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contentdirector

Microaggressions Experienced By Women in Law School

Having just finished my first month of classes as a 1L at law school, I see now how classes, cold calls, and reading assignments can really wear people down and precipitate impostor syndrome. While we fight off self doubts, it is particularly disheartening to also have to defend ourselves from microaggressive commentary—little hints here and there that suggest people’s surprise that I am Harvard material. For example, sometimes when I said I was going to Harvard Law, my conversational partner of the moment would ask, “But did you get accepted?” In response, my internal monologue was usually something like: Ah,…

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AmyImpellizzeri95

Just a Girl in the Room: From Litigator to Novelist

Since my first novel, Lemongrass Hope, was published in 2014, I’ve had the fabulous fortune of being invited to (read: have lovingly crashed) dozens – maybe even close to a hundred book clubs. When we get to the part where I left my career at Skadden Arps in 2009 for what was supposed to be a one-year sabbatical, but stayed away from the law to keep telling stories, I’m often asked an understandable question – so why don’t you use your legal experience to write legal fiction? My answer has always been simple and true. Because I wasn’t a criminal…

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Naomi

Tips for building a Legal Career when you have Caring Responsibilities

In many law school lecture halls, you will now find at least as many women as men.  There are also more students starting higher education (or retraining for a career change) in later life than ever before.  The logical consequence of this is, that more people than ever are having to balance home life commitments with the demands of studying.  And few career paths are as demanding as law! While it isn't only women who have to deal with caring responsibilities, the reality is that we tend to be the ones performing balancing acts more often.  And it's not just children…

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contentdirector

Relevancy of Linguistics: Power From Categories

INTRODUCTION At its core, feminism is equality for women. There are different forms of feminism each uniquely named and categorized by how a person defines equality and the route a person utilizes to achieve equality. These names and categories quickly identify a person’s beliefs as it relates to women’s rights. Ultimately, recognizing common ground and subtle differences enables groups to form and work towards achieving a unified purpose--whether that purpose is short term or long term. This article discusses the power of linguistics, the likelihood that you are a feminist, and why different categories of feminism matter—especially to lady lawyers.…

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ccarden92

Re: Twelve Year Old Girl Lawyer

“You would make a good secretary” – Attorney in my office “Are you a paralegal or a legal assistant?” – Opposing counsel “You’re a lawyer?  But you look like you’re 14.” – Receptionist for my office. I read Ms. Raposa’s Ms. JD blog post about being a twelve-year-old-girl lawyer.  I am a twelve-year-old-girl lawyer.  In reality, I am 25 and I have been out of law school just shy of two years.  The above quotes are just a few examples of the things I hear on a daily basis.  I recognize that blog posts are limited by their nature in…

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alexislamb

Four Reasons Why Telecommuting Is Better For Women (That Have Nothing To Do With The Mommy Thing)

I’m going to throw out a bold prediction. Working from home is better for women. Especially for women in high-intensity, male-dominated professions, such as law. Here are four reasons why – none of which have anything to do with childcare flexibility. 1.That Hair-and-Makeup Thing.   This morning, I witnessed one of my closest friends (a non-lawyer who works in an executive role at a financial institution in Midtown Manhattan) spend close to an hour on hair and makeup prior to leaving for work. After rising before the sun and disappearing into the bathroom, she sat down next to me on…

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skreed

Skirting the Ceiling: Hope in the Aftermath of Harvey

To celebrate the end of the first week of school and the start of 2L year, Hurricane Harvey flooded Houston and wreaked widespread havoc on a city that houses a population similar to that of the entire state of Delaware. As a citizen of Houston, I saw firsthand the damage my childhood neighborhood took from a tornado and subsequent flooding that drove thousands from their homes. I watched on the news as flooding caused evacuations, explosions, power outages, and contamination of drinking water due to chemical plant and water treatment plants’ inundation. Each and every day, we woke up news…

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tammyzhu

Join the Conversation:  Benefit of the Doubt

We all make mistakes.  On a recent team I managed, everybody made mistakes – from the contract document reviewers, to the eDiscovery vendor, to the associates.  Yet some people’s mistakes will become easily forgotten while others will become remembered for their mistakes.  What determines whose mistakes get forgotten and whose get remembered?  Could it be our race, ethnicity, and gender?  I will argue that in our workplace and our community, the difference between those who succeed and those who don’t depends heavily on the way that others treat or react to our mistakes.  I will argue that it is not…

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shantibrien

“They is starting law school next week:” Gender-neutral pronouns are awkward at first but worth it.

My Law and Public Policy class begins next week.  But before we jump into reading cases and writing briefs we will introduce ourselves and share our preferred pronouns.  I prefer “she/her/hers.” Every year I have two or three students who prefer “they/them/theirs.”  At first I thought this was a ridiculous waste of everyone’s time. We have legislative processes to learn!  Executive orders to scrutinize! But, I’ve come to appreciate the practice. It reminds me to be mindful of people unlike me and I hope it signals to the students that our class values inclusion. In 2015, the press was already…

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braposa

The Twelve Year Old Girl Lawyer

Has anyone noticed that when people want to call someone young, the standard age they refer to is twelve? I've noticed. I've noticed mainly because people always tell me I look twelve.  I remember my first day ever going to court. I spent two hours just deciding what to wear to make myself look older. Some suits were too baggy and some heels were too high, but I eventually found an outfit that made me think, "okay, I think I can pass for at least twenty-one today." Well, I was wrong.  I had a contentious custody hearing at the probate…

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