Wednesday, April 29, 2020

I'm Shy, Networking is Scary, But It's Okay

     As you can guess from the title, I’m shy, networking is scary, but it’s okay. You might be thinking: “Oh wow I’m shy too, but I thought networking was the key to surviving in law school. How will I ever survive?” To be honest, networking is actually really important in meeting and getting to know people who are in the field of your interest or are doing something in their industry that you think is cool. But it is something you can learn to ease into or get used to.
     As someone who worked in the Career Development Office over the summer and has seen what they do firsthand, the staff does a really good job at making sure students are aware of potential job opportunities and works really hard in setting up networking opportunities to get students in the right mindset, help ease them into the notion of networking, and prepare them for getting that next big job or internship.

     Some of the resources and events they have include:
  • The Small Firm Reception, which takes place in the Burns Student Lounge at school: I participated in this during my 1L, and it was interesting because it was basically “speed-dating” but for jobs and employers. It’s a great opportunity to not only meet potential employers and briefly discuss your qualifications for their position but also meet some of your peers who you don’t have classes with but have similar interests.
  • Networking Workshops, which also takes place at school: The CDO staff gives you tips and tricks for going to your next networking event. During one of the workshops, I learned the importance of having an “elevator pitch” (it is basically a sixty second introduction to yourself, your interests, your experiences, and what makes you interesting) prepared and ready to go. They also advise you to have an answer for the infamous question that all law students (probably from the beginning of time) are inevitably asked in some variation: “So why law school?”
  • Brown Bag Lunches: CDO invites attorneys, usually alumni, to come to campus and spend the hour lunch break sharing lunch and talking to students who are interested in the field. Some areas of the law that have been covered during prior brown bag lunches include: family law, personal injury, workers’ compensation, and immigration. 
  • Career Advisors: Every student gets assigned a career advisor who works with them throughout their law school career. The career advisor looks at your resume and provides feedback, discusses possible approaches to get the job you want, and also conducts mock interviews. The latter is especially helpful in practicing what to say during interviews and even networking events. 
So it’s okay to be shy and not know what to do about networking because you’ve got a team of peers and professionals who are here to help you get on your way.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Networking Opportunities

My favorite event that I’ve attended on campus thus far is the Consumer Law Symposium. I attended it in 2019 and thought it was really helpful! Students were given the opportunity to hear from practicing attorneys and also witness a mock voir dire. I hadn’t really come across any opportunities like that on campus before that, so I was very grateful.

It was also an invaluable experience because I got to meet and speak with top attorneys in the field. Any event that puts students in contact with top practicing attorneys is really important for a student for multiple reasons. For me, however, the most important reason I wanted to learn from other attorneys was to solidify what area of the law that I’d like to practice in. I definitely accomplished this that day and it kickstarted my path toward the career that I want.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

5 Things I Love About LLS

I first applied to Loyola because the thought of diversity in law school attracted me. Now that I am a third-year evening student, I can say that I love a lot of things about Loyola.

  1. I love the people I have met along the way.

    I can honestly say that I have found not only colleagues, but best friends and for that I will always be grateful.

  2. I love the opportunities Loyola has given me (networking opportunities, resources, and most importantly our counselors).

    From OCI to informational packets, Loyola has prepared me for interviews and networking events. My counselor, Graham Sher, is always an email away willing to answer my questions or update my resume for the 100th time.

  3. I love how much I have learned and how my professors always wanted to make sure that I understood.

    I love how I know about different subjects and how my professors always gave the extra mile to make sure I understood.

  4. I love the city view (park on the 5th floor for a breathtaking experience).

  5. I love the person I have become because of my experience at Loyola, and most importantly, how I’ll be able to contribute to society because of it.

Monday, April 20, 2020

Plans for My Fourth Year in the JD Evening Program

There are tons of benefits to experiential learning that I would still like to take advantage of in my fourth year! Experiential learning allows students to get hands-on experience to develop essential skills for their future careers. Even if a student is in a clinic that is not in the field that they would like to ultimately work in as an attorney, so many of the skills are transferable – like learning how to speak with clients, preparing paperwork, working with deadlines, etc., but it’s all dependent on the clinic that the student is involved in.

I have actually selected a concentration, the Civil Litigation Concentration. I look forward to taking the Civil Litigation year-long preparation course in my fourth year. Coupled with my time working in law firms, I think that the concentration will give me many of the skills that I need to succeed in my future career.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

1L Elective: Why Privacy Torts Is the Best Class I’ve Taken So Far

Hello again, Jury of Peers! Spring is in full swing here at LLS and things are a little more hectic than in fall. As a 1L, choosing your elective is the only real taste of freedom you get in regards to your schedule. This year we had a choice of six different electives that we could request to be put into. There is also a seventh elective for students that the law school wants to help get better at exams: privacy torts. Most students wouldn’t declare they were in privacy torts because that would mean admitting to the world that they didn’t get A+’s their first semester at law school. But I think the best way to help others is to be brave myself.

Here is why privacy torts has been my favorite class so far. One, because I genuinely wanted to take privacy torts and think the subject is interesting. I’m interested in entertainment law and privacy torts look at a lot of celebrity privacy cases. Two, because as a first-generation law student, this class gives me access to information I couldn’t get from other sources. After we started breaking down exam structure, I realized that I didn’t misunderstand the material last semester, I just didn’t go deep enough in my analysis of those issues. Three, we “get real” about law school. We talk about how law school affects you mentally and emotionally. We do a lot of practice analysis so we get about 400% more feedback in this class than any other class I’ve taken so far. Four, my professor (shout-out Professor Wells!) is really great. She encourages a lot of discussion and encourages us to approach these cases from all angles. She has really reminded me about why the law is so powerful, because it affects people’s everyday lives.

I genuinely think that struggle is part of succeeding. Law school is hard for everyone. Yes, everyone. Struggling doesn’t make you lesser than your classmates who got an A; it means that you’re still learning and are doing something outside of your comfort-zone. Do I wish that I got all A’s last semester? Of course. Am I grateful for the opportunity to learn more about where I can improve so that in the long-run I understand the whole system of law school better? You bet. Hopefully this can be your reminder that struggling is not an obstacle to success but rather it is the catalyst for amazing things to come!

See you in the next one,

Monday, April 13, 2020

Experiencing Law School

You may have heard me or someone else in my situation say “Law school goes by way too fast.” For a Loyola day student, it’s done in three years. For an evening student, it’s four years and you’re out those doors. Unless you already absolutely know what you’re going to do in life after law school (i.e. the kind of career you want, what area of the law you want to practice, solo practitioner or mid-size firm), it feels like there are so many different areas of the law, so many different things to try, and so many choices to make in so little time. Luckily, at Loyola, there are opportunities for you to have experiences and learn about different areas of the law while at the same time fulfilling graduation requirements (i.e. pro bono or experiential learning). Loyola offers several clinics and practicum that give you the opportunity to work with real-life clients and cases in an on-campus setting and also promotes application and participation in externships and field placements at various courts, companies, firms, start-ups, etc.

Now that I’m a 3L, here are some of the things I’ve been lucky enough to experience while at Loyola:

Loyola’s Project for the Innocence

I was fortunate enough to be selected and work as a clinical student for Loyola’s Project for the Innocence during my 2L. The clinic focuses on wrongful convictions and works toward building cases for those actually serving time in California’s prisons. Participation in the clinic is two-fold. There is a class-room component, in which we learn about concepts, procedures, and issues in the criminal justice system, and there is a clinic-component, in which we are each given two clients – one who is prospective and one is already an existing client. With regards to the existing client, we basically pick up where the last clinical student left off; we write letters, make visits to the prison, sort through evidence, go through court transcripts, meet with witnesses, etc. With regards to the prospective client, our job is basically to go through and evaluate all the information we have in the file and help our assigned supervisor determine if we are going to move forward with taking on the client and working on their case. By no means is it a piece of cake, but it’s definitely worth it being able to help someone and be their voice. During my time at the clinic, we actually secured the release of a client, and he actually came back to class and gave a talk about his experience, what he’s learned, and what he plans to do moving forward.

In addition to being able to give back and help make a difference for someone, the clinic also helped me fulfill my pro bono and experiential learning requirements that I need to graduate from Loyola.

Entertainment and New Media Concentration, Transactional Tract

Loyola offers different concentrations, including but not limited to immigration, tax, civil litigation, and criminal justice, that help you develop your interests in a particular area of the law and give you the fundamentals needed to be successful post-law school. I declared my concentration in transactional entertainment law at the end of my 2L after taking a couple entertainment related courses, experiencing other areas of the law, and finally coming to the conclusion that a career in entertainment law is what I want to pursue.

The entertainment concentration has two tracts, transactional and litigation, and both require students to take entertainment law, trademark law, copyright law, all three of which are considered the core entertainment courses. Both tracts also require the entertainment practicum, which I’ll discuss next. I chose transactional entertainment so other required courses I have to take include introduction to negotiations, business planning, business associations, and legal research for the transactional attorney, all four of which are important skills for an attorney in that field.

Furthermore, the concentration requires students to take a minimum of two electives in any entertainment and new media related course. I’m taking the “Art and the Law” seminar and the Advanced Torts this semester to meet the elective requirements. I chose to take the former because I don’t know too much about art law and thought it would be interesting to take a break from the traditional law school bar course. Additionally, it helps me satisfy my upper division writing requirement for graduation. I chose to take the former because it is a recommended bar course (always helpful because of our end goal of taking the bar) and because I really enjoy learning about privacy torts (i.e. misappropriation of identity and intrusion upon seclusion).

Entertainment Practicum

The Entertainment Practicum is actually a required course for the Entertainment Concentration, but it is not a traditional law school class. The course is structured in a way where students learn important entertainment law concepts (i.e. negotiating a writing deal or being an ethical professional) by reviewing documents and hear about what it’s like to be an entertainment attorney today from speakers. Speakers are usually alumni or friends of Loyola are working in almost every area of entertainment law, including but not limited to the film and television studios, talent agencies, record labels, and law firms. It is an insightful experience that allows students to ask questions about potential careers they are interested in or pursuing and get candid answers from those who presently have those positions.

Field Placement/Externship

Field placements and externships are opportunities to work in law firm, start-up, or court settings. Typically, students don’t get monetary compensation for these positions; rather, they get experiential credit for graduation and units. Field placements and externships also have a classroom component in which students submit timesheets and task journals from work, write reflections, and give presentations.

I chose to do an externship because it was required both by my concentration and my employer. I have been an extern at NuMedia Studios since the start of my 3L. They are located in Hollywood, CA on the Jim Henson Company Lot (think Muppets) and deal with a variety of different entertainment transactional and litigation issues. I always thought I would go into transactional law (think writing contracts and agreements) but my time at NuMedia has given me glimpse into the litigation side (think writing briefs and motions and actually going to court for them). I think having this kind of experience is especially important because it gives you an insight into a career that you’re potentially going to pursue after law school.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

My Clinical Experience at Loyola

As a transfer student, one of the biggest things that attracted me to Loyola was the number of experiential learning opportunities. From clinics to externships and more, Loyola offers something for everyone. Clinics and externships give students the chance to get hands on experience in various kinds of law.

While I was originally looking into a few different clinics, I decided on the Conciliation and Mediation Clinic (CMAC) at Loyola’s Center for Conflict Resolution (LCCR). In CMAC, students are trained to do actual community conciliations and mediations. Students work alongside knowledgeable staff and professors help people resolve their disputes outside of court. Although the LCCR mostly works with underserved groups, students still get experience with all kinds of cases from divorce to landlord-tenant disputes to debt collection. Depending on the client’s income, the Center’s mediation services are often free of charge.

People are often surprised to hear that most legal disputes don’t make it to trial. Many cases settle outside of court and one of the most prevalent alternative dispute resolution methods is mediation. With this in mind, I knew that my experience in CMAC would undoubtedly come in handy in my practice as an attorney. Even as a law clerk sitting in on mediations, I now have more of an understanding of the process and am able to get more from observing mediations.

As a 3L, I can confidently say that doing a clinic was one of the best choices I made during law school. It gave me the best firsthand experience that cannot be taught in the classroom. With so many clinics and externships to choose from, students are sure to find an opportunity that will directly enhance their legal education.

Monday, April 6, 2020

What I Love About Loyola

Hello again, Jury of Peers! As I write this post, Valentine’s Day is 4 days away, and I’ll be honest I think this holiday is little, well, overrated. But that being said, I have a lot of things I love about Loyola and law school in general.

  1. We’re all in this together, which means it doesn’t matter where you came from.

    Law school is hard for everyone, no matter what undergraduate institution you came from, how many lawyers you have in your family, how well you did on the LSAT, or how many years you’ve been out of school. We all go through this process together and everyone has something they can learn from others. As a 1L, I’ve come to learn that treating law school as your section against the world is a much better way to approach law school than your section against itself.

  2. Loyola is a no frills, get you a job, here’s-the-truth-of-it education.

    While that might seem harsh to some, one thing I truly love about Loyola is that your time is spent learning what you will need to succeed out there in the job market. Professors spend a lot less time musing about the theory of how things should work and let you in on the reality of how things do work in the field. Loyola gets you ready to take the Bar as well as be an asset to any place you work for after graduation.

  3. The alumni really care about the future of the school.

    This is the smallest thing imaginable but, during finals alumni will donate snacks and coffee for the students to get free-of-charge. You go into the library and there they are, shining like a beacon in the dark time known as finals. It’s truly a tiny gesture, but it definitely says something about a school when alumni are so active in giving back and taking care of the next generation.

  4. Law school instills a sense of pride in accomplishment.

    Listen, law school is a mountain to climb, but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate yourself when you reach a milestone marker. Even if I’m not in the top 5% of the class, I can still be proud that I did a whole semester. I can still be proud I finished a reading that was really complicated and took forever. I can still be proud that I’ve yet to be late for a class. Law school has taught me to appreciate the big moments and the small ones. It goes by fast, so it’s nice to stop and celebrate every once in a while.
That’s all for this post, I’ll see you in the next one!


Kelsey’s Club: Little Treat Yo’Selfs*
  • Play two episodes of Netflix in a row, no guilt
  • Get that trenta at Starbucks
  • Buy that pair of shoes you’ve been wanting
  • Plan a day trip for over spring break

*please watch “Parks and Rec” if you haven’t seen it

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Love in Law School

What is love in law school? Love is…
  • … the faces of the friends you see on campus and immediately strike up a conversation with.
  • … the person who sits next to you in California Civil Procedure, who offers to share her notes with you because you missed the last section.
  • … that friend that accompanies you to networking events because those kinds of things can be scary and intimidating on your own.
  • … the professor who stays after office hours to make sure any student who still has questions gets the answers they need for that graded writing assignment.
  • … the professor who goes above and beyond for you to patch a connection with someone in the area of law you’re interested in.
  • … the passion faculty and staff for the work they do.
  • … the smiling faces of the people who work in Sonia’s CafĂ© when you need to check out your lunch, dinner, snack, or 7th cup of coffee.
  • … the excitement the helpful librarian has when you call, email, or go to when you have that pressing research question for that memo you waited one week too late to start working on.
  • … the career counselor who sits with you and continues to email you comments and notes on your resume so you’re in tip top shape for job applications.
  • … the career development staff member who hypes you up and encourages you to still apply for that job you really want but don’t think you’re 100% qualified for.
  • … the security guard who waves you off as you drive home from campus.
  • … the smile that one person you always see around campus but don’t know their name gives you in passing.
  • … the student who goes on the school Facebook page to get the lost keys or Hydroflask bottle they found in Merrifield Hall or Donovan back to its rightful owner.
  • … the passion and tenacity the staff of all the clinics have in fighting for justice for their clients.
  • … the patience the Financial Aid and Admissions Office staff has to answer all the questions and their genuine interest in each new face that comes up to the window with a question about coming to Loyola.
  • … the loved one back at home or wherever who is rooting for you as you go on your law school journey.
  • … the lifelong friend you have seen in a while who understands that you are in law school pursuing your dreams but still supports you 100%.
  • … the free coffee DSBA supplies us with during finals week to make sure we’re well-caffeinated and functioning.
  • … the care packages full of self-care products and snacks that the registrar’s office gives us during reading period.
  • … the beautiful sunset over DTLA you stood in awe watching on top of the school parking lot.
  • … your perseverance and determination to thrive in law school.
  • … your hopes, dreams, and passions for life and your career.
  • … you as you take the skills and experience you gained while in law school out into the world to help people and make a difference in the community.
  • … everywhere in our Loyola community.