Knowing that I will be an 1L somewhere come August 2008 is an enormous relief. I knew of the 36 applications, at least one school would take me. What I did not expect was a “we like you” from a school that I really wouldn’t mind attending (Loyola Univ, Chicago).
I had set my bar very low so that I would not be terribly disappointed; I did not expect an acceptance from any Tier 1 or even higher end Tier 2 school. I know the numbers are not the only thing that matters, whether it is the schools evaluating me or me deciding which school would be better. But I cannot help but sneak a peak at the rankings, the median LSAT, etc. Such sad reality…
Upon receiving the good news from Loyola, I went ahead and applied to four more top tiered schools with an added boost of self-esteem and confidence. I’m just waiting to see if Loyola was just a fluke or if people really believed me when I told them I’m gonna make a great lawyer.
People are freakin’ me out. I am well aware that the first year is going to be a killer, but what is up with the summer reading list that has more volumes than my current library all put together?
How far should I go? Do I go all out and hardcore like this guy suggests? Or should I heed the advice of U. Conn. summer reading list:
“Two of the most important things you can do this summer, aside from dealing with real-world obligations such as making money, child care and the like, do not involve reading at all. They include: (1) breathing in; and (2) breathing out! Seriously, you will be much better prepared for the rigors of law school if you have had a balanced, enjoyable and relaxing summer than if you have not.”
I know I should prepare to a certain degree; I have very little knowledge of the legal system. The environmental law class I’m taking now should be helpful, but it can only go so far.
So far, I’ve seen a lot of different places that recommend:
1) Acing Your First Year of Law School (ISBN 0837709121)
2) Getting To Maybe: How to Excel on Law School Exams (ISBN 0890897603)
3) A History of American Law (ISBN 0684869888)
4) The Common Law by Oliver Wendell Holmes (ISBN 0486267466)
5) One L (ISBN 0374226474 for hardback, 0446673781 for paperback) – this one is purely for reading enjoyment; not all schools are like Harvard Law
6) Gilbert Law Summaries (from Amazon)
7) Nutshell Series (from Amazon)
* Especially of note: How to Study Law and Take Law Exams (ISBN 0314065962)
8) Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace, 9th Edition (ISBN 0321479351)
9) The Nature Of The Judicial Process by Benjamin N. Cardozo (ISBN 0548761914)
10) Law 101: Everything You Need to Know about the American Legal System (ISBN 0195179579)
11) Reading Like A Lawyer: Time-Saving Strategies For Reading Law Like An Expert (ISBN 1594600325)
12) Introduction to the Law And Legal System of the United States (ISBN 0314158987)
And when I get bored of reading, I can watch these movies:
1) The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence
2) Double Indemnity
3) The Sweet Hereafter
4) A Civil Action
5) Twelve Angry Men
6) The Thin Blue Line
7) To Kill a Mockingbird
8) Blade Runner
And if that is not enough, some classic reading on law in literature.
Whew… what I have I signed up for…?
It’s such a draining experience to wait for those application files to become “complete.” It’s really not my fault that they are not complete – it’s the admissions offices that are slow. But I am the one suffering for 4 to 5 weeks after having submitted everything.
About half of the files (out of 36) are complete now. I must continue to wait since it may take anywhere from a month to three months before they make a decision. Sigh…
Anger! Frustration! Fists of fury!
So… I have decided to start blogging about my journey to law school. It is mainly for my own reflection/record-keeping sake, but if someone finds this interesting or helpful along the way…? even better.
I’m going to start blogging about the things that are happening to me now – after having submitted 36 application and endlessly waiting for responses. If I get the time, energy, and the motivation, perhaps I will back-track and write about where it all begin.
I’m kinda excited for this… I’m a geek.