From the blog

Oregon Department of Justice Seeking Applications for Honors Attorney Program

The Oregon Department of Justice would like to inform you of opportunities available through the Department’s Honors Attorney Program. The Department is now seeking applications for the September 2015 program. Briefly, the Honors Attorney Program is designed to provide exceptional recent law school graduates—including those who have served as judicial clerks or in government fellowships—with the opportunity to gain public law experience after law school and provides a foundation for growth and success in the profession of law.  Honors Attorneys will immediately handle their own caseload and have the opportunity to work on some of the most pressing issues facing…

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Attorneys Across America: Featuring Lauren Damen

Known as the "Live Musical Capital of the World," Austin, Texas was named by Forbes as one of the best cities for job growth in 2014.  I reached out to Lauren Damen, an associate at Graves, Dougherty, Hearon & Moody, to find out what it's like to practice law in the Lone Star State.  Ms. Damen’s full bio appears at the end of this post. KW:  Where do you practice law? LD:  At the law firm of Graves, Dougherty, Hearon & Moody.  Our firm is located in Austin, Texas, but many of the clients we represent are based or located in other cities,…

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Save-the-date: Ms. JD Global Education Fund Boston Cocktail Hour, September 13, 2014

Ms. JD’s Global Education Fund Presents: First Annual Boston Cocktail Hour Save the Date! SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2014 1238 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge MA 02138 Harvard Square On Saturday, September 13, 2014, Ms. JD’s Global Education Fund will host its 1st annual Boston Cocktail Hour to raise money for its eight women law scholars at Makerere University in Uganda.  The Global Education Fund (GEF) enables women in developing countries to pursue legal educations who would otherwise lack access to higher education. GEF partners with Makerere University in Uganda, where over 45% of women over the age of 25 have no schooling and men…

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Combating Mental Illness in the Legal Profession

As the untimely death of Robin Williams demonstrates, mental illness is an important issue that demands an honest discussion. This conversation is surely needed in the legal profession, where study after study indicate that mental illness and its consequences predominant the legal profession more than in the population as a whole. Yet, there are resources available to law students and lawyers that aim to combat mental illness. Mental illness manifests itself in a variety of forms, including depression, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and anxiety. Why is the legal profession so prone to suffer from mental…

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The Law School Lowdown - Book Review

Three reasons why I would recommend this book to anyone interested in law school: 1.      Comprehensiveness - I’ve read lots of law school and law school application books so I wasn’t expecting to learn anything new when I picked this book up.  Yet I was pleasantly surprised that I did learn something (what text book supplements are and which ones to get, etc). Most books focus on one aspect of law school. This gave a broad yet detailed overview of the whole picture. 2.      Experience of the author – Many applicants attend law school directly from college, so naturally I…

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Heather Asher

Press Release:  Election of New Board Member Akunna Cook

Katie Larkin-Wong, Chair of Ms. JD’s Board of Directors, announced that the Board unanimously voted to appoint Akunna Cook to the Board.  "Akunna brings a wealth of experience to Ms. JD's Board," Katie stated regarding Akunna joining the Ms. JD Board.  "We were impressed by her commitment to fostering diversity, her past success promoting institutional change to remove barriers to women's promotion in the foreign service, and her international experiences. We are excited to welcome her to the team." Akunna graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Howard University and has a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy…

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NWLSO Programming Needs? Give Bootcamp a Try!

Having trouble developing programs for your chapter of NWLSO? Borrow a page from the playbook of the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law Women Law Students' Association (WLSA) and host a skills "boot camp" for your law school community!  Last year, WLSA hosted its inaugural Spring Bootcamp: a three-day program designed to fine-tune members' professional skills and equip them for their future endeavors. Co-chaired by members Cara Christian and Jenna Verity, with strong support from WLSA President Kristina Keffeler, the program consisted of three events: Legal Applications 411, What Not to Wear, and Women Advancing in the Law. Students, attorneys and administrators alike remarked…

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A Firm of Their Own: Mikayla Kellogg and Kelly Van Aken

I've been following the law firm of Toscano Kellogg & Van Aken since the firm launch, not only because the partners were law school classmates of mine, but because it's wonderful to watch two smart, dynamic women (along with their male partner, Eric) pave a new path for themselves. It also helps that they have beautiful branding--ever since going through the Ms. JD re-branding process, I have a newfound appreciation for a good brand! I asked Mikayla Kellogg and Kelly Van Aken to tell us what it was like to take the leap from BigLaw and give us some insight on the challenges and rewards of building…

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Choosing Law Schools

When it comes to law schools, there are so many great choices. How do you even begin narrowing it all down? In this post, I hope to shed some light on how to choose law schools that will be a good match for you. HOW MANY SCHOOLS SHOULD I APPLY TO? I recommend applying to six to eight law schools. You could apply to fewer or more, but if you’re applying to more than ten schools, you should take a close look at whether you are serious about attending every one of your schools or if you’re just applying for…

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Laura Bladow

Ms. JD Pre-Law Event in DC - Decision Point: Law School

Is law school the right move for you? Whether you’re just starting to explore the option of law school, or you’re planning to apply in the near future this panel event will provide valuable insight into the law school admissions process, the realities of law school, and what life as a lawyer looks like in today’s economy. On September 9, 2014, Ms. JD and George Washington University School of Law will host Decision Point: Law School. You’ll have the opportunity to have your pre-law questions answered directly by admissions officers, law students, and attorneys. The panel will be followed by…

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How to Manage Your Student Loans as a New Lawyer

Congratulations! You've tackled the bar exam, and you've already started (or are about to start) your first job. You still have many exciting challenges ahead, but one you can deal with today is the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in student debt you have. While there’s no quick fix to eliminating this debt, you can take a few steps now to save thousands over the life of your loans and save valuable time dealing with your lenders this fall. Start by making sure everything is in order with your loan servicers.  This includes updating your contact information (in…

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Journey to Law School-Taking the First Steps

It's been a crazy ride to find myself ending up here...pursuing the law school journey. The crazier thing is, its not just me, but two journeys collide! My husband and I are both planning on attending law school next Fall together! As I begin to take the steps that so many others have taken in pursuit of a law career, questions flood my mind. "How will we be prepared?" "What school should I attend?""How will we sort out funding and living arrangements?" "Am I using the right resources to prepare for the LSAT?" "How will we end up being accepted…

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Free Money: Scholarship Opportunities for Minority Law Students.

You decided to go to law school and now you’re in. You check your school’s tuition and see that the cost of attendance is rising and the price tag looks like a nightmare. The cost of a juris doctorate is steep and with future graduates facing job uncertainties in a tough legal market, the financial burden of law school can be daunting. While accepting mountains of debt is a tough decision to make, it is one that could be made less difficult if funding were more accessible. To help reduce the cost of law school, there are a number of…

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Laura Bladow

Ms. JD Pre-Law: Insights from the Ms. JD Board Recap Part II

Ms. JD's second online pre-law event took place last night as a group of the Ms. JD Board of Directors shared their pre-law insights in a Google Hangout! In case you missed it, you can check out the YouTube video below to catch up!  Miss Part I? Catch up here!  If you're looking for more pre-law advice be sure to download Ms. JD's Pre-Law Prep Guide, follow along on Twitter @msjdtweets, and join us next week for our Twitter Chat on Thursday, August 28th at 2pm ET to share your pre-law experiences!

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Deconstruct to Become You: The Path to Professional Transformation

Whether you are 25 years old and fresh out of law school or 65 with forty plus years of life and professional experiences behind you, the path to professional reentry or transformation often requires a deconstruct: an uncomfortable period of questioning traditional assumptions about identity, what it means to be a lawyer, and how best to make a meaningful contribution and/or simply make a living. And, at the risk of discouraging you from reading further, characterizing this stage as “uncomfortable” may in fact be a gross understatement. Law school taught us to identify, research, and analyze complex legal issues; to…

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