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The Unexpected Challenges of Law School: The Emotional Roller Coaster

Editor's Note: This essay was submitted by a first year law student at the University of Michigan in response to Ms. JD's prompt, "What about law school presented an unexpected challenge? What have you done to successfully meet this challenge?" I came to law school expecting to be busy. I knew what I was getting into: long hours pouring over cases, writing memos for Legal Practice, studying for finals worth 100% of my grade. I knew all of that, and I was ready for it. What I was not ready for was the emotional toll that would take on me. Law…

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Alice Shih

The Importance of Replicating the Yale Law Study on Gender

Over the course of the past few weeks, this series has examined the findings from Yale Law Women’s study, Yale Law School Faculty & Students Speak Up About Gender: Ten Years Later. This study was the product of nearly two years of diligence by a board of 12 members and about 50 student volunteers. This study was not undertaken for academic credit. Rather, its authors felt compelled to understand the continuing gender disparity in positions of leadership in the government, judiciary, private sector, and in the legal academy. This Yale Law study is just one study. We urge students to replicate…

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Ms. JD International

Ms. JD International: UN Office of Legal Affairs

The United Nations is the flagship entity in the international sector, and has opportunities for lawyers at headquarters and in the field to work in international law. Similar to the State Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser, the UN has a central Office of Legal Affairs, based at headquarters in New York. The Office of Legal Affairs (OLA) serves as in-house counsel to the UN Secretary-General, the Secretariat as a whole, and the rest of the UN organs.  The OLA is lead by an Under-Secretary-General, an Assistant Secretary-General, and staffed by 160 attorneys. The Under-Secretary General serves as chief legal…

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Alice Shih

Yale Law Study on Gender: Recommendations

Over the course of the past few weeks, this series has examined the findings from Yale Law Women's study, Yale Law School Faculty & Students Speak Up About Gender: Ten Years Later. The study examined in-class and out-of-class dynamics, professors’ perspectives, and students’ perspectives. These findings beg the question, now what? The study is conscientious in recognizing that the disparity must be addressed holistically since neither students, professors, nor the law school administration is completely responsible for the disparity, nor does any one of these groups completely bear the burden of achieving a more equal representation among women and men. Therefore, the…

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Alice Shih

Yale Law Study on Gender: Student Perspective

 This is the fourth post in a series about Yale Law Women’s study, Yale Law School Faculty & Students Speak Up About Gender: Ten Years Later. This post focuses on the results of a 43 question web-based survey regarding gender dynamics at the law school. All current law students at Yale were invited to participate. The survey contained two types of questions. The first type asked students to quantify aspects of their law school experience on a numerical scale. The second type was open-ended, inviting students to use narrative responses to describe their experiences and impressions of gender patterns in…

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Janet

New Resources in the Ms. JD Library

Have you checked out Ms. JD's Library? Did you know that Ms. JD's Library is the most comprehensive collection of resources on women in the law? Currently, the Library includes more than 500 resource abstracts for books, articles, reports, and best practice recommendations on topics ranging from work/life balance and retention issues to stereotyping and gender bias in evaluation and compensation systems.Some new additions to the Library include:Some Strategies to Teach Reluctant Talkers to Talk About Law by Sarah E. RicksThe Language of Performance Evaluations: Gender-Based Shifts in Content and Consistency of Judgment by Monica Biernat, M. J. Tocci, and…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: Young Aspiring Lawyers Meet and Learn about Careers in the Law

This week I am busy working on a presentation for young women college student leaders from across the country.  The National Conference for College Women Student Leaders is  being held this week at the the University of Maryland in College Park.  This conference is a great opportunity for young women to gain information and background on a variety of career options and to have one-on-one discussions with women in those fields and ask important questions about careers of interest to them.It will be my pleasure to speak to these young women.  Most of my speaking events are at law schools,…

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Emily Rock

Montessori 1L: Summer To-Do List

1) Read books for fun I jump-started this item by reading the first book of the Hunger Games trilogy, which had been sitting on my shelf for months, all in one day after I finished my final exam. Friends had assured me, when recommending the novel, that it would be a quick read, but I didn’t want to start anything while I had so much reading to do for class. Reading has always been my main downtime activity, but in law school, the idea of more text in front of my face seems much less fun.  Now, though, I have…

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alisonmonahan

What No One Tells You Before You Go to Law School: You Actually Have to Teach Yourself “The Law”

I have to admit, I was pretty surprised when I showed up to law school and purchased my textbooks. One glance revealed that these were quite different from my undergraduate books. What was up with all of these long cases, followed by a string of questions with no answers? Weren’t these books supposed to teach me “the law”? I definitely wasn’t seeing too many answers! Here’s a little secret: You basically have to teach yourself “the law” in law school! How in the World Can You Teach Yourself? I’ve been thinking a lot about law school pedagogy lately, and reading…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: The Law School Decision Tailored for Women

 Recently, I was asked the following question by a young woman considering going to law school:What do I need to think about or do before applying to law school to make sure that it is right for me?  This young woman was concerned about the impact of a demanding career on her life, and she wanted some assurance that a law career would be a good fit for her.   My response to her also may be helpful to you.First of all, I was delighted that she was giving all of this such serious thought before diving into law school.  Too…

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