Monday, December 7, 2009

Random Law School Update 4

Last Location: Pre First Law School Memo
Arrival Date: August 31, 2009
Departure Date: November 20, 2009

Current location: Pre First Law School Finals
Arrival Date: November 20, 2009
Departure Date: December 8, 2009

Next location: Post First Law School Finals (Winter Break)
Arrival Date: December 17, 2009
Departure Date: January 11, 2010

My first real law school exam is tomorrow. I'm not counting the writing exam and memo as "real" since they were very different in nature than what will be my next four tests. I am doing really well so far. Law school has turned out to be everything I had hoped for, and my life here is one of clarity and light, not of doom and despair. I say "so far" since I have very little idea what to expect in the next ten days of exam-taking and very little idea how I will do relative to my peers. But I am not worried. My peers are brilliant. Even if I were to fall below the median, I will still feel privileged just to have been in their company throughout the exam process.

I will write more on the stakes of the game later. There is a lot to say about the process that is interesting. One of the most important things to know is that law school exams account for pretty much 100% of the grade for a class. There are no graded assignments and only a few classes weigh participation at all, even though participation via the socratic method is a major theme in first year law classes. This stresses a lot of people out, but I think it is great. It takes a lot of the pressure off throughout the semester which makes it easier to actually learn the material in time for the exam. All of the exam grades come out together; I imagine sometime in January. Thus, there is no way for me to actually know how I am doing in law school from a quantitative perspective, which leaves me more room to feel like I'm doing well from a qualitative perspective.

In other events, I was in Tucson last week for Thanksgiving, stuffing myself with vegan goodness and Mexican F (my decidedly favorite burrito joint in the world). And Saturday was Compassion Over Killing's annual Holiday party, which was decadently catered and well-attended by the best and brightest animal advocates in the DC metro area (and, probably, the world). If you are feeling generous this time of year, please send them your love (aka donation) at: