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Advice for 1L online law student?

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I’m a 30 year old married to a 28yr old. I’m about to start online law school and am seeking advice on passing the baby bar, as well as, general advice being a law student and passing the bar exam. Theirs a ton of advice on google but would love to hear from personal experiences. I also work full-time at Staples. In summary: Relationship/Student-life/work balance is all welcome. #law yeah #lawyer #college #job #law #law-school

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Alexandra’s Answer

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Hi, I did not attend law school online but I did work 20 hours a week during my 2L and my 3L years. I honestly wish that law school took 2 years, like MBA programs, I do not see value to the third year. Tuition is a huge rip off and there is little practicality to what you learn throughout all the 3 years. I think what matters is that you have to seperate academia from your profession. Obviously, study hard and get good grades. But, more importantly, look for practical experiences and do not allow studies to get in the way of making personal networking connections and doing real work. A lot of people may think that when you are in school, you should not work. I find the opposite to be true. As you go through school classes, it is even more important to work in a real life setting. I would encourage you to look for something outside Staples that has legal skills involved.

Finally, as far as studying for the bar exam goes, the only way to do that is to simply dedicate 3-4 hours a day in the span of about 2 months where you are studying, with no distractions. The bar exam study process is like a download into your brain of information which you likely will not need, and which you will forget rather quickly. That said, you need to get through it. It is no different than any other standardized test and it is by no means an objective way to assess how good you would be as a lawyer.
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Henry’s Answer

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Hi Justin,

I agree with many of the comments above that law school is really an endurance test and one of the things that helped me the most was figuring out what I was good at by figuring out what I wasn't good at. 1L year was honestly the worst time to get a good grasp of if you'll make a good career out of law since everyone is competing on exactly the same topics, putting in almost all their hours in the week, and chasing the same objective of landing that OCI position at the start of 2L year.

I would say 2L year is the actual start of the race to figure out how to make a career after law school by virtue of your ability to pick and choose what classes you want to take and furthermore the ability to act on class recommendations by the variety of peer mentors I recommend you reach out and look for. I did not have a career until I enrolled into the joint JD/LLM Tax program at my university and did a (second) OCI purely for Tax at the beginning of 3L year.

3L could end up two ways. 1. You're not set yet and are actively looking for post-law school employment, or 2. You are set and free to take the classes you wanted and learn all there is to learn about the law that you care about. The latter is a great place to be and I've made some of the best lasting connections with professors once its made known that you're learning from them purely out of intellectual curiosity. The former is also perfectly okay, some of my peers got offers as late as the year after law school.

The bar exam for me was non-stop Barbri every day, keeping up with those long videos (Some topic lecturers are dry, but once a while you'll get a really funny lecturer and you'll remember them for the rest of your career), and then reviewing with the critical pass flashcards. I ended up over preparing for it, but the alternative has a real cascading effect that would be better to avoid if possible.

Hope that helps!

Henry

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Lindsey’s Answer

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Law school is an endurance sport. Best thing to do is tap into the way you study best and don't deviate from that. For example, if you know you study best by yourself with no distractions, do your best to create that study environment for yourself, and perhaps stay away from group studying. Also, if you are used to a more practical way of studying and learning, prepare to relearn. The law school teaching format is not intuitive to most people.
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Amandeep’s Answer

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Hi Justin,

Going into your 1L year is going to be a challenge -- its a completely new subject matter and you're going to be bombarded with new material everyday. Try to keep up and schedule your day to make sure you're not falling behind -- your first year of law school is the most important year. Of course, the first year alone will not dictate your future, but its going to be the first major step towards obtaining an internship and employment once you graduate.

Make sure to keep to your schedule and always "outline" key material you learn every week. This will help prep you for final exam review.

Hope this helps.
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Jonathan’s Answer

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Passing the CA bar is difficult but not impossible The CA bar is the most difficult. Get in on a state and mine bar review. I would just take practice tests both multiple choice and essay. It is what worked for me in Florida. I am sure you will pass the bar. Finding a job in CA is very difficult. It is the toughest job market to break into.
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