You may have read my reflections on my 1L orientation, but I also want to share a list of some of the “culture shock” you will experience in law school.
You may have pack a lunch for school.
I don’t know what it is about law schools, but they typically have really bad food options, just a small café, for example, that sells super-expensive, soggy sandwiches. Though there was this amazing burrito joint not far from my school—but if you ate one of those burritos for lunch, you ended up wanting to sleep through your afternoon classes! So, many law students may need to pack a lunch every day. Wow, before going back to law school, I hadn’t packed a lunch in, say, 10 years. But it may be a good idea.
You don’t wear your nice clothes anymore.
I had been working for a few years before law school and I had a closet full of nice work clothes. I realized quickly in my first days of law school that I wasn’t going to wear those clothes again, unless I was going to a networking event or got a summer job. So off to the mall I went to acquire a “student” uniform, which was all about finding some jeans on sale!
You can’t keep the same hours as you did in undergrad.
This was very true for me, but I think it is also true for most people, especially those who took time off to have a regular job between undergrad and law school. You head back to law school thinking that you will just switch back into college mode. (Staying up super late, not needing to sleep much, going out on a Thursday night—you know what I mean.)
Turns out, if you are away from that life and now a bit older, your body doesn’t want to live like that! In order to pay attention during a 9:00 a.m. Contracts lecture, you need to have had some sleep the night before.
For many, the law school life becomes less like undergrad and more like a really demanding job (which is good practice for getting a really demanding job after you graduate!).
What are you noticing about law school (or what have you noticed, if you are a 2L or 3L)? Please, share your observations in the comments.
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Also, check out these other helpful posts!
- Is handwriting your class notes a good thing or a bad thing?
- How to brief a case in law school.
- What should go into your law school class notes? There are five critical things to include.
- When you’re sitting in class, it’s critical to think through the areas of ambiguity that may make an appearance on a later exam. Here’s one technique for keeping track of everything.
- Going through orientation? Check out Lee’s reflections on her 1L orientation experience.
Looking for some help to do your best in law school? Find out about our law school tutoring options.