Time for new pencils, casebooks and notebooks. Time for dusting off my backpack and loading it up for a crazy year. Time to go back to school. My busy summer is over and my 3L year has begun. This year is my last year of law school… actually, my last year of school ever. I am excited for the third (and last, thank God!) year of law school, also known as the “bored to death” year. However, my final year is gearing up to be anything but boring. Here is a look at my first day back to school for the very last time!
My Last First Day EVER?
When I imagined my last first day of school, I expected some sort of great celebration or something like a grand journey coming to its close. I have been in school since I was 2 ½ years old. I went immediately from K-12 to undergraduate, graduated a semester early then started law school in the Fall. School has been my life and being a student has been my identity for such a long time. So while this feels like the end of my story, I realize that is just the end of one of the chapters of my life. Nevertheless, my last first day of school was a bit anticlimactic. I woke up (like normal), ate breakfast and got ready (like normal), sat in traffic (like normal) and attended classes and other activities. The main feeling I had was exhaustion, much like my fellow 3Ls. There was a weird sense amongst us 3Ls though. When we all saw the new 1Ls who looked terrified and stressed out, we had this strange phenomenon of deja vu. It felt like we had just been in their shoes–starting a crazy thing called law school and trying to figure out what the heck we were doing. Now, we are the “seniors” of law school and expected to have all the answers.
My 3L Year
Personally, I have always had a problem saying no to things. I never like to turn down an opportunity because you never know where that experience will take you. This is something I have always lived by and how I have been a successful first-generation college student. Although I would argue that this is one of my strengths, my “yes-man” personality can sometimes put me in situations where I am overwhelmed and stressed out. My 3L year is one of those situations. Last year, I thought I had the busiest years of my life. Almost as if I wanted to top my 2L year in the stress category, I decided to take on more opportunities than I have ever accepted before.
One new experience I am looking forward to is being in a law clinic at my law school. I am participating in the Disability Law Clinic for my Fall semester. Michigan has a student practice law which allows upperclassmen law students to represent, negotiate, and appear in court on behalf of clients before they graduate law school or take the bar exam. In my first week back, I was sworn in by one of the Michigan Supreme Court Justices, and I am now officially a “student attorney.” I am looking forward to the new challenges and experiences that I will face in the clinic this semester!
Something that is looming over me is obviously the bar. This formidable, two-day exam is the grand finale to my law school chapter. It will separate me from being able to practice law as an attorney. It is safe to say that I am a little more than nervous for the bar exam. Scratch that, I am terrified of the bar exam. Personally, I have always done really well in school but standardized tests were always my downfall. What if I have spent all this time in law school and preparing for the bar only to fail it? Honestly, it is a big fear of mine. Fortunately I have secured a bar prep course already and will take my preparation really seriously. I want to do well and the anxiety will push me to work hard and be successful.
Excited For The Last Year!
Despite the new experiences, busy schedule, and fear of the bar exam, I am really looking forward to my last year of law school. I have grown so much since my 1L year, and I am excited to see what this year has in store for me. I know I am going to be busy and have to be as disciplined as ever. I will have to push through the exhaustion and feelings of dread to be successful and finish this year strong. I am excited for the last chapter of my law school “book” and the last step in the law school wing of my legal journey. Even though my last first day was not the extraordinary occasion that I had dreamed it to be, I am glad that I am at this point in my career. It is time to work harder than I ever have before and survive my last year of law school.
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