Student Post: “Law School: Friends, Not Foes”

Hi everyone! My name is Cory Lamz. I graduated from the University of Denver in Denver, CO, with a B.A. in Journalism, Digital Media Studies and Marketing. I worked full-time as a journalist in some capacity or another throughout undergrad, finishing my degree in November 2012. I worked in telecommunications for six months before diving into law school. I’m a dual-degree student here at Northeastern, which means that I am in a four-year JD/MS program; the masters of science degree is in Music Industry Leadership Studies.

I’m originally from Colorado Springs, CO – about an hour south of Denver. A large portion of my family lives in Colorado, and I’m the first to ever really leave the nest that is the Rocky Mountains. I didn’t know anyone in Boston before moving, which made me a little nervous, but the NUSL community quickly changed that.

I went to visit other law schools before deciding on Northeastern. At other law schools, the student community was a mixed bag. At one school, students acted petty toward one another. At another, students were harshly competitive. And I didn’t even visit those schools during finals! I can’t imagine how students would act when the pressure to do well was even higher. Nevertheless, at Northeastern, the students are different.

From day one, I was building relationships and making friends left and right with people who were as excited to be in law school as I was – something very easy to do in NUSL’s welcoming environment. As someone who was moving to a new city halfway across the country, this community was one I knew I would come to rely on and consider my East Coast family. I was right.

My new friends – the southern charm of Kiel from Mississippi to the inspiring work ethic of Ally from New York to the countless others from near or far – have been there for every adventure in Boston up to this point. I can’t say every 1L’s experience is or will be the same as mine, but in a lot of ways, 1L year feels a lot like freshman year of college all over again, in that there’s always someone to study with, tour the city with, or go on some new adventure together. I’m not sure if I’d have the same experience at a different law school, but I am absolutely, 100 percent certain that Northeastern’s emphasis on community has made it that much easier – seemingly effortless – to build friendships that will last.

In class, this communal atmosphere translates into what I consider to be an academic Thanksgiving dinner – when the professor isn’t lecturing, students volunteer answers and comments left and right, to the point where there’s never really any downtime. (Yep, we still get cold called, and that’s really intimidating sometimes, but it’s not as bad as you’d think. More on cold calls and my first cold call experience later.) Class is intense and engaging and demanding, but it doesn’t ever feel like I’m seated in the third row, middle seat of a pressure cooker. Such a feeling makes the Northeastern Law experience unique.

This open-community feeling isn’t just one in the classrooms. Professors are approachable and actually care about the well-being of their students. They say hello in the hallways – hey, it’s the little things that go a loooong way – and they respond to emails within a reasonable time-frame. They have repeatedly told my 1L class that we’d have to try, like really try, to fail their classes – not because passing grades are guaranteed (they aren’t) but because there are so many academic resources available to students enabling us to do well, in addition to the supportive law school community cheering for us along the way.

So stick around and watch this space! In the coming months, I’ll continue to blog about my NUSL experience, academics, student life, and Boston as a whole. Now I have to get back to prepping for my Property class.

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