Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Debunk a Law School Myth

Hello again, Jury of Peers! This week, let’s open Pandora’s Box and talk about…Law School Myths.

Sometimes it feels easier to never open the box because it’s easier to not know than it is to know. But hopefully all you prospective lawyers out there aren’t afraid to put in some elbow grease with me as we dissect a couple common myths!

#1: Law School transforms even the most social of butterflies into the most hermit of crabs.

This is actually a Yes-and-No myth. Yes, law school takes a HUGE amount of your time and you do, to some extent, have to plan your life around putting in those solo study hours. But to say you never get to go out with your friends isn’t really true. To avoid feeling stressed about homework while also avoiding burnout, I usually try to limit myself to one social thing a week either on Friday or Saturday night. The best way to ensure you get that social time is to plan ahead and front load your work or, only make plans after your normal study hours.

#2: Law school professors don’t care about you.

Maybe at other schools this is true, but at Loyola I feel so grateful to have professors who genuinely want to not only get to know us as students but get to know us as people. They want you to succeed and become wonderful lawyers. They definitely don’t coddle you in any way, but they sincerely do want to help you do well.

Hopefully this helped allay some of your fears. I truly think you’ll find that the more you investigate these myths, the more you’ll realize that they are just that: myths. Don’t be afraid of opening the box for fear of what you might find. Plus, you can say you’re a Law-School-Myth-Buster!

See you in the next one,


Kelsey’s Club: Myths About Loyola That Are Fully True (In My Opinion)
  • Sonia’s CafĂ© is a gift from above
  • PILF Auction Night is super fun
  • Everyone here is really friendly and inclusive

Monday, November 18, 2019

Law School is a Full-Time Job

Before I started law school and all throughout my 1L, I was constantly told that law school is like a full-time job. After almost three years in law school, I would like to confirm that this in fact is true! When we say that law school is like a full-time job, we mean that it is a lot of hard work, takes a lot of your time, and requires focus, discipline, and your best efforts at all times. While you might think that this is a bad thing, it’s actually not. Law school, like any other job, teaches you a lot about the profession, others, and yourself. With regards to the latter, you learn a lot about your skills and capabilities, your strengths and weaknesses, and your ability to resolve issues and ultimately thrive in whatever you aspire to do.

If I were to talk to my 1L self now, I would tell her that law school isn’t all that bad and that she should treat law school as a job. I would advise her to treat it as a 9-5 meaning go to school in the mornings and get all the readings for the next day done right away instead of taking breaks and putting it off until the last minute. I think one thing I’ve definitely learned while in law school is that time is money. It’s extremely valuable and that if I have a couple free minutes or hours now to get work done, then I will have a couple free minutes or hours later on for myself to do something fun, relax, or sleep.

Finally, I would tell her that it’s okay if things get hard or feel difficult because just like any other job, there’s room for improvement and growth and eventually things get better and easier as you go. It’s possible to thrive and achieve your goals, it just takes time, hard work, and trust in yourself that you can do it.

Until next time friends!

Friday, November 15, 2019

Summer in the City

For those of you who followed my blog post last year, I left you on a bit of cliffhanger as far as my job hunt. I was actually able to land a great position as a law clerk at Goodkin Law in Century City. Goodkin is a boutique firm that specializes in real estate litigation – exactly what I hope to practice after law school. I found out about the position through Loyola’s spring job fair. I met the firm’s founder, Daniel Goodkin, and senior associate, Michael Shakouri, and even though they were actually looking for 2L applicants, they encouraged me to apply after we chatted for a few minutes. I applied and was thrilled when I found out that I got the job. What’s more, I found out that I’d be working alongside my classmate and fellow Wine & Spirits officer Rebekah Hoelscher!

Over the summer I got to work on everything from discovery and pleadings, to temporary restraining orders (TROs) and motions for summary judgment (MSJs). The wins are satisfying but one of the most important things I learned is the reality that, as great as you think your arguments are, you’re just not going to win every time. All you can do is make the best case for your client and when things don’t go your way, you’ve got to learn to roll with the punches, react with purpose, and move on to the next battle.

In addition to my work at Goodkin, I started Bootcamp with Loyola’s Byrne Trial Advocacy Team. Bootcamp started in mid-July and right out of the gate, the workload was surprisingly tough. Last minute reading or writing assignments were commonplace. The Bootcamp is only about a month long but they pack a huge amount of information in including evidence primers, trial basics like moving exhibits into evidence, how to talk to juries and TONS of reading and writing. The whole thing culminates with Bootcamp trials at the end of the summer. I and my Byrne teammate, Rima Sahakyan, prepared for and actually competed in two trials in a week. It was an intense and rewarding experience.

Now Rima and I are both headed to Texas for the Lone Star Classic trial ad competition and I couldn’t be happier! My teammates, Rima, Anders Iversen, and Ilia Borisov are all incredibly talented advocates and we have amazing coaches in John Henry and Melissa Lyons (pictured below with me after a 4-hour Monday night practice). We’re all eager to go represent Loyola and show off everything that we’ve learned and practiced this summer!

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Volunteering: A Fun Summer Alternative

As a law student, it is very common to spend the summer either taking classes to ease your fall semester’s course load or externing to satisfy your experiential requirements. However, I decided that this summer I would do neither, instead I wanted to relax (Yes, you read well, I said relax). Sometimes relaxing is essential to recover from finals and law school life in general. Most importantly, taking care of your mental health is crucial to succeed in law school (friendly reminder that Loyola offers support resources).

After enjoying my vacations without any remorse, I decided that I wanted to volunteer near my community. I thought finding a place to volunteer would be challenging and it was so far from the truth. All it took was a five-minute internet search to stumble upon an organization that needed volunteers for their monthly immigration fair. I was surprised with all the exposure I had, with the supervision of a certified attorney I filed paperwork for citizenship, conducted interviews, renewed green cards and DACA applications, and translated. I am not going to lie, I was kind of hesitant because this was my first time dealing with immigration law; however, Loyola has given me the tools to adapt in any particular environment. I never thought that I would spend my summer relaxing while performing legal related duties. Therefore, if you do not want to compromise your whole summer, volunteering is always a great option!

Monday, November 11, 2019

My 2019 Summer

This summer I worked at a mid-sized law firm doing employment defense work. After working in house at Forever 21 during my 1L summer, I was able to narrow down the practice areas that I wanted to explore. Employment was one such practice area that I developed interest in during my time at Forever 21. I appreciated the human-interest aspect of employment law and the uniqueness of each case. In particular I enjoyed working on behalf of the employer as I got to see what goes on behind the scenes after an employee files his/her complaint.

At work this summer I was able to get hands on experience into the world of litigation. From propounding discovery to writing motions and reports, I was entrusted with preparing documents that were crucial to the litigation process. While drafting such documents isn’t necessarily covered in law school, I quickly realized that the knowledge I amassed at Loyola was crucial in helping me succeed at these practical tasks.

Although I worked full time over the summer, I was fortunate enough to also be able to travel and take some time to relax before school started. In July I went to Mexico for a family wedding and later to Chicago with friends. However, vacation could only last so long and school began shortly after I returned. As I returned to school well-rested and relaxed, I reflected back on my summer and could not help but realize how much I learned. I am currently working as a law clerk at the same law firm I was at this summer and plan on continuing for the rest of the year and beyond.

Friday, November 8, 2019

My 2019 Summer

This summer was a total whirlwind for me! A few days after I finished up my finals, I got married and went on a trip through a few cities in the pacific northwest. I decided to participate in the write-on competition for law review in the few days I had when I returned and then a couple of days after that, I started a new job! It sounds like a lot of stress in a short period of time, but honestly the whole thing was pretty fun.

I was lucky enough to work full time this summer and did not need to take any classes. Evening students sometimes have to take classes in the summer to make up for shortcomings in their schedules during the year, but that was not the case for me this time around. Instead, I was blessed with the opportunity to work in a personal injury firm alongside truly amazing attorneys. I decided to stay at this firm in the fall because I’ve just been learning so much. I get to draft correspondence and pleadings, communicate directly with clients, and so much more. I think so much of the law school experience is actually going out and learning in the real world, so I’m really grateful for this opportunity.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

My 2019 Summer

This summer I had the opportunity to extern in Federal Bankruptcy Court in Downtown Los Angeles. As a judicial extern, I watched proceedings and performed legal research and writing. I also had the opportunity to talk to many judges about their experiences as attorneys. My favorite part of working in chambers was the chance to put into practice some of the theories I had learned during my first year. For instance, during our first year we learned about the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and during the summer I had the opportunity to see how these rules were integrated into complaints. Furthermore, working in bankruptcy was a great opportunity to learn an area of the law that I had previously not been exposed to. I learned a lot from looking at issues that I was not familiar with and researching primary and secondary sources for new concepts and precedent. Furthermore, having a supportive judge and amazing clerks definitely made the process more enjoyable.

In addition to all the interesting work in court, this summer I tried out a lot of new food places in Downtown Los Angeles. The Federal building was very close to the Arts District, and Chinatown so there were plenty of options for delicious food daily. In addition to the restaurants in the area, Downtown has farmers markets that offer fresh produce during the day. I enjoyed walking to the farmers market to buy delicious strawberries from the farmers market during my lunch break. Oh, also the view from chambers was pretty sweet!

Monday, November 4, 2019

Summer Days, Driftin' Away

Summer blockbusters always trail characters who go on an adventure and come back with a renewed sense of self or a new feeling of belonging. My summer followed a similar path, except my summer lasted a full year because I took a gap-year after graduation.

During my senior year, I had planned to go right from undergrad to law school but decided I needed time off to replenish things in my life that had gotten low. The first portion of my summer break was focused on relaxation. I took time to travel, pick my artistic passions back up, and reconnect with my high school friends who were also back home after undergrad.

The next portion contained a lot of stress. To be honest, I had a crisis. I seriously pondered what was right for my future and really had to look at what was important to me. I wondered if law school was right for me (which I learned was common). But I decided that law school was where I should go and did what everyone probably still has nightmares about: took the LSAT and applied to schools.

I then interned as a social media and marketing intern for an acting studio in Santa Ana where I worked remotely (and in pj’s!) from home in Las Vegas.

In my last weeks of summer, I took on the “glamorous” task of packing to move. It was scary to move again to a new city and take on the daunting task of law school. But what I didn’t have the first time around when I went to undergrad was a stronger sense of purpose and a renewed sense of self.

Friday, November 1, 2019

2L Summer

I spent this past 2L summer decompressing from the busyness of 2L, relaxing, and gaining more experiences to diversify my skillset and make me a more well-rounded person. Over the summer, I worked as a student administrative assistant at the Career Development Office and a law clerk for a local law office.

As a student administrative assistant for the Career Development Office, my duties consisted of communicating with students and other callers, inputting and publishing opportunities on the school’s online job posting website, and assisting the staff with events and other projects. While indirectly law related, this opportunity allowed me to become aware of all the opportunities that are available in the legal profession and understand the importance of being creative when trying to figure out the next big step in one’s life.

As a law clerk for a local law office that specialized in immigration, international business, and corporate law, my duties included conducting research and writing corresponding memos. I also had the opportunity to draft employment contracts, an independent consulting agreement, and visa support letters. This job experience allowed me to learn about multiple areas of the law and work on my legal research skills. I also learned the importance of being flexible, adjusting work styles to fit the expectations and structure of different attorneys, and accepting constructive criticism.

Prior to starting work for the summer, I took about three weeks off to relax, spend time with loved ones, and catch up on sleep. I’m happy I made this decision to take some time off because I was able to start work with a clearer and more relaxed mind. Some fun things I did over the summer include fangirling during the opening weekend of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, cheering on my sister at her college graduation, spending time with my dog, going to Dodgers games, trying new food, attending concerts and sporting events, and making Disneyland trips with various visiting family members and friends.

This summer allowed me to focus on myself by relaxing, getting refocused on my goals, and developing my personal and professional interests. Now that school’s back, I’m ready to take on everything this last year at Loyola has to offer!

Until next time friends!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019


Hi! My name is Breanna. I’m currently a third-year evening student for those that don’t know me. I live in the valley with my husband, Michael and our two dogs. I’m on campus a few days each week and also work part-time at a personal injury law firm in Century City. This is a little different from my first two years of law school because I previously worked as a tutor for students with learning disabilities and had a much more flexible schedule. Needless to say, the third year of law school as an evening student has brought its own set of challenges.

In the time since I started law school, I’ve been slowly checking things off my bucket list. This summer I got my first job in a law firm since starting law school, got married, and went on a few fun trips. I’m planning to continue that trend this year as I’m on law review, continuing to work, and taking on leadership opportunities at school. Law school can be hard because a good portion of your time ends up being spent on school or doing something else to work toward your future. With that being said, it’s also my goal to work more on being present and mindful. Not sure how well that’s going to go, but I’m giving it a solid try!

Monday, October 28, 2019


Hello Jury of Peers! My name is Kelsey and I’m SO excited to be your 1L blogger this year!

So, since you’ll be hearing from me all year, here’s a little background about who I am. I grew up in Las Vegas with my parents and my younger sister, but I graduated from UC Irvine with my bachelors in Business Administration and Drama in 2018. Zot! Zot! Zot!

I love singing, songwriting, painting, and poetry. I also really love to travel. You might have guessed by my majors that I’m a huge theatre geek, so it only makes sense that my favorite place in the world to visit is New York City. (My list of great Broadway shows is at the end of my post!)

*Yes, that is Lin-Manuel Miranda’s signature on my phonecase*

By far my favorite part of undergrad was being on an improv team that I ended up running my junior and senior year. I taught, performed, and helped run/produce a huge comedy festival, the Coup de Comedy, every spring that drew in both UCI students and the outside community.

In my gap year between undergrad and law school, I took a lot of time to relax and reinvigorate myself. I did an internship as the Social Media and Marketing coordinator for a small acting studio in the OC which was really fun. I got to work from home in my pj’s, so it doesn’t get better than that. I also came back to UCI to teach improv workshops during the Coup de Comedy 2019.

Right now, I’m interested in pursuing Entertainment law, but my interests are always changing since all of my classes are peaking my interests. Even though I’m a busy law student if you ever see me on campus, come over and say hi! Just like pretty much everyone at Loyola, I’m always ready to engage and make meaningful connections with others!
See you in the next one,


Kelsey’s Club: Broadway Edition
  • Anything Goes (2011 Revival)
  • Bandstand
  • Come From Away
  • Company
  • Hadestown
  • Hamilton
  • Kinky Boots
  • Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812
  • Newsies

Friday, October 25, 2019



1. Hola! My name is Nicole Christine Burgos Romero (long, huh?) and I am a third- year evening student.

 2. I was born and raised in Puerto Rico (and yes, I am also tired of hearing “Despacito”). 

 In fact, I moved here three years ago. Even though, I love California and its scenery. I must say that our beaches in Puerto Rico cannot be compared (Sorry!).

3. Before ever thinking to become a lawyer, I wanted to be an “Egyptologist.” 

Yes, that’s a thing! I grew out of it soon since Egypt is a world away from Puerto Rico. However, I am still obsessed with Egypt, think it has the best history ever, and secretly wish to become an Egyptologist.

4. I am obsessed with horror films and crime podcasts.

I think there is nothing more relaxing after reading about evidence than to watch a horror movie or listening to a good crime podcast. If you like crime podcasts, I TOTALLY recommend “Crime Junkie.”

5. I am a mom of a three-year-old.

I had my son and two weeks after I was finishing my last semester of college. So far, I see this as one of my biggest accomplishments. Also, having a kid and being in law school is super manageable; do not let anyone discourage you, if it is something you want to do.

6. Law School is not what I thought it would be.

Law school is nothing like “How to Get Away with Murder” because we have to you know… READ — sorry Ms. Keating! All jokes aside, law school is WAY better in real life, people are actually nice, cold calling is not that terrifying, and some assignments are fun.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019


And just like that I’m in my last year of law school! It’s hard to believe that just last year I was starting my first year at Loyola as a transfer student. I remember being nervous and wondering how I would start over at a new school. One year later I can confidently say that “starting over” at Loyola was the best decision I made. I’ve become active in the school’s student organizations, joined an awesome clinic, am working at a great firm, and have met some amazing people.

It’s hard to tell people you’re going to law school without getting some kind of unsolicited advice in return. However, I found that the actual advice varied depending on where I was in my legal education at the time of the conversation. During my first year, the most common response was “I hear the first year is tough.” As a 2L, it was much more motivational as people reassured me that “you’re almost there!” Now as a third-year law student, the question has become: “Are you excited to graduate?”

While graduation has always been the endgame, it is bittersweet to think about closing such a big chapter in my life. Law school is hard, there is no way around it. But law school has also shaped me into a more aware, knowledgeable, compassionate, and hardworking person. As someone who has always been in school, this is likely the last time in my life where learning will be my full time job. That in and of itself is hard to wrap my head around.

Don’t get me wrong though, I am excited to graduate. Soon enough I will be putting my law school knowledge to use. This summer I got a glimpse into how I would actually be applying this knowledge working in employment law. Learning about a legal concept and applying it to a real case are two very different things. However, I’m glad to report that Loyola prepared me extremely well for this task. From writing motions to preparing reports, I used the skills I gathered at Loyola to help my firm make a real difference for our clients. Ultimately, I hope to be doing this work on a higher level as an attorney.

With that said, here is some unsolicited advice from someone who has been through it all: learn as much as you can and try to enjoy the process. It’s easier said than done, but soon enough you’ll be a 3L and getting ready to enter the real world.

Monday, October 21, 2019


There is a saying that 1L year they scare you to death, 2L year they work you to death, and 3L year they bore you to death. I can’t speak to 3L year and 1L year was scary but I made a ton of great friends who helped me through it. What they say about 2L year though is spot on!

Hello lovely readers. For those who don’t know me from my blogging escapades last year, my name is Alex Verdegem and I’m now a 2L at Loyola Law School. Since the last time I wrote, A LOT has changed. I earned a summer position at Goodkin APC in Century City working on real estate litigation, I wrote onto Loyola’s International & Comparative Law Review, I made Loyola’s nationally ranked Byrne Trial Advocacy Team, and I made it to my second year of law school! Needless to say, it’s been a busy summer and, since the start of school, the workload has only increased. That’s law school though and I really wouldn’t have it any other way.

Unlike 1L year, my class schedule is mine to control. Right now, I’m literally in class, reading, or writing 12+ hours per day, 7 days per week. Weekends are filled with trial ad practice trials, critiques and constant rewrites of our case. I’m taking two required “Bar” courses as well as prepping for the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination, the attorney ethics test, in November. Finally, I’m the Internal Chair of the Real Estate Law Society in change of 1L representatives and I’m the Treasurer for the Loyola Wine & Spirits Legal Society. On any given day, it’s not hard to find more work that needs to get done J

Why am I doing all of this? Because I enjoy all of it and it was my goal to be involved as heck during my 2L year! I was so impressed with all that Loyola had to offer during my 1L year that I wanted to dig in and take advantage all the opportunities that surround me. The coaches on Byrne are tough but I know they can help me if I put in the work. The law review is full the most interesting and intelligent people I’ve met here. My classes and my professors were all my choice. And of course, the Real Estate Law Society and Wine and Spirits just bring me joy. For me, 2L year has been a chance to take control and decide where I want to go. And I decided to jump in head first.

Friday, October 18, 2019


Welcome to the Jury of Peers everyone!!! My name is Nicole, and I am a 3L here at Loyola Law School. Since my 1L, I have been a blogger here on the Jury of Peers and have been documenting my time at Loyola. So if you’ve been here before, welcome back, nice to see you! And if you’re new, WELCOME!!! (Also, please feel free to check out my previous posts from 1L and 2L to be assured that law school does get better… it really does!)

So a little bit about me: I graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2015 with degrees in English and Global Studies. After undergrad, I wanted to give myself some time and an opportunity to explore my interest in a legal career and be sure that it was what I really wanted. So from 2015 until 2017, I worked as a legal assistant at a boutique law firm in the Inland Empire that specialized in workers’ compensation, personal injury, and trusts and estate. This experience not only taught me discipline, professionalism, and the importance of efficiency but also solidified my interests in pursuing a legal career and going to law school. Now, I’m here at Loyola in my third and final year trying to learn as much as possible and gain as many valuable experiences that will make me a well-rounded attorney and individual.

During my 1L, it was a bit of a challenge getting back into the school routine especially after two years working and not having to worry about the turning in assignments and staying on track with reading. But fortunately with a little perseverance and some good friends, I was able to pull through and survive that first year.

During my 1L summer and through my first semester as a 2L, I worked as a research assistant for the Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic. I had gone into law school thinking I really wanted to do immigration law so this opportunity helped me explore the field while at the same time learn more about a subject matter that is so relevant and debated in our society. Moreover, this opportunity allowed me to strengthen my communication skills and improve my organization and planning techniques, both of which are transferable to other areas of the law.

During my 2L, I was a clinical student for the Project for the Innocent. I wrote an entry about this experience last year, and I will definitely discuss it more detail when we get to clinics and externships. But to put it in a nutshell, this experience opened my eyes to a serious and emotional issue: wrongful convictions.

This past 2L summer, I worked two jobs: at the career development office here at school and at a law firm that dealt with immigration, international, and business transactional law. Again, I’ll discuss these work experiences in further detail in a later post, but in short, both experiences, though different, allowed me to develop skills and learn new things about myself.

And now, we’re in the present! As I mentioned, I’m a 3L, which means I’m almost to the end of my time in law school! After working in workers’ compensation, immigration, criminal law, and international business, I have decided to focus on transactional entertainment law. It’s been a journey, but I feel like I’m finally on a path that excites me and appeals to two longstanding interests that I’ve had: entertainment and contracts.

So far, this has been all work and no play, and I’m sure you must be wondering: “Is there no fun to be had while in law school? Is there no time for anything aside from books and work?” While law school is like a full-time job, it is still important to keep yourself in mind and set aside personal time away from law school. So what do I do? I hit the gym, head over to Disneyland for mid-week trips to grab a churro, play with my dog, try new food, watch Dodgers games, spend time with my loved ones, watch Friends, sleep (it may sound funny, but this is so important!), etc., etc.

I hope now you know a little about me! I can’t wait to share this year’s adventures with you! I’m a student ambassador for Loyola, so if you see me on campus during your visit or take a tour with me, don’t be a stranger! Let’s talk – about law school, your questions, food recommendations, the best rides at theme parks, baseball, your hopes and dreams, everything and anything!

Stay tuned! 3L is going to be an adventure!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019


Hello fellow and future Loyolans!

Welcome to another school year! After spending a great summer in Bankruptcy Court, I was excited to come back to school. As difficult as 1L was, it was also extremely stimulating and rewarding. Even though during the summer I had the opportunity to catch up with my friends, I still missed the day-to-day with them. It is true what people say; your law school friends will end up becoming your lifelong friends.

2L has been a completely different experience than 1L. After the heavy academics of 1L, I decided to take advantage of Loyola’s experiential opportunities. I decided to do both the Civil Rights Litigation Practicum and the Juvenile Innocence and Fair Sentencing Clinic. By far the hardest part of this year has been the level of independence that comes with working with real issues and real clients. This semester I’ve had to truly exercise time management as the projects for practicums and clinics are ongoing. Surprisingly working independently with real issues and real clients is also the most satisfying part of the work. Representing clients has been an amazing experience that integrates the theory of law with my desire to help communities of color. As a certified law student, I have the opportunity to become a better advocate while providing post-conviction services to people sentenced as youth.

So, I am five weeks in and I am still thrilled to be back and excited for what 2L will bring!

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Summer Is Here

Loyola holds tons of events – speaking, networking, and otherwise, that are geared toward helping students succeed. I’ve attended a few, but I wasn’t necessarily planning to do an externship during the summer.  I toyed with the idea of taking summer classes, but decided I didn’t want to because I don’t need the units. To be honest, I had no idea how I wanted to spend my summer and was having trouble finding people who could give me some solid words of advice about what I should do. However, I stumbled upon a fantastic externship at a great firm after attending a Consumer Law Society event that I’m very excited for.

I’m going to be a summer law clerk at a personal injury law firm in Century City, which will be my first legal job in several years and my first experience being given more autonomy at a law firm. I’m very excited to learn more about this area of the law and also about the different stages of a case. Loyola has already given me a head start on some portions of that, though, through my Legal Drafting class. The skills that I learned in that class will certainly come in handy since I, not only drafted legal documents and correspondence, but was taught real-world advice about what you need to know if you’re going to work in a law firm. In a way, that’s exactly what Loyola is good for. I can say for certain that Loyola’s emphasis on preparing us to actually practice the law has made a huge difference for me.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Loyola's Pro Bono Requirement

I decided to knock out my pro bono requirement during the summer after my 1E year. Typically, evening students don’t really hold internships before their 2nd summer, but I wanted to do a little more while I was taking Constitutional Law and continuing to tutor students part-time.

However, I went above and beyond the hours that I needed to hit. I decided to spend three days each week at Neighborhood Legal Services working in their clean slate initiatives. Primarily, I interviewed clients, completed expungement paperwork, drafted petitions, and met with them in person at NLS’s monthly clinic. Throughout all of this, I got to get my feet wet in criminal law and public interest work, while also having direct contact with clients. It was a very informative and rewarding experience, but also very difficult work. I have a lot of respect for the attorneys that I worked with for that very reason. I had several instances where I interviewed very emotional clients, who had been dragged through the mud over a conviction on their record which they either regretted or had a very heart wrenching back story for. These experiences taught me a lot about working directly with clients and also working in the public interest realm. I also learned a lot about dealing with the criminal courts and what it’s like to be a pro per litigant. I would highly recommend this experience to anyone looking to fulfill their requirement because it was more than just logging volunteer hours. NLS gave me the ability to spend time with people, to learn their stories, and to tell them the best way that I could help in the hopes that I might be able to change their lives in a significant way. I think that’s the real power that attorneys have in action.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Sunrise, Sunset – The End of the Year and the Start of the Summer

This is my last post of the year and I feel like the time has absolutely flown by. Before I start, I just wanted to thank you for checking out my blog! I hope I have given you a bit of insight into life at Loyola with some advice and fun anecdotes. I have already experienced so much in my classes, extracurriculars, Barristers’ Ball (check out the photo below!), and in my job hunt for the summer. Still though, there is a lot left to do before classes wrap up. I haven’t totally nailed down all of my summer plans but I am interviewing everywhere and there are still on-campus activities that could impact my summer – particular Loyola’s nationally ranked Byrne Trial Team.

On the job front, I’m in the midst of second and third round interviews with several firms. I won’t lie, I am a little jealous of the people who earned judicial externships. Most of my friends who applied for externship spots and have known since January what they would be doing for the summer. It would be nice not to worry about interviews but I’m still happy with my decision to try the firm route. In addition, there are additional externship opportunities available in the future after I’ve taken classes like evidence.

It is funny how my job interests have developed since the start of the year. In the beginning, I thought that I would only ever want to do transactional work. Recently though, I had to present oral arguments as part of my legal writing class. I was so much fun, I HAD to add several litigation firms to my job search. You never really know what you’re going to be good at or how your interests are going to develop so stay open possibilities.

The other exciting summer prospect that needs nailing down is the opportunity to be on the Byrne Trial Team, which is ranked 9th in the country! Tryouts are actually tomorrow and I need to practice my closing arguments and cross examination skills. If I were to make the team, I would have to attend a summer boot camp in the evenings in addition to my summer position. Wish me luck! Whatever happens, I’m excited for the summer and for the coming year.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Summer Is Here

I can’t believe this is my last blog post during my 1L year! I cannot express how quickly time has flown. When I first started law school, I thought this year would drag on, and don’t get me wrong, at times it seemed never ending, but looking back I have no idea where the time has gone. I am so thankful to have spent my first year of law school at Loyola. The friends and relationships I have made so far are more than I could have ever hoped for.

            It has been my honor to blog for Loyola during my first year and it’s been a pleasure sharing my experience so far. My plan for the summer is to work. I have been applying at employment firms and for entertainment positions. I have had wonderful informational interviews with very impressive attorneys that have given me helpful career advice and articulated the different steps I can to take to get where I want to be.  I will also be diving deep into research this summer as I have a plan to implement a new organization on Loyola’s campus in the coming years.

            I am excited to see what this summer will bring. While working and researching I will also be taking a summer school class. I plan to take Evidence so that I can lighten my course load during the fall semester and intern throughout the year. I also like the idea of not getting out of the “school mode” so taking a summer school course is perfect for me.

            Loyola has been very helpful in my career search. We are constantly getting emails and updates about open positions and there are numerous events educating us on how to format our resumes and curate our cover letters. Simplicity (a career builder and event website run by Loyola) is also a wonderful tool in searching for open positions. While final exams are still ahead of me, I often find myself reflecting on this year. A year ago today I was still in St. Louis about to finish up undergrad. It seems like a lifetime ago, and I have grown so much since then. This year has had it its ups and downs, but I would gladly choose Loyola all over again.

Summer is Here

Hello, Jury of Peers! I can’t believe that is the last time I’m saying hi to all of you. Yes, the semester is ending and graduation is so close! Also, my birthday is one day before graduation so I can say that I am twice as excited for May.
I feel that the time flew by, but I also feel that I am ready for a new chapter in my life. I am going to be a clerk for the DA’s Office in Los Angeles and I am so excited for that because I want to practice criminal law in the future so this is going to be a great learning opportunity for me!
Also I will start studying for the bar exam, but I am going to sit for the bar in February so I have more time to study and focus on the exam. I have to admit that I am a little bit scared of the bar exam but I will do my best and hopefully next year I have good news.
It was a pleasure for me to be a LLM student at Loyola Law School this past year. It was so far the best experience of my life and I am so grateful for everything that I learned and that I spent so much time on campus. I recommend to everyone out there to live this experience if you can, and I am sure you will not regret it!
Thank you Loyola Law School for being my home for this past year and I know you will always be my home! I am sure that all the opportunities and achievements that I will have from now on will be thanks to you and because of that I will be forever grateful.
For all the future LLM students, know that you are not alone: Loyola is your family! Also, the LLM alumni are your family too!
Now let’s see what the future has prepared for me.
Bye, Jury of Peers!

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Summer is Here

It seems as though from the moment the school year begins, law students around the country begin thinking about their summer plans. While some students find their summer positions during the first few weeks of school through the OCI process, many use the school year to explore their options. As a transfer student at Loyola, I was fortunate enough to be able to still participate in the second round of OCI—an opportunity that not many schools provide to their transfer students. Although I ultimately decided to wait on making any summer plans, the OCI experience gave me a head start at developing my interview skills, finessing my resume, and getting familiar with the law school job market.

As the year progressed, I began putting in more effort into my summer job search. One resource I relied on heavily was Loyola’s Symplicity job page. As positions became available, Loyola’s Career Development Office would share these opportunities with students via this online platform. The page was updated almost daily and allowed students to apply to the positions directly from the postings themselves. Ultimately, it was through Symplicity that I secured my summer position.

This summer I will be working as a Summer Associate at mid-sized law firm in Downtown Los Angeles. I will be pursuing my interest in Employment law by working for the firm’s Employment practice group. I had initially applied for the position on Symplicity in late Fall. I remember thinking that the position seemed too good to be true but thought that I had nothing to lose by applying. After not hearing anything back for a few months, it seemed fair to think that I should probably start exploring other options. Right before Spring Break, however, I got a call for an interview and the rest is history!

I could not be more excited to start my position this summer. I can confidently say that Loyola’s Career Development Office and my counselor Katrina have been instrumental in helping me secure my summer position. Many of my friends at other schools are surprised at how committed Loyola is to placing its students in unique and prestigious externships, jobs, and practical learning opportunities.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

And Just Like That, Another Year is Over

Welcome back to the Jury of Peers, readers! I hope this blog post finds you happy and well!

Can you believe it?! This is the last entry for the academic year! The spring semester is coming to an end, and summer is just around the corner, which means final exams, last minute studying, and summer jobs! It’s hard to believe that it’s already that time of year again, but 2L really has gone by so so SO FAST!

I am currently in the process of attending my final lectures for the semester and getting prepared for the exams season, which to be honest is and will always be a nerve-racking and stressful time. It’s truly crunch time trying to work on and finish course outlines, finish office hours for my clinic, the Project for the Innocent, and make sure I’m on top of all my readings and assignments for my courses that are still in session.

In addition, I am also in the process of figuring out what I want to do this summer. I am currently working on the transactional tract for the entertainment law concentration and one of its requirements is experiential. So I am currently trying to decide if I want to do an externship/field placement for credit during the summer or if I want to do another form of employment or internship. I am also trying to decide if I want to take classes over the summer so I can clear up some space in my schedule during my last two semesters and take other classes that I am either interested in or think would be fun. That being said it’s a lot to think about, and to be honest, I’ve been putting the thought of it on the backburner because I’ve really been trying to focus on my classes and getting the grades I need to put me in the best position heading into 3L. Am I stressed? You bet I am. Am I worried? A little. But I’m not letting myself get bogged down by those thoughts when there’s still a lot of work to get done this semester! There’s plenty of time to worry about jobs between now and the summer, and I’m hopeful that everything will work out!

On another note, I’m hoping to find some time to relax and spend time with family and friends this summer. It’s my final summer of law school, and I think that calls for some adventures!

So until the next time readers… enjoy your summer and see you in the new year!

Friday, May 24, 2019

School's Out For Summer!

Well, not yet. But we are OH SO CLOSE. It is hard to believe that this is going to be one of my last summer breaks ever (it is still a break even when you are working full-time, right?). Next year, when I graduate, my summer will be completely devoted to the bar exam, so I do not count that one.

This summer, I will be working for the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office as a certified law clerk. I also worked there last summer, but as a 1L, I wasn’t able to be certified, so this summer will be even better because when you are certified, you get to speak on the record. I will be making motions, conducting preliminary hearings and arraignments, and assigned to a specific felony unit. And not only will I get to do all of this, I will actually be getting paid for it (which is rare when working for a government agency).

I am from Sacramento County and ultimately want to end up back there one day, so I was a little worried about going to school in Los Angeles at first. But I soon learned when I started interviewing up north as a 1L that Loyola is respected all over California, especially in prosecuting offices, for turning out trial-ready attorneys. I was specifically asked about the Hobbs program (which I am in) and my interviewers knew what the Byrne Trial Team was from reputation. I know for a fact that just having “Loyola Law School” on my resume made a difference in my interviews. It not only made me stand out in the sea of Northern California schools, but its reputation absolutely proceeded itself.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Loyola's Pro Bono Requirement

Loyola has a pro bono requirement, that each student must fulfill before graduating. Being part of a law school that puts such an emphasis on helping others, makes me extremely proud and I look forward to exploring the various opportunities to assist in the community.

As a 1L, I have not completed all my pro bono hours yet and frankly, I am not even close. I have signed up for a few events here and there, but the bulk of my pro bono hours will be fulfilled in my 2L and 3L years. I recently signed up to be a mock juror for the “Young Lawyers Program”, that helps high school students learn about the legal system and practice their skills. This is a program I had planned to be a part of this semester, but their meeting times conflicted with my class schedule. I definitely foresee myself making room for this program next year, as working with high school kids, is very near and dear to my heart. Before law school, I had worked with and trained middle school and high school aged students in basketball and mentored them in other areas as well. I would love to transition those skills over to teaching students about the legal system and peaking their interest in law. I cannot think of a better way to fulfill my requirement. ☺

There are a plethora of other events/clubs/activities that satisfy the pro bono requirement awaiting me. From clinics to volunteering on the weekends, Loyola makes sure we have various opportunities at our avail. Clinics are an amazing way to fulfill your pro bono requirement. They provide hands on experience for students in a variety of fields.

My interests in law school still lie heavily in the entertainment and sports world. I would love to find a way to incorporate sports law into a pro bono activity/event. I definitely plan to do some digging over the summer to find a way to make it happen. For now, I will continue to be on the look out for all the wonderful ways Loyola allows us to help our community.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Forty Hours

As you may or may not know, Loyola was the very first law school in California to institute a mandatory pro bono work requirement to graduate. During your three (or four) years, you must complete 40 hours of approved pro bono legal work. These hours generally cannot be related to your summer internships or clerkships. It may sound like a lot of work but there really are A TON of opportunities to earn pro bono hours from organized clinics, to election volunteering, to random opportunities emailed to you daily.

Full disclosure: I went to catholic schools most of my life where community service was just part of the fabric of attendance. I had service requirements for elementary school and a one-hundred-hour service requirement at Damien High School. The first time I didn’t have a service requirement was when I went to undergrad. Needless to say, the pro bono requirement did not faze me at all and was actually a feature that drew me to Loyola!

Just thinking about the requirement forces you to consider what’s important to you – what do you really feel passionately about? For me, that is housing. I came of age during the Great Recession when close friends of mine were seriously threatened by the prospect of losing their homes. I worked my very first job in the legal field during that time and it happened to be in bankruptcy. Every single day, I met and spoke with clients whose mortgages were vastly greater than the value of every last possession they owned, including their homes. It was an incredibly rewarding experience. It seems counter-intuitive but, through bankruptcy, many clients were actually able to reestablish their financial footing and put their lives back on track. My first pro bono position was naturally at a firm that specializes in tenant-land law, as you well know if you have read my prior blog posts.

You can start working toward your pro bono requirement after the first semester of your 1L year. Just like summer employment (also discussed in prior posts), Loyola delays when you can start accruing hours until after finals because your first semester is all about your classes and how to succeed academically. Once the last day of finals is over though, you are free to start earning your pro bono hours. I won’t lie, I actually thought that we couldn’t start earning hours until second semester started. When I applied to work over the winter break, my goal was really just to gain experience and put my newly acquired knowledge into action in an area that excited me. It was only after I started that I realized I could also earn pro bono credits. All-in-all, I’d say my mistake worked out well.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Loyola's Pro Bono Requirement

One of the qualities that distinguishes Loyola from other law schools is the school’s unwavering commitment to public service. After all, the school was built on the Jesuit values of serving the community and applying the knowledge gathered in the classroom in the form of public service, all while maintaining the highest standards of integrity and professionalism.

When I first heard about Loyola’s 40-hour pro bono requirement, I must admit I was a little bit taken aback. 40 hours seems like a lot and with the busy schedule of a law student, every minute of your time seems accounted for. However, after only a few weeks of school I realized how doable and important those 40 hours really were. Today I can confidently say that fulfilling pro bono hours is probably one of the easiest and most fun parts of law school.

As I’ve mentioned in prior blog posts, the experiential and extracurricular options at Loyola are endless. Whether you’re interest in tax law, employment law, or criminal law, there is an organization for you. Because Loyola emphasizes the importance of public service, many of these groups provide students with the opportunity to do the required pro bono hours in a particular practice area that they may hope to pursue in the future.

For me, I knew that I wanted to join one of Loyola’s clinics. One clinic that piqued my interest was the Loyola Center for Conflict Resolution’s Mediation and Conciliation Assistance Clinic. In joining the clinic, I wanted to get hands on experience with the community and develop new skills that would help me in my career as an attorney. Not only was I able to accomplish these goals, but I also fulfilled all my pro bono hours in just one semester of working at the clinic. While I initially didn’t know if I would continue with the clinic after Spring semester, I have no doubt that I will go on to participate in the clinic throughout my time at Loyola despite already having completed my pro bono hours.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Loyola's Pro-Bono Requirement

One of the factors that originally drew me to Loyola was their commitment to social justice, and their public interest focus. As part of our graduation requirements all Loyola students must complete at least forty pro-bono hours. While as 1Ls our primary focus is our classes, I’ve still had the opportunity to become involved in some of the pro-bono opportunities on campus. As first-year students we have the opportunity to complete up to ten hours of pro-bono work during our Spring semester. This semester I will complete some of my pro-bono hours by volunteering as a mentor for Loyola’s Young Lawyers Program.

Loyola’s Young Lawyers Program brings students from local high schools to campus to teach them the main aspects of litigation. Students learn how to write opening and closing statements, how to challenge evidence, and how to direct and cross-examine witnesses. At the end of the semester students compete with other groups as either plaintiffs or defendants. In our role of mentors, we assist high school students in preparing for their roles and we encourage them to continue their education. Participating in Young Lawyers this semester has been a great opportunity that I hope to continue next year. Having the opportunity to mentor first generation students is incredibly empowering and helping put together the trial gives me the opportunity to apply what I learn in the classroom in a practical way.

While I hope to continue being a part of Young Lawyers in the upcoming years, I am also excited to pursue other opportunities to help our community. For instance, next Fall I hope to apply for either the Street Law Teaching Practicum or the Civil Rights Law Practicum. I also hope to have the opportunity to work for the Project for the Innocent, which works to exonerate those who have been wrongfully convicted. I feel Loyola has so many opportunities to become involved with the community and to do meaningful pro-bono work that the hard part is deciding how to fit all my interests into my time in law school.

Friday, May 17, 2019

I'm Pro-Pro Bono!

So you’re currently a prospective student for Loyola, and you’ve just learned that Loyola was one of the first law schools in the country to both encourage pro bono student work and actually require it for graduation.  You must be thinking: “Wow, I have to do the school thing, and do 40 hours of pro bono work too? What’s pro bono work? How will I find it?  When will I have time?!”  But fret not reader, you have three years, including the summer to finish those hours.  Plus, there are plenty of opportunities available to Loyola students.  Let’s get started:

·       There are off-campus opportunities at the various non-profit organizations in the area, such as the ACLU or the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA), that become known to students through listings in the “Need 2 Know News” mailer or emails from the Career Development Office or Public Interest Department.
·       The various clubs and organizations on campus have pro bono opportunities as well.  For example, when I worked as a research assistant for one of the professors at the Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic (LIJC), we ran a project that sent law students of varied experiences and interests to go to the Detained Immigration Court in Downtown Los Angeles to sit in on the hearings and take down the information of those respondents who were unrepresented or eligible for pro bono legal representation.  These students were able to select their hours to volunteer and had the option to do it for pro bono hours too.
·       Additionally, there are opportunities through the different on-campus Social Justice Clinics, which include the Project for the Innocent, Immigrant Justice Clinic and Juvenile Justice Clinic.  Students can apply for these clinics during the spring semester for participation in the following year for either a single semester or full-year. 

Currently, I am in the middle of completing my pro bono requirement through my enrollment and participation in Loyola’s Project for the Innocent.  As mentioned in my previous experiential learning blog post, it’s a one-year requirement that involves evaluating and working on cases of those currently serving life sentences in California state prisons for the purpose of building a case of wrongful conviction.  These are real people with real cases, and the experience to date, because of this real-life component, has been heart-wrenching, moving, awe-inspiring, and humbling.
            As a clinic student we have a couple requirements, which include:

·       Attending a two-hour seminar once a week in which we learn about subjects, such as  the different issues present in wrongful conviction cases, complete assignments pertinent to the class discussion that week, and write memos and essays pertaining to our assigned cases.
·       Holding a minimum of four in-clinic office hours a week during the semester.
·       Completing a minimum total of 150 hours of work on our cases each semester.

It may sound like a lot of work, on top of academics, but to date, it’s been a manageable and unique experience that’s allowed me to learn about the justice system and prevalent legal issues, fulfill my pro bono requirement for graduation, and gain invaluable legal experience.  I have found that participating in pro-bono work has been such a unique experience that’s allowed me to explore a different area of the law and become a more well-rounded student and future lawyer. So I’m definitely pro-pro bono work while in law school!

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Pro Bono is Fun!

As part of my graduation requirement here at Loyola, I have to complete 40 pro bono hours before I graduate. That goes for every single student at Loyola: we all have to complete 40 hours of pro bono work. It is part of the school’s commitment to public interest law.

I didn’t start working on my pro bono hours until this year as a 2L and now I have over half of the required hours done. I was able to satisfy many of my pro bono hours by being a bailiff and helping set-up the National Civil Trial Competition, or NCTC. NCTC is a national trial advocacy competition that is hosted by Loyola every year. The Byrne Trial Team plays a large part in hosting the competition, which is why I was so heavily involved this year.

As a bailiff, I kept time for the trial advocacy competition and was the liaison for the competition judges. I was able to watch several impressive trial advocacy teams compete, which was incredibly entertaining, while at the same time satisfying my pro bono requirement. It was nice to have the opportunity to not only satisfy my requirement, but also have fun doing it and be really interested in the subject matter!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Networking and Career Development Opportunities

Law school is a sea of unknowns. Almost everything you encounter is unfamiliar. For me in particular, the place, the people, the city, the structure, the professors, the content, was all new. Loyola definitely realizes how all these foreign experiences can weigh on a first-year law student and they do an excellent job at taking some of that pressure off of us.

Among the plethora of challenges, learning how to network is one of the most pressing difficulties of law school. Loyola hosts a variety of networking panels, guest speakers and other career development events to help kick start our career search and to give us much needed experience at networking with all kinds of attorneys.

I have been lucky enough to attend a variety of these events. I am part of the Entertainment and Sports Law Society as well as a 1L representative for the Woman in Entertainment Law Society and Woman’s Law Association. They, along with other Loyola clubs, have put on a host of wonderful events this year, in which attorneys from different fields travel to Loyola’s campus to talk to us about their experiences in their chosen industry and to give us advice about the steps we should be taking to set ourselves up for success. While I have enjoyed all of the guest speakers thus far, the most memorable was when the general counsel for the Lakers, Dan Grigsby, visited Loyola to share information on how he was able to work his way to such a prominent position.

Loyola puts on brown bag lunch events and panels, which involve a variety of attorneys speaking about their experiences and answering any questions we may have. Further, Loyola organizes numerous networking events. I recently had the pleasure of attending the spring law firm reception, where about 20 firms came to campus and we were allotted time to speak and network with representatives from the firms. This event was extremely helpful, and I followed up with many of the employers that I was able to speak with. These panels and events are extremely advantageous in building our network of connections and in facilitating our growth as future lawyers.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Networking and the Summer Job Hunt

Networking and job hunting can absolutely be one of the most intimidating and challenging aspects of a legal education. Networking is one of those soft skills that cannot really be taught and the hunt for work is unending. I don’t claim to be a master of “working the room” or of sniffing out the premium job postings but I do feel much more confident than I did just six months ago. I owe that in large part to all the events and emails from the Career Development Office.

During the Fall semester, Career Development was actually forbidden from talking to us 1Ls! The idea is that we should focus on our studies and not even worry about employment. As soon as the Spring semester started, though, job hunting season starts in full-force. Since January, most days have been occupied by some sort of information session on various areas of law or legal research. So far, I have been to events for in-house counsel, corporate transactional law, a panel on becoming a judge, a focus group with a real estate firm, I just got home from the spring job fair, and I have an upcoming information session on the Navy JAG Corps. I also continue to organize similar events for the Real Estate Law Society and the Wine & Spirits Law Society. All the while, I’m still sending out resumes and follow up on any job opportunities I hear about. Needless to say, if I’m not studying, there is still plenty to do.

In addition to the full load of events, Career Development also sends out TONS of emails about off-campus networking events and job postings. Unfortunately, most of their emails are sent out around same time every day so it can definitely become overwhelming. Around 10:30 AM on any given day, you can count on receiving anywhere between ten to twenty emails from Career Development all at once. It doesn’t sound like a lot, especially if you’ve spent some time in an office job, but when you’re bouncing from a two-hour class in the morning right over to a noon panel, to a pair of afternoon classes, all while receiving other emails from student groups, classes, research event announcements from Lexis and Westlaw, it can certainly add up. My advice is to give each email a quick glance, look for any words or phrases that interest you, flag the ones that you want to come back to later that evening, and move on. Most events and emails honestly won’t be that interesting but you have to check anyway. No one but you will discover those hidden gems that everyone else overlooked! That is precisely how I found my clerkship with the Tenant’s Law Firm over the winter break. You just never know what sorts of interesting opportunities are out there or what connections you might make.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Networking and Career Opportunities

One question that I’m almost always asked on job interviews is: “So why did you decide to transfer to Loyola?” After interviewing a handful of times, I realized that this would be a question that would follow me throughout my time in law school and beyond. While I could easily rattle off a number of reasons why I decided to transfer to Loyola, I took a little more time to think of a strong, honest, and accurate answer to this favorite interview question.

The answer I have so carefully crafted so far highlights Loyola’s huge network and unwavering emphasis on experiential learning. Whether you happen to meet an alumnus at your local coffee shop or get the opportunity to interview for a job with a Loyola alum, it seems as though Loyola graduates dominate California’s legal scene. Further, as I had mentioned in my last post, the student organizations, clinics, and other experiential learning opportunities at Loyola give students the ability to get real world experience that becomes invaluable upon graduation.

With this massive network in place, the Career Development Office and other organizations on campus have been able to connect students to some of the most prominent attorneys in a variety of different fields. The goal is for students to develop meaningful connections within the field and ultimately become the next group of thriving attorneys.

For me, one of my biggest concerns has always been finding a job—whether it be a part-time externship or a full-time summer job. Consequently, I can easily say that the Career Development Office has become an amazing resource and my counselor, in turn, has become my go-to person for anything job related.

Aside from the traditional OCI process and the school’s constantly-updated Symplicity page, the most helpful experience so far has been the Law Firm Reception put on by the Career Development Office. At the Law Firm Reception, I was able to pass out my resume to many potential employers and speak to them regarding any open positions they may have in their offices for the upcoming year. Many of the attorneys there came from highly esteemed law firms and were Loyola alums—yet another testament to Loyola’s wide-reaching network.

Friday, May 10, 2019

Networking and Career Development Opportunities

I feel like every week there is at least one event on campus catered to teaching students about a certain area of the law. Brown bag lunches are always great because students are able to hear straight from practicing attorneys what it is like to be in their line of work. Loyola alumni consistently come to campus to speak with students, which is incredibly helpful for getting a fresh perspective. For me, public interest law week has been the best experience because it brings organizations to campus so that students can meet with them and explore the opportunities that are available. I haven’t taken advantage of the other opportunities on campus just because I haven’t had the time, but I’m really looking forward to doing so in the coming two years. It is a little more challenging to find ways to stay involved and network as an evening student, so I am planning to quit my current job and dive into legal work in the near future. I’m sure that when the time comes, I will put Loyola’s programming to good use!

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Networking and Career Development Opportunities

Since the start of the year one of the biggest buzzwords has been “networking”. Everyone around is doing it, and everyone thinks we ought to do it. While the concept of networking seems daunting – perhaps because it has the word “working” in it- it is not as scary as it sounds. In fact, sometimes putting on a nice suit and nibbling on hors d'oeuvres can be a nice change of pace for a 1L like me. In general, the main requirement to network is the ability to carry on a conversation for a brief period of time. Probably the most difficult part for me is the small talk portion of it, but over time I’ve learned ways to strike up a conversation. Even for those people whose personality is not as outgoing, Loyola provides safe opportunities to learn how to do it. In any given week Loyola holds multiple networking opportunities such as panels with judges, networking dinners and brown bag lunches to help facilitate our immersion into the world of networking.

For instance, this semester the Mexican American Bar Association held a mixer on campus where students had the opportunity to mingle with judges and attorneys. Opportunities like this are really valuable because they provide a comfortable space to network and make great connections with people in the Los Angeles legal community. I appreciated being amongst my classmates while I developed my networking skills because being around familiar faces allowed me to relax and enjoy the experience. I also greatly appreciated the opportunity to network with people with a similar background to mine. Networking with Mexican American lawyers not only allowed me to learn more about the different areas in the law, but I was also motivated to see the support network who is invested in success of students like me.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

The Benefits of Networking and Career Development Events

One of the things I love most about Loyola is their commitment to helping students network, learn more about various areas of legal practice, and connect them to established lawyers in those fields. I have found so many of the events at Loyola extremely helpful to helping me narrow down which area of law I’m interested in practicing, and helping me to make meaningful connections with lawyers who have experience with that particular area of law.

For me, one of the most helpful things that I have done was signing up for an Alumni Mentor. Prior to law school, I didn’t know a single lawyer. One of the first questions I asked my mentor was what I can do now, as a law student, to prepare myself to be a great lawyer, aside from the obvious things like studying and attending class. My mentor stressed the importance of gaining legal experience while in school, and after several conversations offered me a job at his law firm for this Spring.

As a 1L, much of the what we’re learning can often feel isolated from the “real world.” While it’s easy to relate the subject material of classes like torts or criminal law to common life experiences, it’s much more difficult to relate classes like civil procedure to things that we actually experience in everyday life. This has been one of the most useful advantages of working that I have experienced. Not only have I learned very practical skills like sorting and filing pleadings and other documents, I am also gaining real world experience doing legal research and connecting civil procedure rules to actual on-going cases. The rules of civil procedure have become less of a foreign idea and more of a familiar concept.

I've also attended several of the guest speaker lectures during the lunch hour and I've found that it's a great way to be exposed to new and interesting areas of the law and to get perspectives that I might not otherwise be exposed to. Overall, I would strongly recommend taking advantage of as many of the programs as possible. While law school can be difficult, and the job market can be daunting, Loyola is a school that definitely does not take a "sink or swim" approach to things. They help out every step of the way.