The BC Law Impact blog is running a special series of alumni interviews featuring former Impact bloggers. Catch them all here.
What are you doing now? / What was your path to your current position?
After graduating from BC Law in 2018, I began working at the Kings County District Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn, NY as an Assistant District Attorney. I worked there for about four years until mid-2022, when my husband, son, and I moved to Japan. I am currently learning Japanese and volunteering with a church, in hopes of eventually using my legal education and experience in Japan.
Something you wish you did while at BC?
I wish that I spent more time asking questions and getting to know my professors during office hours!
This year, we launched a spotlight series focused on local foods, because no one should need to search far for good food. We started with a quintessential breakfast staple (bagels), and we then moved to a food item that’s perfect for lunch or dinner on the go (burritos). Today, we’re taking the only logical next step and focusing on desserts. We scoured coffee shops and bakeries in the immediate Newton area surrounding the BC Law campus to determine which one is the best of the best.
Travis Salters and I traveled to six different locations for donuts, cupcakes, tarts, and more. Depending on the breadth of each place’s menu, we opted for one to two treats per stop. Several days later, we have emerged from our sugar comas and are ready to share our results. Whether you’re looking for some goodies for a graduation party or are just treating yourself after a busy year in law school, these are some options to consider.
It’s been an honor to write for Impact. As graduation approaches, I’ve been thinking about what my final post should be about. The words have always come so easily when I sit down to write. But for this last one, the opposite has been the case.
As I sit here staring at the cursor blinking back at me, I think of the ending of Superman Returns, when Lois Lane, a journalist trying to summarize the events of the film, stares at a blank Word document with a flashing cursor under the heading, “Why the World Needs Superman.”
While I’m neither Lois nor Superman, the last three years have been an action packed adventure not easily captured with words.
I’ve always figured my last post would be a reflection on my time at BC Law. But writing such a reflection requires looking back on the last several years and putting things into perspective. How do I sum it all up? After telling stories on this blog and BC Law’s podcast for three years, how do I tell this one final story?
Time flies when you’re having fun — and apparently it flies in law school, too. Jokes aside, as my 1L year comes to a close, I can safely say that I’ve had a great experience at BC so far. Still, looking back, there are certain things I wish I had known beforehand or done differently. For those of you with lawyers in the family or who did a lot more research than me before enrolling, some of these tips may seem like common sense. But for those who are less informed — and as an ode to a classic impact blog series — here are four things I wish I knew before coming to BC.
Remember that your job search is a mutual process– you want to be somewhere that values you as much as you value them.
Two of the biggest reasons I chose BC Law was the high Big Law placement and my positive interactions with the Career Services Office when I was a prospective student. Recruiting for any position out of law school can be very stressful, but our CSO is an experienced and talented group of people who do a great job supporting students in their preferred career paths.
The third reason I chose BC Law, and it cannot be overstated, is the collegial culture. Applying to Big Law jobs and OCI is competitive but I never felt like I was competing with my friends. I had a great support system and loved sharing things I’d learned, mistakes I’d made, and celebrating my friends’ successes when they landed their 2L summer jobs.
Before I go through any of the tips, please bookmark BC’s CSO Drive (BC Law students only, sorry). CSO does an amazing job including everything you could possibly need to know in that drive.
I have written 10 tips to help you navigate the OCI process. If you have questions I did not answer, check out the CSO Drive, speak with CSO, or feel free to reach out to me! I love talking about all things OCI. I would like to give a huge thank you to CSO Associate Director Dorothy Commons who looked over my article to make sure I was sharing accurate information!
What makes law school worth it, in my opinion, is not the time spent with our noses buried in our textbooks or the late nights spent outlining for exams. It’s the everyday interactions you have with the people around you, and the spaces curated for you by fellow students who want to see you thrive and succeed in a comfortable environment. One such space is APALSA.
I have had the honor of being President of APALSA for the past school year. APALSA is the affinity group dedicated for law students who are of Asian-American and Pacific Island (AAPI) descent, yet it is so much more than that. APALSA provides a safe space for AAPI students to bond and socialize over mutual interests and backgrounds. In a predominantly white institution, it is easy to feel out of place as a student of color. APALSA aims to provide a welcoming environment where students can feel comfortable asking questions and having conversations that may be otherwise difficult to have with non-APALSA students. We pride ourselves on being an inclusive community, with most of our events being open to the general public so that they can share and partake in bits of our culture that we grew up on, whether through the delicious food we serve at general body meetings, the advice we offer during our attorney panels, or the social events we organize for students.
This year, APALSA undertook a project like no other: a trial re-enactment of Korematsu v. United States.
After my last final of 1L year, I basically wanted to nap for a month until my internship started in June. However, that isn’t an option if you’re going to apply for Law Review.
Law Review is a scholarly journal, and a majority of law schools have their own versions of this journal that publish research drafted by students and professionals. To become a Staff Writer on the Boston College Law Review, there’s an extensive application process that begins right at the start of the summer. This means, if you aren’t sure whether you want to apply this year, you’ll have to decide in only a few short weeks.
As a 2L who’s nearly done with her first year on Law Review and who lived to tell the tale, I can say with confidence that I’m glad I applied and had this experience. However, there were definitely some things I wish I knew beforehand that could’ve helped me make an even more informed choice when deciding to apply. To ensure you make the right decision in May, weigh the following pros and cons.
ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot developed by OpenAI, has garnered much attention since its launch in November 2022. The program has the capability to generate text that closely mimics human writing in response to a given prompt, and its application has spanned across a range of fields from customer support to legal research.
In an academic context, the conversation often revolves around how students are using the program to write their essays, final exams, and other assignments (Take a look at our recent Impact post In Re: ChatGPT). As a result, many educational institutions have established specific prohibitions on using the chatbot, with Best Colleges even publishing a list of bans. However, I think there is real value in ChatGPT for law students–as long as you use it appropriately.
“Used in the right way, ChatGPT can be a friend to the classroom and an amazing tool […], not something to be feared.”
In support of the well-being of lawyers across the professional spectrum—from students in the classroom to attorneys in all walks of legal life—we have launched a Mental Health Impact Blog Series, in partnership with alumnus Jim Warner ’92. Comprising deeply personal essays by community members who have struggled with mental health issues, the series provides restorative insights and resources to fellow lawyers in need.Read them all here.
The Mental Health Impact Blog Series coincides with a Law School-wide initiative, which will include lectures and workshops to support and promote mental well-being. With this latest post, we are also offering a companion podcast interview with Jim Warner and Mike Cavoto (see below).To get involved in the activities or to write a guest post, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Michael Cavoto ’19
This is my story of experiencing personal loss in law school. I’ve kept some details purposefully short and omitted others. The point of this story is to address loss and how we deal with it (or don’t). I will speak only to my own experiences and conclusions. This story also references sensitive matters, including–but not limited to–suicide. If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, please call, chat, or text 988 to speak to someone.
Law school dominates students’ lives: classes all day, networking events in the evenings, pretending to study in the Yellow Room in the afternoons. It demands full commitment from participants.
The grind doesn’t stop after you graduate. Studying for the bar requires dedication and fresh graduates launch themselves fully into bar prep right after graduation.
Professional life doesn’t give much room for breathing either. Lawyers at the big firms are expected to hit the billable requirement, which usually equates to billing somewhere around 40 hours per week of strictly billable time, without factoring in vacations or holidays.
The common word here is “commitment.” The practice of law demands your attention. So, what happens when you can’t fully commit? What happens when reality plucks you away from coursework and legal practice? The question for me was: how could I advance in my professional life when my personal life was so unstable?
Last month, we launched a spotlight series focused on local foods, because no one should need to search far for good food. We started with a quintessential American staple — bagels. Today, we turn to a food that serves as the perfect quick lunch or dinner when you’re heading to or from campus – BURRITOS! Keep in mind, as we mentioned in the first review, the locations we’re critiquing are narrowed to those in the immediate Newton area surrounding the BC Law campus.
We (Tess Halpern and Travis Salters) traveled to six different restaurants for burritos in the span of approximately two hours. To keep our orders consistent, we stuck to one chicken burrito, typically with lettuce, pico de gallo, rice, beans, and cheese inside. Needless to say, we didn’t feel our lightest after this experience. May our sacrifices serve the people!