Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Orientation to the Real World

By Yungmoon, 2E

By the time December exams were over, I felt like I had survived Navy seal training camp with my fellow classmates. I slept and ate my way into January, whereupon I discovered I had an email from the school requiring my attendance at 1E Orientation Part II. I'm sorry, did you say orientation? As a veteran 1E Spring quarter student, I felt like I had conquered case briefing, outlining, and the all-dreaded Socratic method style of questioning.

As it turns out, Orientation Part II was filled with as much helpful information as Orientation Part I. We learned about networking, professionalism, how to have a successful first conversation with someone, and we even had an opportunity to put those skills to use in an alumni networking happy hour. We also met with panels of alumni in small groups to ask frank questions about their jobs, the market, and how they obtained their positions. Rather than shying away from the current less than stellar status of the legal job market, Loyola decided to respond by arming its students with skills and tips for using professional contacts to gain access to jobs that are never posted. I was really impressed with the quality of the speakers and the material that the school was able to pull together.

Looking back, Orientation Part I was really about surviving law school, and I was grateful for that information in August when my biggest concern was about my academic performance. But Orientation Part II reminded me that my ultimate goal is having a career as an attorney. Now does this mean I can skip my Torts readings this weekend? No, but at least it does give me a little more motivation in getting it done.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Appeal of the Evening Division

By Yungmoon, 2E

In my last post, I revealed I don't even have time to listen to Taylor Swift in the car, opting for audio files of cases due for class instead. So you may be asking yourself why the evening program appeals to students.

- For starters, the entire evening program is half the size of one day section. The classes are intimate, and since you'll all go to Sonia's to watch Monday Night Football between class, you will quickly figure out who also roots for your beloved Patriots.

- The school is extraordinarily accommodating for 1Es. Student group events are held at 5:00. Professors hold late office hours. Sonia's Cafe stays open through the break between classes so you can grab a late dinner (and even bring food to class if you're running late).

- Evening Student Bar Association (ESBA) focuses solely on the needs of the evening students. Whether it's organizing turf club, getting dinner catered, or providing awesome Juris Nocturnis tshirts, this group is committed to improving the quality of life for every one of our evening students.

- The evening program can be done in 3.5 years (instead of 3), and you have the opportunity to participate in externships in your latter years while attending school at night.

- I go to bed every night feeling like I've truly earned it. I'm at a point where I physically and mentally have nothing left to give, and it is extremely fulfilling. The old Irish saying goes, "This is a day in our lives, and it will not come again." Being an evening student ensures I haven't left anything on the table when the day is gone.

- Besides the obvious monetary benefit, working gives you perspective. Having something different to do during the day prevents you from being entirely consumed by law school. Think of law school as a goldfish that will grow as big as the bowl it lives in. Limiting school to a portion, and not the entirety of your life, is a healthy safety valve.

At least for me, the evening program is a great fit and I love the opportunities Loyola provides to evening students.