not having to commute. I don’t drive, so taking the metro + bus to the university takes one-hour each way, and while I don’t mind and sometimes even enjoy taking public transportation, the ability to roll out of bed five minutes before class is due to begin will never not be amazing.)

Anyway, to wrap this all up, I am looking forward to blogging and sharing my law school experience with you all this year!

Monday, November 22, 2021

Introducing Ms. Evah

Hi folks,

I am so excited to be a Jury of Peers blogger this year! It would be very uncharacteristic of me not to be here because all I do is write. My favorite hobby is breathing life into the twenty six alphabets to tell all these tales stuck up my sleeves.

I warmly welcome you into this space. I am ecstatic to make your acquaintance.

My name is Evah. I am a thoroughbred Kenyan girl. I graduated in 2016 from Moi University, Kenya with a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B). In 2017, I enrolled for the post-graduate diploma at the Kenya School of Law. I sat for my Bar exams and I was subsequently admitted into the Kenyan Bar in 2018. I am a licensed Kenyan lawyer. For the last three years, I have been engaged in vigorous Civil and Criminal litigation.

In 2020 I decided to take a detour and enroll for an LL.M. and the pretty damn coolest thing happened when I got admitted to Loyola! I am part the chosen few who will get to undertake the Flex LL.M. This means I will complete my LL.M in three semesters instead of two. I already completed my first semester (Spring 2021) online from Kenya! Thanks to the great wicked pandemic that numbed our minds. On the bright side, it is simply amazing to experience both online and in-person! I am smack in the middle of my second semester. I am inching so close to completion.

Outside of school, I’ve got a couple of other things nosing over my hobby list. I love DIY projects, hiking, writing mundane things on my infamous blog and for the first time, I am attempting to be a long-form author. I have a 350 pages novel coming soon.

That’s it for now. I’ll tell you in advance that you and I shall have some fun on this blog.

Stay awesome. Much love!

Evah.