With graduation just around the corner, I decided it was the perfect time to re-watch one of my favorite movies of all time—Legally Blonde. As I watched Elle Woods deliver her commencement speech, it finally hit me that law school really is coming to a close for me. How did three years go by so quickly?
When I first joined Impact during my 1L year, I had hoped that my final post would be about all of my favorite memories of my time at law school. Three rounds of Ski Trip, Law Prom, and Softball. Funny stories from countless bar reviews where the whole school decided to take a break from studying and gathered at a bar downtown. Long nights at the library trying to cram for a final in solidarity with my classmates, and on-campus events that always led to free lunch.
But sadly, that is not what happened. When the pandemic first hit, nobody had any idea how long things would be different, or how long we would be home. I remember first hearing whispers in March 2020 that “this will just be two weeks.” I even intended to be back in April to celebrate my birthday with friends. Then, all of a sudden, it’s been over a year of this, and things still aren’t back to normal. The vaccine rollout brings hope, but my classmates and I still won’t get the in-person graduation with all of our friends and families that we worked so hard to earn (and so much deserve).
When I started law school, I had no clue what I was getting myself into. I had worked for a few years, and it was strange to think about being in a classroom and having homework again. Plus, I knew that law school was going to be a completely different beast than college, with things like the curve, outlining, and cold calls. Luckily, BC Law fosters an extremely supportive environment, including by assigning upperclassman mentors to 1Ls, and tries to give you all the tools you need for success early on. But most of what I figured out about law school was through trial and error. Therefore, I reached out to a few 1Ls with the following question to see what they learned from their first semester at BC Law.
You’ve survived your first semester of law school. Looking back, what advice do you have for your first semester 1L self?
One thing that I’ve really loved about BC Law is the opportunity to develop lawyering skills outside of the classroom. Right now, 2Ls are in the midst of competing in the prestigious Wendell F. Grimes Moot Court competition. In honor of this notable law school experience, I sat down with Sarah Nyaeme, President of the Board of Student Advisors (and my roommate), to learn more about the competitions offered at BC Law.
Tell us a little bit about the Board of Student Advisors and what role the BSA plays in law school academic competitions.
The Board of Student Advisors is the student-led organization that helps facilitate and run the various advocacy programs at BC. These programs include the ABA Negotiation and Client Counseling competitions, Moot Court, and Mock Trial. The BSA includes both 2L and 3L co-chairs who are assigned to specific competitions. In addition, we have 1L representatives who shadow the co-chairs and assist with the behind-the-scenes work.
Can you provide us with an overview of the various competitions?
Deciding where to go to law school is no easy task. If you are anything like I was, you may still be deciding if a city or traditional campus is right for you. You also may even be wondering if you are more of an East Coast or West Coast person (or something in between). Well, lucky for you, BC Law is hosting Admitted Student Month, which kicked off on March 1! Throughout the month of March, BC will be hosting a ton of live and recorded content, which you can find out about here.
Although this virtual world is not what any of us hoped for, both the administration and students have tried to find ways to connect with prospective students and share why we love BC Law, while answering any questions future students may have. One unique way that I have particularly enjoyed meeting prospective students is through the virtual coffee chats.
Just last week, my roommate and I hosted one over Zoom and we received a number of good questions. It immediately made me realize that many of the questions we were receiving were largely due to the fact that students can’t visit campus (if this is true for you, be sure to check out the brand new virtual tour.) Although coffee chats are still taking place throughout March (and you can sign up here), I thought it would be helpful to provide a roundup of some of the questions we’ve received, as well as our responses.
BC Law places a heavy emphasis on experiential learning, beginning your 1L year. But as a 2L and 3L, you have the opportunity to dive even deeper into practice through externships or clinic experiences. You can learn more about the clinic offerings at BC here, but because I decided to take the externship route, I’ll reflect on that experience.
Through BC’s Semester-in-Practice program, students are given the opportunity to secure job placements in Boston or beyond for course credit. The number of hours per week depends on the placement and the student, and all students must participate in a weekly seminar as well. I decided to spend last semester at Tripadvisor, where I worked (virtually due to COVID) 4 days a week.
January 27, 2021 will always hold a special place in my heart. It marks my last first day of school ever! (Well, that’s the plan at least.)
We again find ourselves in hybrid mode, where larger classes are online and most smaller classes are in-person, with social distancing measures in place. We also are starting much later because of the school’s decision to cancel spring break. Needless to say, we have another unconventional semester ahead.
But as we kick off this semester, I wanted to reflect on some of the small things that I took for granted in pre-pandemic times that I hope return to BC Law as soon as possible:
The Fall 2020 semester has (finally?) come to a close. 2Ls and 3Ls finished exams on the 12th, and the 1L exam period ended on the 18th. Congratulations to all on surviving one strange semester! Although it seems like next semester will mostly look the same (large classes online, many smaller classes in-person, and a fully-virtual option), the recent news on the vaccines has me optimistic.
Before we all take our much-needed winter break, the Impact Blog wanted to thank all of our readers for staying engaged with our content and listening to our experiences throughout the semester. Over the past semester, we welcomed students back to campus, reflected on the silver linings of online classes, shared why Black Art Matters, gave an honest viewpoint on burnout, highlighted why we love BC Law, discussed reasons for going to law school during a pandemic, proposed ways to mend the political divide, admitted we missed the free finals coffee, offered advice ahead of OCI, gave words of encouragement about belonging, and much, much more. We hope you enjoyed reading our posts as much as we enjoyed sharing them!
We’re also excited to share that we broke our all-time record for readers this year: more than 34,000 people viewed over 55,000 pages of Impact content in 2020 (and counting).
Don’t forget to subscribe to the brand new Just Law podcast on all your favorite podcast platforms. We are excited to continue sharing our stories with you in 2021, but until then, happy holidays! Stay safe and enjoy this (extremely long) winter break. See you next year!
Courtney Ruggeri is a third-year student and president of the Impact blog. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2020 was not the year any of us expected. Given everything happening in the world around us, it is easy to lose sight of the good. But in honor of Thanksgiving, I wanted to reflect on a few things that I am most thankful for.
If you talk to most people at BC Law, they’ll agree that it’s a special place. It’s a place where you’ll make lifelong friends, where you’ll be challenged to think by your professors, and a place that allows you to join one of the strongest alumni networks. Looking back on my time at BC over the past few years, I can confidently say that I chose the best law school for me.
But instead of just hearing all of the reasons why I love BC, I thought you’d like to hear from a few 1Ls, 2Ls, and 3Ls who shared their favorite parts of BC Law:
Here at BC Law, community is a central part of student life. Unsurprisingly, the pandemic has changed the way that BC students can interact with each other, both inside and outside of the classroom. For instance, the BC Orientation Program for 1Ls, LLMs, and transfer students was completely virtual, and back on campus we must maintain proper social distancing and wear masks at all times. But still, the desire to maintain friendships and experience Boston is important to many, even if it looks and feels a little different. Therefore, I wanted to share with all of you some ways that my friends and I plan to enjoy the great outdoors before we get hit with the Boston winter weather.