Note: My apologies for the lateness of this third and last instalment on law school advice. A member of my family recently passed away, and therefore time and will were missing in action.
The beginning of law school is an exciting moment, as are many new experiences. You are now entering (or you have already entered for some time) the deep, damp, dark and cold underground labyrinth that is law school. You are now a troglodyte … I mean student at law. The comparison to a troglodyte may seem unflattering, but like those mythical creatures you will now dwell in your own world cut out from reality and you will be blind to anything that is not related to law. At first, this strange new world will appear bizarre and unfamiliar, but as you grow accustom to it, it is the rest of the world that will become strange and distant. I may be exaggerating, but barely. It is not a negative thing per se and far from a uniquely law school phenomena (many professional schools create similar settings). Nevertheless, it can sometime be overwhelming and difficult to deal with since we have little frame of reference. Fear not brave new proto-troglodytes for I will try to help you on your quest with these tips and advice on how to survive (and maybe succeed) in law school.
If you read through my last post and still think law school is for you, than you now have the difficult task of choosing where to apply, and, once you get admission letters, of where to go. Choosing a law school is like choosing any other program; everyone will have different priorities and taste. In that respect, this guide is not meant to determine what you should prioritize; instead it is meant to assist you in balancing your preferences with the reality of law school. The following list of consideration is therefore not built in order of importance. It is your task to determine which consideration is more important to you. You should, however, consider them all and avoid basing your decision solely on one point. Moreover, I’m always happy to discuss the matter further with readers in the comments or via email.
Should I go to law should (or some variation) is a question I often get. The short answer is probably not. If you are just thinking about it and you say to yourself “well I have the grades for it”, then you shouldn’t go. For the determined ones, I made this little non-exhaustive list of things you should consider before deciding to apply to law school. Of course it’s based on the Canadian system, but it should remain relevant for other common law countries.