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2007 December 15

Posted by schooled in Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

So apparently someone commented on a post I made ages and ages ago, which reminded that this blog does indeed still exist. I’d forgotten all about it. But hey, that’s not such a bad thing. It’s not like I forgot I had $100 or that I left my kid at the grocery store. …oh shit.

Kidding, of course. What self-respecting law student would have $100 lying around when it could be used for things like alcohol or buying a gunner’s outline or maybe some alcohol?

All I’m sayin’ is that this “studying” shtick is gettin’ pretty damn old and New Zealand is sounding attractive. Then again, I do have a thing for cows.

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damn courttv. 2006 December 18

Posted by stephaniesays in Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

i hate court shows. i really do. they’re ridiculous and give the wrong impression of what goes down in court. i’m also convinced they’re fake irrespective of what they tell you in the opening credits.

but i can’t stop watching them when nothing else is on. i have taken to guessing the outcome based on actual law. your res ipsa case sucks! and conversion doesn’t need ill intent! it’s kind of bad…

Another Legal Writing Rant 2006 October 29

Posted by queencru in Uncategorized.
3 comments

Stephanie complained that her LR class had plenty of time to do their last memo, while my last memo was the exact opposite. We got it 2.5 weeks before it was due, so you’d think that it would be no problem. The issue was that the actual instruction for writing said memo came during the week it was due. Some of us tried to work ahead, only to find that what we had written was total crap and needed to be revamped. The lesson about writing arguments in a persuasive memo was given one or two days before the memo was due! The curriculum is uniform, so some genius decided this was an excellent plan and the poor profs were stuck trying to calm panicking students down by telling them, “It’s not graded, so don’t worry about it.” Like not turning it in was an option. Sigh- what a pain.

Legal Writing Sucks. 2006 October 9

Posted by stephaniesays in Uncategorized.
2 comments

Legal writing is worth nearly nothing but is beyond time consuming. We just turned in our first memo–a closed one with a bunch of cases to choose from. In the last few weeks I seriously edited that sucker 10 times over. I pulled out words and simplified. Threw in citations (ughh bluebooking is evil). I attempted to make shitty analogies between equally shitty cases. It was not fun. My classmates seemed to not to fair as well as I did though.

I went into the library yesterday evening about 7 only to find a large portion of the 1L class furiously clicking at their keyboards, waiting in line to print, and generally in a bad mood. People did not sleep, go home, or even shower between yesterday evening and this afternoon. They have actually given us so much time to work on this thing to the point where it really did not require an all-nighter. Maybe law school has made people lazier?

A few notations:

1. Relationships are becoming strained, and not because of academics. The amount of time people spend together–especially my group of friends–is intense and we have picked up on one anothers annoying habits. We also have no line that cannot be crossed, which is creating a bit of tension. I’m looking for ways to break out and meet people NOT in law school but having a hard time figuring it out. Any ideas? I need to run away now and then.

2. Woo! Contracts rocks!

3. I am so so so glad it is not this time last year.

Career Services 2006 September 27

Posted by queencru in Uncategorized.
2 comments

This board has been dead for a while, so I figured I’d liven it up. I have a friend who alleges that every student thinks his/her career services office is crap. I know I’ve definitely heard that here, and heard that about multiple other schools, but is anyone at a school where people give rave reviews of their career services office?

What do people really expect from career services? Is it that people go in expecting career services to find them a job? Or that the OCI process sucks? What would a career services office have to do to be considered good?

More on section three 2006 September 5

Posted by Lily in Uncategorized.
14 comments

I know e-mail replies to comments can be flaky, but I figured it should be posted anyway.

I honestly don’t know the specific employment placement statistics for Section Three and Section Other students. Entering Section Three students definitely seem to be more public interest and government oriented. However, I know most law students who want to do PI change their minds once they sit down with a financial aid counselor, and I’m not sure whether Section Three students do the same thing. The ones I know feel compelled to take this convoluted path. I hate to say it, but my fellow liberal hipsters have a noticeable lack of financial common sense. LRAPs sound great, but they’re all bad — it’s just a question of degree. (Yes, even Yale’s.)

In the interests of full disclosure, I have to tell you that the section three alumns I knew before entering G’Town were all on the Law Journal — and now they’re are all currently doing federal clerkships. Furthermore, they intend to work for V50s in order to pay off their debt before going back into public interest. I only knew a handful, though, so it’s definitely not a representative sample. They said Section Three was over-represented on LJ, but I can’t confirm whether that’s true.

The thing I’ve heard — which I believe because it came from a legal clinic professor — is that some clinics heavily favor Section 3 students because they think more creatively. However, I’m not sure whether how much of the “increased creativity” stems from analytically unorthodox students self-selecting into the program, or whether it’s because the structure of the curriculum really does encourage students to think in more unusual ways.

I also have no idea why they go out of their way to obscure what it’s about. A Yale 2L told me that some of his professors derided the minimal use of case law, so part of it may be to save face among the law professors with more moderate pedagogical philosophies.

It could also be that it’s hard to explain how it’s structured without a background in legal history and philosophy. I have the former, but not the latter. In fact, I think that’s why I can’t explain it very well yet. I’ll start working on a longer post on this topic when I can.

However, knowing how universities work, it’s probably something far more mundane. I’d imagine that, at some point, the law school communications director asked for a paragraph on the program, and someone gave her the original grant proposal. Chances are, she didn’t really understand what it was about, and the blurb reflects her flawed interpretation.

But I’m a cynic that way.

Score! 2006 September 2

Posted by Lily in Uncategorized.
4 comments

So Section Three is, um, weird. Part of the weirdness is that we have two classes that no one else in the country does: a “Legal Justice Seminar” (aka, Introduction to Philosophy of Law) and “Government Processes.”

Government Processes is essentially Introduction to Administrative Law. Now, this sounds vaguely boring, but word from the upperclassmen is that it isn’t. Why? It’s taught a bit differently than its 2L and 3L counterparts at other law schools. Instead of an overview, they ask a question, and look at the various ways legislators, exeuctives, lawyers, and regulatory agencies have addressed the question during the twentieth century. (The emphasis, of course, is on the “regulatory agency” component.)

This year’s question? “How should our society manage health risks?”

Squee!

Also, I think this may be part of the reason why G’Town sends so many more people into government than other schools. Part of it is self-selection: people who choose Georgetown over higher-ranked schools do so because they want to work in government. (And despite what you may hear on various internet discussion forums, I’m not the only one: during orientation, I ran into a bundle of people who I originally met at NYU and Michigan’s admit days.)

Now, if you really want to work in government, chances are you know that regulatory agencies are where all the real power is these days. However, if you don’t know this, Georgetown makes damn sure you understand it by the time you graduate. I’m just wondering when they point out that a) the DOJ’s pay scale doesn’t apply to many of these agencies’ lawyers, making entry-level salaries only slightly lower than private practice and b) the DOJ’s normal hiring policies and practices also don’t apply. Instead, many agencies are allowed to have their own, which ultimately gives D.C.-based students a huge advantage.

Even if they don’t, the numbers of Georgetown students who go work for these firms leads me to believe that they figure it out for themselves.

High school, maturity, and cliques 2006 August 17

Posted by Lily in Uncategorized.
2 comments

In Steph’s comments to Queen Cru, she says that no one has ever excluded them and thus to keep themselves from ending up so, they exclude others.

I think there’s quite a bit of to this. However, I think it goes further: they don’t want to be accepted by others because their worldview places those “others” beneath them.

Actually, this reminds me of a conversation I had as a teenager. My boyfriend’s dad was the principal of a neighboring high school, and even though the county was divided up into several districts, the principals made a point of periodically getting together to compare concerns. They were all surprised by how few “inter-clique” problems there were: most of the fights at the high school level involved students within the same group. Widespread bullying existed between different cliques in elementary school, but didn’t seem to make the jump to middle or high school.

However, when inter-clique issues did arise, they almost always involved the athletic crowd. We had never really thought about it in those terms before, but we realized Mr. B. was right: the freak crowds got along with the geek crowds. But to be honest, my view may be skewed by the fact that I was my high school’s version of Lindsay Weir — right down to the Mathletes Competition.

Possibly because none of us had ever heard of Freaks and Geeks at the time, we ultimately attributed this to two things. The first, and most important, was our school’s size. Because it was so large, people simply didn’t have the energy to keep up with people in other cliques. The second was how that led to perceptions of other groups. Yes, the various sub-groups of freaks and geeks had their own interests, but for the most part, they didn’t think it made them “better” compared to other sub-cliques.

Consequently, that attitude of “different but equal” was expanded when comparing their meta-clique with other meta-cliques. The primary difference in sub vs. meta-clique comparisons was in terms of how they viewed the tradeoffs. Instead framing it in terms of personal preferences (e.g., “yeah, violins are great, but I just prefer drums,” or “Elliot Smith is good, but I prefer The Assistant“) freaks and geeks tended to agree that any advantage gained by geeks’ intelligence was offset by not getting laid.

The groups who really did think they were better were the athletes. And I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

Maturity/Age in Law School 2006 August 17

Posted by queencru in Uncategorized.
13 comments

It seems like this is getting to be a big topic on here lately, so I figured I’d devote a post to it. I’m in my late 20s and I think that there is often a huge difference between people who have just graduated from college and people who have been out at least a year or two. I think most (but not all) people would benefit from taking at least a year off between undergrad and college, because it seems like many people are going into law school to extend the undergrad experience or because their parents thought it was the right thing for them to do. There are many people who have worked through college and are very mature at graduation and ready to go to law school right away.

I think that there’s the biggest disconnect between some older and younger women for very valid reasons. Older women without children are potentially giving up a chance to have their own biological children to go to law school. Those who do want children can’t work in a big law firm for 5 years to pay off loans, because by the time they get out and have been in the new job long enough to take maternity leave, they’ll most likely have to go on fertility treatment to be able to conceive. I’m not that obsessed with having biological children that it bothers me too much, but some women really want that. Women with children have to think about how it will affect their families and whether it is worth it to have the whole family make a big sacrifice for 3 years in the hopes that their lives will be better in the long run. A lot of self-doubt comes into play when you know your options coming out of law school will not be the same as your options are now, like it is for younger women.

Thank God I’m not the only one… 2006 August 16

Posted by Lily in Uncategorized.
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…who thinks business budgets and universities can be, well, bad.

Most people don’t know it, but this structure was one of the first things Judith Rodin did when she became Penn’s president over a decade ago. [1]

Now, I haven’t looked over the LSU budget, but there seem to be a few notable differences between it and Penn. The first is that Penn centralized some things, like technology purchases, to get better deals and improve intra-University communications. Penn also seemed to fire more secretaries. At the same time, JRo and minions dictated what buildings had to be built and which schools would foot the cost for building them, regardless of whether the schools had the resources to accomplish the tasks.

Perhaps the biggest difference between the two, however, is that this strategy “worked” for Penn. Even though alumni donations doubled under Rodin, the gains weren’t evenly distributed. Rather, the new policies were a boon for the professional programs churning out wealthy alumni because they get to keep their alumni donations; however, other divisions have had far more financial woes. (The situation has improved over the past few years, but there’s still a substantial disparity.) [2]

I’d have to go through Penn’s budget again, but I have to wonder whether the difference in outcome between Penn and LSU stems from two sources. The first is specifically how facilities improvements are handled (although the Trammell Crow incident may make it a wash between the two schools). The second is how much of their total revenue comes from research and alumni donations. Furthermore, at Penn and the other Ivies that I’m familiar with, if you exclude the health system, roughly one-third of the operating budget comes from federal research dollars and alumni donations. (However, you wouldn’t know it from how the DP slants articles.) Since English majors (at least the ones without law degrees) rarely make enough money to buy buildings, SAS suffered — especially compared to Wharton. (And when they do donate insane amounts of money, the funds are earmarked.)

Blargh. Why is it that half of college administrators don’t understand money at all, and the ones who do have a business background brainlessly apply what they learned in class, without bothering to adjust for the fact that education isn’t a widgets factory? And they wonder why I don’t donate.

[1] Ignore the bullshit about how this financial system “supports” interdisciplinary studies. If that were true, I wouldn’t have had to hire a lawyer and waste three years of my life to resolve a problem that would have been fixed in five minutes elsewhere. Not that I’m bitter or anything.

[2] Does anyone else find it interesting that the big ticket joint-degree programs, like Huntsman and M&T, are technically based in non-Wharton schools — even though their students identify with — and consequently, donate to — Wharton. Way to have SAS and SEAS foot the real cost of your proposal, Huntsman!