Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Decisions, Decisions

In my last blog post I talked about how hard it was to decide to postpone my Evidence final after my grandma passed away. Thankfully I don’t have to face decisions like that every day but there are plenty of other important but thankfully less serious decisions that I’ve had to make – for example, deciding what classes to take. There are so many options it can be overwhelming. You have to research professors, talk to people who have already taken the course, and figure out your schedule. You may, like me, also want to register for one of Loyola’s many Concentration programs, adding one more layer of complexity to the decision-making process.

Before I started school, I worked for an attorney named Barry Freeman at Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell. I knew I wanted to learn about real estate law but he advised to take corporate law classes too because “they would be usefully in wherever you end up practicing.” So far, he’s been 100% right, so I recently committed to pursue one of Loyola’s ten JD Concentrations – Corporate Law.

First, you don’t need to worry about Concentrations right away. You can’t even sign up for one until your 2L year. You also don’t NEED to do a Concentration. Aside from in-depth course work and showing off to potential employers, completing a Concentration just means you get an extra note on your transcript after graduation. I was recently talking to an alum who astutely told me “I didn’t do a Concentration. My Concentration was to pass the bar exam.”

If you do decide to pursue a Concentration, the registration process is very easy (at least for Corporate): just go onto the Loyola website in your 2L year (here is a link to Loyola’s Concentrations), follow the link to whichever Concentration you want, and complete a Registration form…that’s it! Every Concentration has a list of course requirements that you need to take. The Concentration advisors can help you navigate how to structure your coursework and progress.

This semester, my courses for the Corporate Concentration are Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A), Business Strategy for Lawyers, and Cannabis Law. I was originally in Bankruptcy but I decided to drop it. After going to one class and asking others for advice, I decided that I should first take a course called the Law of Sales or Secured Transactions in Real Property. Unfortunately, neither of those courses fit into my schedule this semester with all my other courses.

I’m also taking one required bar course, Constitutional Law, and I once again have the Byrne Trial Advocacy Team and International Law Review. Byrne is still a huge commitment with 16-24 hours of practice per week (not including reading and writing time), so I not only had to think about fitting classes into my schedule, but I also had to think about when I was going to get in all of my class/practice preparation work done. I can go on and on about picking courses but to wrap things up, my three pieces of advice are: 1) make a hypothetical week into a calendar before you choose your classes and plan your study time, 2) take classes with friends who you can study with (they can help you stick to your study plan), and 3) try not to load everything into 1 or 2 days (trust me, 1-2 classes in a day is way easier than 3-4).

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.