The Deadman Night Rider

A forum for evening students of the SMU Dedman School of Law and other outlaws..

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

What it's like -

The Legal Diva has a link to a 1L describing her first few weeks of law school at Catholic University (although the by-line says she eventually graduated from George Mason). I thought the post was amusing since she listed the exact schedule of classes that I have too, but there were several other things she references that don't track with my experience at all.

Maybe I've been exceptionally fortunate - there hasn't been any 'singling out' or being asked to 'stand and deliver'. Some of the "Socratic" sessions have been tough, but always respectful. Maybe it gets harder as we go along, or maybe it really is just a matter of relativity. I've been literally cursed at more than once in my working life, and unfortunately had to answer for mistakes and errors in judgement that cost real money, as I'm sure most of my colleagues in class have. Hell, last night I met a guy who is an M.D. - so he's been through residency and had to cut on dead bodies. I haven't seen too many thin skins.

I think it also reflects well on the faculty that the material hasn't been overwhelming. Beard (the author of the linked article) complains of having a hard time getting perspective on what was being covered. Luckily, all of our 'Big 3' classes seem to have taken the same tack: start at the beginning. For example:

Civil Procedure - we've started out with the complaint, the very first document filed to put a civil suit in motion (after a brief overview of the whole system).

Contracts - Offer and Acceptance. You can't get more basic than that. The prof told us that he used to start with remedies and work backward, but I think this approach is probably better. No need to make a Tarantino film out of the deal by starting at the end, moving to the middle, and ending at the beginning. I will admit that I probably have an advantage in hearing most of this for the second time - Business Law was one whole section of the CPA exam.

Torts - Battery. This seemed kind of strange until I read the background material that indicates this is the oldest tort action, the original base that the system developed from. Once that clicked, the concept seemed pretty cool. Who am I kidding? All this stuff seems pretty cool.

We'll see how the rest of the semester turns out. Right now I don't even mind the dreaded BlueBook, but maybe all that will change. In the words of Michael Medved, "Upward and onward..."

PS: Words for the week:
Ambit
Sua Sponte
Non Obstante Veredicto

4 Comments:

Blogger Andria said...

I have now arrived. My blog has been mentioned in another blog. I liked her article because it sounds like she's here....down to the freezing cold rooms. Good thing I bought the student health insurance, as I am sure that I will quickly be coming down with pneumonia from the frigid conditions!

12:36 PM  
Blogger rattlerd said...

Maybe it's a Catholic thing?

12:58 PM  
Blogger Andria said...

I'm just, again, thrilled that someone is actually reading my blog. No one seems to be commenting on it - which leads me to believe that no one is reading it...because I, of course, will comment on anything.

Did you check out the link on Diva to "Liberally Lean from the Land of Dairy Queen?" He ought to interest you. He's the DA who handled my case in Wise County lo' those long years ago.

1:09 PM  
Blogger nappel said...

I can’t compare experience of law school, never went to one and probably never will…. But this girl who wrote this article sounds like one of those people that I have met before. When I was in school (School of Architecture that is) we would get this type of people every semester. They think that they want to be an architects because it’s prestigious and they (architects) make a lot of money (which turned out to be so NOT true), but then they discover that you actually have to work harder than in any other major. And eventually they’ll drop out or transfer to business school (no offence to Business School people). Eventually, after seeing this over and over, I have realized, it’s not because it’s hard, it’s something else… Some of you will think that this is too harsh, but I believe that some people should not be there. Don’t get me wrong, if you don’t understand something now and there it’s a one thing, and you should try to get as far as you can in your education. But if the whole thing is just too hard maybe it’s not for you…?

12:29 PM  

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