Friday, July 9, 2021

My Summer Plans

It hasn’t been easy making long-term plans this past year.

Initially, this semester should have been my last. My 2019 self planned on studying in LA for a year (where I would work on that sweet, sweet tan that is so hard to come by in the Netherlands), before graduating and entering the next phase of my life. However, since I chose the Flex LLM (an option due to COVID19), I will finish the LLM in two years rather than one. Therefore, graduation—along with a lot of my plans, the most pressing of which was to finally get a cat and a driver’s license—has been pushed to a later date.

This, in turns, means that I will have a summer vacation before the start of the new academic year. I am committed to spending at least two weeks screen-free to give my eyes a break from all the hours spent staring at a computer screen (I’ve probably had more headaches this year than I have in my entire life. I’m exaggerating, but only slightly (although I do tend to procrastinate whenever I have access to the Internet, so some of it is on me)).

I’ll be spending the break in the Netherlands, but I’m not too sure what I’ll be doing yet. I will most likely try to find a summer internship or a part-time job since there’s (according to my calculations) 3+ months to fill before classes begin again. But in all honesty, right now I’m more focused on final exams and trying to keep the stress eating under control than I am on any future plans.

I might moan a bit (or a lot) about being stressed right now, but I’ve had a great year at Loyola. It’s been so fun getting to know my fellow LLMs, many of whom are already lawyers in their home countries, and having basically the same conversation every time consisting of how we can’t wait to go to LA and meet each other in person. I’ve loved the in-class discussions and learning just how engaging and helpful Loyola’s professors are. Needless to say, I look forward to returning in Fall 2021!

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

The Bar Exam

I am finished with my last law school classes and finished with last papers. The only requirement left before graduation is to complete two final exams – Criminal Procedure and Law of Sales. I don’t really get excited or emotional for things like graduations but I will admit, attending my very last law school class was a bit surreal. Everyone always says that the three years of law school fly by in a flash. It’s absolutely true and in some ways, I feel like I just started. It is also strange because I’m hardly done with my classwork. After finals, I transition immediately into bar prep – learning new areas of law and relearning things I’ve forgotten.

I had already started bar prep back in December. I am reading through a few books and sample problems on marital property, going back over old contract and property outlines, and doing some multiple-choice questions. I have already purchased my bar prep course. I decided to go with Kaplan over Themis and Barbri because I felt Kaplan offered the most comprehensive package for developing my essay-writing skills. The plan is to work on bar prep as though it is my 9-6 job. I have already carved out some time to attend a wedding in May but I have made a point not to fill my schedule with new plans.

I’m still rather focused on my finals so I can’t say I’ve given a lot of thought to my specific study schedule. I know that I need to learn at least the basics of marital property and wills and trusts in the next three months before the July Bar Exam. Those two subjects are not tested on the Multistate Bar Exam (aka the MBE, which is the multiple-choice section of the exam) but they could be tested in the essay section. I also need to extensively review criminal law and basic property law which I have not studied since the fall semester of my 1L year. I am more confident about contracts because the Law of Sales class, which I’m taking this semester, is grounded largely in concepts covered in 1L contracts classes. I’m also more confident about civil procedure because I’ve gotten a lot of experience over the last three years working with statutory deadlines, pleading requirements and motions. I am also very confident in my knowledge of business associations because of my experiences in the corporate concentration. Nevertheless, I am treating bar prep as an opportunity to start my law school education from scratch. I’m sure there are things in every subject that I have forgotten. I cannot afford to skip reviewing any part of any subject.

The great thing about bar prep is that there aren’t really any cases to read. The course books give the relevant rules without “hiding the ball.” Although this means I won’t get the richness of the case history, I can go through the basics of each area of law pretty efficiently. Wish me luck and I will see you on the other side!

Friday, July 2, 2021

My 2L Summer

What Am I Doing 2L Summer?

Well Jury of Peers, we’ve come to our last post for the year. I honestly can’t believe this means I only have one year of law school left. It’s really been crazy, to say the least. I’m so glad I got to share my story with you and hope you’ve gotten something out of it too.

As of writing this post I am still in the process of looking for summer jobs. Though things are looking up for fall, the summer job market is still quite affected by the ripple effect the pandemic started. I wish I had better news, for your and my sake, but that is the reality for us law students, or at least many I’ve talked to.

Luckily, Loyola provided some good opportunities to apply to law firms in the LA area. This year, I participated in Spring OCI (on-campus interviews) and the Law Firm Reception put on by the school. OCI in the spring is mostly comprised of small and medium sized firms whereas Law Firm Reception is mostly small and boutique law firms. Though working in Big Law one day would be exciting, at this point in my legal career, I’m more interested in small to medium firms.

However, despite not getting a job / internship offer (yet, fingers crossed), I am taking some classes over summer so that if I get an offer to be part of a clinic next year, I will have taken some of the pressure off of myself to get some of my last classes done. I really want to make the most of my last year, especially if we are on campus (again, fingers crossed) so that takes some planning ahead on my part.

Overall, I’m excited for summer because no matter what I end up doing, it will be a nice change of pace from the non-stop rigor of classes during the school year. I wish I had more to say, but I’m not great at goodbyes. I wish you the best of luck in your legal career and should we ever cross paths, feel free to say hi!

Goodbye for now,