A Letter to my 1L Self

By: Kylie Hamilton (WFU Law ’20)

If I could give one piece of advice to the person I was on the first day of law school, it would be to ask more questions. Ask more questions to my classmates, both in my class and the classes above me; to my professors, and not just the ones on my schedule; and to the staff who help make Wake Law what it is—a real community. Continue reading “A Letter to my 1L Self”

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Reflections on 1L Year: Part One in a Student-Authored Series

By: Drew Winslett (WFU Law ’20) with a brief introduction by Professor Abigail Perdue

I’m a strong believer in the popular saying, “Don’t ever look back except to see how far you’ve come.” That’s why at the conclusion of each semester, I invite my Legal Writing students to complete a reflection, considering which academic strategies worked well and which did not.

This year, I did things differently. During our final Legal Writing class, I provided students with ten different prompts from which to choose. Each prompt invited a different kind of focused reflection. One asked students to discuss their favorite exercise, while another asked them to consider five things they would have done differently this year if given the opportunity. Students had the remainder of our 1.5 hour session to reflect, write, and revise. I invited the authors of the most insightful pieces to publish them here in a student-authored series. So without further adieu . . .

1L Drew Winslett

If I could give one piece of advice to the person I was on the first day of law school, it would be to know that you deserve your spot in law school. The first day of law school was more stressful to me than my first cold-call or my first final exam. This was the day that I realized law school was more than just an answer to “what are you doing after graduation?” Law school had officially begun, and all the horrors and bad experiences that I had heard from others came flooding into my mind. More than anything, the burning questions that had always been in the back of my mind suddenly came to the forefront – “Do I belong here? Can I handle the pressure and the high stakes of law school? Will I succeed?” Continue reading “Reflections on 1L Year: Part One in a Student-Authored Series”

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Moving Forward by Looking Back: Encouraging Students to Practice Mindfulness and Reflection

By: Abigail L. Perdue

Encourage honest and productive self-exploration.

During the first semester of law school, 1Ls process a tremendous quantity of information in an incredibly short and hectic period of time. Hopefully, they also gain discernment as they evolve from analytical surface-dwellers to deep thinkers. For these reasons, a positive and productive 1L year provides an unparalleled opportunity for growth.

Yet to optimize the benefits of the first semester of law school, it is critical for students to practice mindfulness. Thus, throughout the year and again as we commence the spring semester, I encourage my 1Ls to engage in contemplative lawyering and to thoughtfully reflect upon their goals and performance. Below are some suggested ways that you can create a more mindful 1L experience for your students and thus, maximize their learning.[1] Continue reading “Moving Forward by Looking Back: Encouraging Students to Practice Mindfulness and Reflection”

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Journaling Your Way to a Job

By: Dana Graber, Regulatory Counsel, Food Marketing Institute[1]

Attorneys are trained to document nearly everything we do.  In law school, every argument is backed by citation to corroborating case law. Likewise, in the real world, law firms spend thousands of dollars each year for document storage. But are law schools missing the mark when it comes to teaching attorneys-in-progress to consistently document their own skills and accomplishments?  I think the answer is yes, which may ultimately do students a disservice during post-graduate job searches. Continue reading “Journaling Your Way to a Job”

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