Wednesday, September 9, 2009

It all Begins!

I eagerly anticipated commencing my first year of law school all summer. I couldn't wait! I knew it would be a wonderful new beginning; but, I wasn't quite sure what to expect. I had known the orientation schedule for some time and was unsure why it was scheduled to span for several days. I am so thankful it did!

The most profound and memorable experience for me during orientation was the session during which guest speakers expressed to the incoming class their views of the significance of that first step we had all taken toward becoming members of one of the most noble and honorable professions. For many, myself included, I believe it was an emotional experience and one of the proudest moments we had ever experienced. We had taken a step toward becoming "a whole". While we are each different in many ways, we are very much the same. And we shared a room with future attorneys, judges, Congressmen and women, Senators. These were the people with whom we would associate and share experiences, not only for the next three years, but for the duration of our careers. I feel fortunate and honored to have shared these moments with each and every one of my classmates.

During orientation, we were given a case to review and had a mock contracts class. We were shown how to roughly brief a case and did so in preparation. During our class, we were encouraged to participate through class discussion. Although, during this class, we weren't subjected to the Socratic method and the potential embarassment which may have resulted, many of us expected to be introduced to that aspect of law school soon enough.

We were fortunate enough to meet most of our professors during orientation, as well. It was a great opportunity to see them as they were...people. I had read and been warned that the law school professors would not fall short of intimidating and had been encouraged not to fear any of them. But, during this session, they presented themselves in a professional, but down-to-earth, manner. It became clear that they were only there to ensure our success. That they each embraced us as a whole. They each recognized our accomplishments thus far and took real ownership in ensuring our future successes. They said, and have said many times since, that they are our greatest resources. It's true.

There were many other helpful sessions during orientation that helped to prepare us for our first year. Additionally, we were given plenty of opportunities to ask questions in an open forum. Altogether, it was a great experience and helped us make the transition smoothly.