Transitioning from college to LAW SCHOOL
I am what “they” call a “forever student.” As an actor, you’re taught that “you can always learn” and to “keep your eyes open so that you can learn.” In other words, I enjoy school and thusly, enjoy being a student.
With that said, the transition from college to LAW SCHOOL was daunting if not extreme.
I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree in Acting. I went to The University of the Arts, a conservatory-based university in Philadelphia. Moreover, my core curriculum was based in acting, voice, and movement techniques as well as practicum courses like audition techniques and networking skills. Aside from the six required liberal arts courses, the most “academically demanding” course I had was Theatre History. That’s not to say I wasn’t challenged in other ways. Naturally acting is an extremely competitive craft with grave challenges when it comes to making it a career. Needless to say, my resume, listing professional credits on London, U.K., New York City, and Philadelphia stages, indicates that I worked hard and gained technique while at UARTS. BUT HOW WAS MY UNDERGRADUATE EDUCATION GOING TO AID ME IN LAW SCHOOL. Sure, I read a lot and sure, I’ve been trained to be a fast and accurate memorizer, but I was mostly reading plays and when you react to your scene partner, at least for a talented and trained actor, the lines come naturally.
“HOW WAS I GOING TO MANAGE LAW SCHOOL?” Pray, I guess.
…here’s what happened.
1. I signed up for CULS’s Academic Success Program (ASP). The beneficial
program teaches the skills needed to excel in law school. Moreover, during the school year, the ASP offers guidance with outlines, tough concepts in classes, and helpful exam taking tips.
2. I worked hard to follow the instructions and study techniques of ASP
and my professors. CULS has an “open door policy,” so when I was struggling with a particular concept of the class or had a question about the material, I formed well-organized relevant questions and made an appointment with them. The Faculty has been prevalent in my success thus far.
3. I did the work. In other words, I accurately managed my time. This
was something I found particularly different from college. I was lucky to be cast in at least one of the school productions every semester, so it was necessary for me to learn time management in order to manage my rehearsal schedule and my class schedule. However, law school is a whole other “ball game” [My Legal Research and Writing professor hates sports references, but I couldn’t come up with a better analogy.] The hours that you “put in” do not end. That sounds really scary and sometimes it is. When those moments happen, immediately call your support system! More importantly, take a break when the work becomes “too overwhelming.” It is okay and possible to have “quality of life” while in law school.
Remind yourself how much you want to be a lawyer. Remind yourself why you need to be a lawyer. Remind yourself that in life “nothing worthwhile is easy.”