kerriannstout

You’ll Pay For This: The First Step Is Admitting You Have a Problem

I owe $226,020.79 in federal student loan debt for my legal education. Let’s start at the very beginning. I was extremely fortunate to have my undergraduate education paid for through a mix of scholarships and parental-aid. When I graduated with my shiny new B.A in Modern Languages and Cultures (yeah, I know), I had no clue what I wanted to do, and I had no concept of how different my life would be with student loans breathing down my back. In my infinite 21 year old wisdom, I decided “I don’t know what I want to do, so I will…

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kerriannstout

Finding the Line: A Crash Course in Law School Boundaries

Reflecting on my law school years always fills me with a solid mixture of nostalgia and terror. I am one of those weirdos who really loved law school, but that “ish” was hard, particularly the first year. Everything was brand new, and I, like many others, went through a lot of personal growth. This required redefining and resetting my own boundaries with the people who were in my life before law school as well as learning to navigate new boundaries with my law school peers, professors, and administrators. This was a challenging balancing act, which I handled more gracefully at…

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kerriannstout

The Career Advice That Changed My Life

Do the work even when you’re scared. Like many lawyers, I was born prewired with a deep fear of failure. I spent a large portion of my life letting fear drive my decision making and avoiding pursuing the things that scared me. If I was unable to see a clear path to success on something, I found every excuse not to do it. In law school, this manifested in my “missing the deadline”  to write-on to law review, applying for “safe” internships, and skipping important networking events because I was “too busy.” I was also in blissful denial of exactly…

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kerriannstout

Ms. JD Interviews Lawyer- Turned Professor and Health and Wellness Coach

Danielle Kocal is the Director of Academic Success at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University, runs a thriving health and wellness business, and is a real-life superhero mom to two young girls. However, this is not what Professor Kocal thought her career and life would look like today when she applied to law school in 2003. Back then, she was on a mission to become an environmental lawyer. But, life did what life does, and while in law school, Professor Kocal realized her true passion: teaching. It’s lucky for her students that she had this realization! Since…

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