By Erica ’19
2 weeks until first semester finals, and more than halfway through 1L year. If you asked me on August 29th of this year if I truly knew what I was getting myself into, I would have confidently said, “Law school has been the goal for years, so let’s go!” It’s still my dream to be here, but the realities of 1L year have settled in.
Everyone says taking your time to transition and taking care of yourself are the keys to surviving 1L year. If you’re like me, you’ve read countless blogs, Pinterest boards, tumblrs (if that still is cool?) on what law school is really like. Here’s a list of what worked for me this semester, but the biggest secret is finding what works for you when it comes to work-life balance. Read on to find out how I’ve survived so far.
By Batool ’17 & Melissa ’18
To the Class of 2019: Welcome to NUSL!
It wasn’t long ago that we were in the same position you find yourself today: getting ready to walk the same unfamiliar hallways to get to the same unfamiliar classrooms to learn the same unfamiliar topics. However, in almost no time, you’ll be where we are: running for an SBA position, experiencing the legal world through Co-op, and planning for the future. In the meantime, we wanted to offer you some tips and tricks to making the most of your first year.
by Maddie ’18
Your 1L year, you’re going to feel like you live in the library (or study space of choice). It is going to seem like you are always staring at your Civ Pro book and never get to see the outside world. I’m here to tell you that although that may be true much of the time, there is time to go out and explore Boston – I promise.
Being that I am not from Boston, it took me a week or so to become adjusted to my new city. It took me a few more weeks to branch out beyond my path from home, to school, to the gym, and back home again. Once I branched out, though, I found some favorite places to go.
By Smriti ’17
Summer in the concrete jungle is not as mundane as it sounds. In fact, there are a myriad of events going on weekly to fill up your social calendar and make you forget (even if temporarily) the 50+ action items your supervising attorney gave you for the week.
I can’t speak for other cities, but I have been on co-ops and internships in Boston for the past 2 years while at NUSL. I wouldn’t trade Boston for any other city. Whether it’s summer or winter, Boston always has her arms open with activities that satisfy all sorts of cravings from those of culinary connoisseurs to exercise enthusiasts.
I am here to say that the first semester of law school will be an unnerving, thrilling and often stressful experience. At times this mirrors the many emotions and frustrations you get from traveling abroad. As a person who has done both, I can earnestly say that the two are uncannily similar. So pack up your bag (surely overflowing with casebooks!), map out your flight plan (the fastest route to coffee during your 15 minute break!) and be prepared for a total immersion 1L experience.
by Jennifer Howard, Supervising Attorney of the Domestic Violence Institute
It’s a cold, late November night, when a NUSL 1L student first meets Paul, in the basement community room of a local transitional housing program. After a long day of classes and a rush hour ride to the event, the 1L carefully opens the interview with gentle questions in an effort to establish rapport with Paul. Through the course of the 90 minute consultation, the 1L gains Paul’s trust and listens intently as Paul describes childhood sexual abuse and the domino effect it has had on his life, as he sits now, profoundly depressed, unemployed and essentially homeless. A lack of support and an unwillingness by Paul’s family to validate his experiences have no doubt led him to take advantage of the chance to sit down with a NUSL law student to explore legal options. Welcome to the Legal Advocacy for Victims (LAV) project of the Domestic Violence Institute (DVI) at NUSL.
by Brooke, Class of 2016
Lots of people think that they need to go to law school in the geographic area in which they plan to practice. But while I know that I want to practice immigration law in the Southwest, I did not want to go to school there. After going to undergrad in Arizona, I was ready for a change of pace, and I was committed to going to a law school with a social justice mission. Everyone chooses Northeastern for a slightly different reasons, but some of the most common reasons are 1) it is a school that promotes social justice at the front of its work, and 2) co-op!