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StudentLife

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  1. Best way to de-stress (or not get stressed in the first place) is to stay away from the law building and bubble as much as possible. Toxic. Mental Health and Wellness Committee is the most useless thing ever and another waste of money. Adult Colouring is their major activity, LOL. How about offer more practitioner electives and stop curving so harshly causing people to fail. Just switch to pass/fail like med does and most stress is gone since no more GPA worries.
  2. You should always opt out of as many SU fees as you can that are optional. SU is dead weight and does nothing except waste money. Same with the university admin.
  3. You can opt out of the health/dental plans, and the optional SU fees. Opting out of the SU fees is only possible during the first month of each semester and is done online. https://www.su.ualberta.ca/about/budgetsfees/optouts/
  4. They started getting bad 2 years ago. Everything is getting compressed to smaller time windows so profs can have more free play time.
  5. Seattle for sure if you can afford it. Location, location, location.
  6. Yeah it's consistently shitty. Look at Dentons, numbers of associates and articling students right now compared to 3 years ago. Massive drop. Sure some small firms hire an extra person or two but those are crim/family firms and they'll pay like 30-40k for articling and forget about good benefits. Salary bump? The salaries are low and not going up because firms know there is way more supply than demand. 3 years ago there were about 175 or less U of A students graduating every year, now there are 190+ AND at least 20+ NCAs on top of that. Meanwhile commercial office vacancies are all time high. And more and more law students coming from out east looking for jobs. As for government, also reduced hiring only to get worse when UCP wins in the spring and slashes spending. Pay wise, freezes and cuts across the board and into the future. Ontario government froze hiring altogether completely when conservatives won. Edmonton is a small market to begin with. But between January 2017 and August 2018 for articling 2018-2019 there were something like at most max 10 (or less) postings in Edmonton and area (Edmonton only more like 5). Others found things informally or by cold calling I suppose. The articling placement rate right now is something like 85%, not counting NCAs and people no longer looking which is an additional 30+ people. Even for last year the rate never went above 95%. The Dean claims 99% or something but we all know that was total BS. Probably why he's getting the boot. And if you want to work for a fancy larger firm you have to move because the big players are in Calgary, Vancouver, and Toronto. I dunno about you, but if you have to beg, know someone, or cold call strangers just to find a posting or interview, then the market is not good.
  7. #0. TLDR. Edmonton is a shithole, especially in the winter (8/12 months). And in the summer it's too hot, dry, mosquito infested, and boring. 1. Dean, there's a new one coming, but the old one didn't do much except try to raise tuition by 50% over a summer and then get shut down by the NDP. The one thing he did do was hire a lot of research heavy profs in areas like ocean/whale law and aboriginal/colonial/feminist theory. New tenure track profs who then teach a bunch of overly theoretical and academic courses in those prof specific research areas while eliminating more useful practical practitioner courses. The new profs are also on the young side and purely academic in esoteric subjects (aka whale law and international ocean conservation law in Edmonton). 2. The building is old and small with no real seating areas (minus the nice faculty "professional development" area that is within the faculty office space, years ago taken from the library, that students can't access). But you can always just go to HUB, Business building atrium or somewhere else via pedways. Can't recommend spending any more time in the law building than you absolutely have to. 3. See point #0. Correctomondo. First summer in Edmonton might seem kind of neat like small town like, but after that it's just same old same old. Breaking news usually involves road construction updates, lost cat, or downtown water main break that shut down transit. Or a murder. 4. I think this is accurate. There was the classic drunken law gurl "DLG" (officially titled "Desperate Drunk Girl Finds Self at Hal-LAW-ween" and ironically more fact than fiction) satire article in the law student paper that resulted in some students ratting on and telling on the writer publicly and directly to the local news media and making a huge deal out of it. I mean DLG was funny and rang true for some, but no one ever mentioned the even more outrageous "I’m Out of Ideas – Law School Just Isn’t Funny Anymore" article. That one was a true epic Animal House classic that got no coverage at all even though the very first line literally read "Normally, I like to do this type of thing in a church with my pants unbuttoned...and, like magic, out would pop some satirical take on this wonderful rollercoaster that we’re all on called law school." Several paragraphs later, the article ended with "The new Macbook I don’t need that I’m buying with daddy’s credit card? Tim Cook should be on his knees sucking my balls right now. I guess things aren’t so bad. The world is stuck with me like I’m stuck with herp…I mean, cold sores." Anyway, back to the famous article, then it became national news after the author was complained about by fellow students directly to the media by name. Initially they used a public social media and the law official course blog to do this and get credit for it too. Easy A. Later it turned into a media circus with actual interviews and national coverage. Then soon after that there was overemphasis on all the feminist speaker events. There was probably a few other things but those are the only ones that come to mind recently. Before that probably party alcohol student lounge use issues and ski trip drunken debauchery stuff. 5. The course selection is far superior to anything Calgary could muster, but it certainly falls short of what U of A had several years ago. And the new courses will probably only get worse given the new timetabling rules as well as the new profs who will be teaching in their research specific esoteric subjects. 6. Job market in Edmonton sucks and will only get worse compared to what it was in the glory days. 7. NCAs (foreign trained lawyers or grads) are ever present in the same courses in 1L and upper years, like 20-30 a year and they also compete for articling spots. 8. Almost all the social events put on by LSA are alcohol focused and last year were at something called "Beercade". Basically a low class crowded grindy country bar packed with 18 year old college students. 9. LSA has good CANs but anyone can access them for free on the LSA website without having to go to U of A. Not much exclusivity there and most are several years old of varying quality. 10. The vast majority of grads don't stay in Edmonton so unless you're going to Calgary, Vancouver, or Toronto you will probably never see your successful go-getter classmates ever again. 11. My high school wasn't cliquey, but U of A was very cliquey. There's the LSA crowd, A List Dean's list research assistant crowd, LRW Fellows group, Alberta Law Review peeps, law show crowd, Calgary hockey jock group, rugby group, party drinking bar crowd, SLS peeps, older married second career/retired dudes group, exchange students, older NCAs, socially awkward clique, and Asian leadership club (they made an actual club and they're almost all Asian and female but focus on "diversity" guest speakers). There's a lot of cliques or small groups and they don't mix much after 1L. 12. Law House. It's like Animal House, but in reality an undergrad infested tragic drama. Unless you find constant problems with facilities and maintenance humorous, while being grossly overcharged by residence services. 13. Library SNAIL infestation. I don't really have much to say beyond that. I can say that I'm glad the law school nightmare is finally over now. And winter too. Best was convocation (the degree parchment looked lame) and one-way ticket outta Deadmonton. Byeeeee!
  8. Stay in BC. Edmonton is in northern Alberta which means it’s isolated, with scorching hot summers, bone chilling winters, and not much to do beyound the few summer months (a few repetitive tired summer festivals every year). And you better like country stuff and big trucks. The roads also suck due to the freeze thaw cycles and you have to drive almost everywhere. Construction is terrible due to road repairs and roads within the city are circa 1950s/60s and poorly designed. Vancouver on the other hand is one of the most cosmopolitan cities to live as far as food, amenities, environment, climate, and entertainment in the world. World class city for sure. Very diverse population. Only downside is that real estate is expensive but then it’s still cheaper than Toronto or New York outside the main city core area. I wouldn’t even bother comparing schools because the location is more important. But if you must compare schools, UBC is superior to U of C or U of A. And location wise there is no comparison. I’m just going to say this is in a vulgar but true manner. Compared to Vancouver, the lifestyle in Edmonton is like living in a shithole. Unless you’re married and have 3 kids and just bought a house. Maybe not as much while in school but you might be stuck after you move due to the job market. You’ll also feel like in a small town where everyone already knows or is friends (and/or relatives) with everyone else so forget about meeting “new people”. Cost wise, money won’t matter when you’re outside waiting for the bus/LRT at -40 C (with wind chill) in the dark and realize that the next bus/LRT is delayed for another 20-30 min. And then you will be freezing and late to wherever you’re going. If you’re a girl and single, Edmonton is good though since lots of guys come to Edmonton for work like trades and more so blue collar stuff. Lots of guys with tattoos, beards, and big trucks around town. And country guys. Not to mention the 4 large penitentiaries/jails surrounding Edmonton. If you’re into bad boys, it’s a great dating scene. Plenty of Fish aspiring serial killer and filmmaker Mark Twitchell: from Edmonton born and raised. Tried and sentenced. Great lively "Arts" scene. The Art Galley is very small and extremely underwhelming. The only large regular museum has still to actually open. The tiny Edmonton Zoo made the international news numerous times due to animal welfare issues (Where is Lucy?). We also house the criminally insane by the picturesque river valley in the middle of the city who sometimes escape from the Alberta Hospital. There are industrial air pollution issues from the refineries and chemical plants all around Edmonton so that’s also something to consider. You only hear about it when sometimes workers have to go to the hospital due to hydrogen sulfide exposures since those are reportable incidents. But you can smell the sulfur or other chemical smells lots of times when windy. And I don’t mean smog; I mean the type of emissions that gives northern Alberta and Edmonton refinery row area the highest rates of asthma in the country. The air is also very dry all the time; especially in the winter. Your skin will get wrecked. Very high UV values when sunny. Add the reflective snow 8 months of the year and it's even worse. The people who cheer Edmonton are generally people who lived in Edmonton most of their lives, and/or have all their family and friends in Edmonton. Most everyone else already left town after university ha ha. 1 or 2 full years in Edmonton and you will have seen, experienced, and done everything that there is to do. Downtown Edmonton on a weekday after 6 PM is basically homeless panhandling Gotham city. And on weekends you just see the 18-19 year old college party kids lining up outside a few sketchy country bars. Most of which get shut down after several months and rebranded due to gang violence and shootings. Used to be murder capital of Canada a few years ago but it’s trying to get the top spot again. If you feel trapped in Vancouver sounds like you are spoiled and not doing anything to put yourself out there to proactively seek out new activities and/or people. At least you can go for a hike on the west coast in the winter months in the rainforest or by the beach. When people say they enjoy "walks on the beach" in Edmonton on Tinder profiles they mean Alberta Beach. I''ll let you Google that one. GO TO THE CITY/PROVINCE WHERE YOU WANT TO LIVE FOR THE NEXT 5 or more YEARS. That’s how you should decide. Vancouver>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Calgary>>>Edmonton Toronto is too expensive, including tuition, and the job market sucks there. Same with New York.
  9. BigRigButters, being critical doesn’t mean what I said was factually incorrect. … “For future readers: do your due diligence and check this person's post history. Proceed with caution taking this person's word as gospel. he/she/zhe/whatever has an axe to grind with U of A Law.” … Did you really have to block quote everything though just to say that? How do you feel about the new exam schedule this year admin has so wisely planned out for the 1Ls? The exam period was compressed (arguably so profs can get more vacation time) so that 1Ls now have all 5 final exams 5 days in a row: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Monday, and Tuesday. Do you think that was a good idea for wellness? I mean I don’t think ‘adult colouring’ and ‘puzzles’ in the library will help with a schedule like that, you know what I mean. And no fall term break still, when literally the rest of the university gets a week off. BigRigButters, if you wish to discuss things further I certainly have more things to say, especially about the Dean’s leadership achievements (he’s working hard for that approximately $365, 000 + $37, 000 in benefits a year in 2017), but I was hoping you would mention what a great job they are doing for the students first. I find it odd that all of a sudden, an ‘articling student’ decides to post a very long admissions website FAQ like post at 4PM on a Tuesday. I mean I probably wouldn’t be checking U of A applicant thread at 3 PM on a Tuesday at work, or writing a super long and very well edited post like that if I was very busy articling. I felt like I was reading something from a faculty prospectus ghostwriter. I do not have an axe to grind. I was saying it how it is right now. Ask me anything. I will answer it. Sorry, it’s just how it is. But sure, take the literal word of 2017grad who has that brochure like post as the ONLY (1) post ever in this whole forum. By the way, Trusts was cancelled. FYI, but I already said that before. There’s no one to teach it apparently. I will write a long ranty detailed post later addressing the many factual inaccuracies of your post 2017grad. Later because wanted to see if anyone else had anything else to say before then.
  10. Iau, you should go to whichever school is in the city where you want to work. If you want to work in Calgary, U of C is the best choice. U of C gives students an advantage in Calgary. Calgary as a city is the best choice over Edmonton as a city, school aside. There is no real comparison there. 1L and upper years are completely different. Most of my comments were about upper years.
  11. Sorry, I should have clarified a few things. Personally, I put about $10 k in BTC in late 2017 (from government student loans not LOC), which is already worth substantially more than the initially invested cash amount. My time frame is 1 year for 3-5x gains, and 2-3 years for 5x-50x gains. There is no way to predict what will happen but I think BTC in 2018 will be in the price discovery phase with a fixed supply response and exponentially increasing demand from both institutions and retail investors. Think of it as both the new digital gold and global currency that everyone will soon want a piece of. It will be much higher from 2017 pricing levels in 2018/2019, but hard to say exactly by how much. Some analysts say it could be 500k to 1 million by 2021; however, 100k in 2 years’ time seems like a likely number based on various analytical projections. If the forum likes, I could post back in 1 year’s time and 2 years’ time and let you all know how it turned out! Disclaimer: Everything I have said, including the above, should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice.
  12. Maybe use 20k to buy some Bitcoin BTC and cash out in 1-2 years time frame at 5-10x returns. 3x is probably a conservative return in 1 year's time from current valuations. The other cash, down-payment for a house makes sense paying off as much of the mortgage as possible. Please don't do anything involving stocks though, stock markets are in a bubble right now and will correct or crash sooner or later.
  13. All I know is the Dean said he doesn't want to stray away from the core academic traditional curriculum and doesn't want anything related to articling to be shifted to or integrated at U of A law school in terms of courses, training or curriculum. SLS or legal aid clinics could be set up for credit as part of the curriculum but that was opposed as well for liability reasons I guess. Some schools like UBC I think have clinic participation for credit. Basically, he wants to protect the status quo and focus on core academic tenure profs who do research and that type of core traditional academic curriculum. U of C is very similar to TRU from my understanding. And U of C is not that different from U of A, just smaller and newer. UVic I heard has nice co-op terms available. Lakehead, Bora Laskin Faculty of Law has Practice Placements or some sort of curriculum that meets articling requirements. This sounds interesting though, at least for ease of licencing purposes: “The Bora Laskin Faculty of Law’s Integrated Practice Curriculum includes a third year placement with a supervising lawyer in lieu of articling, the latter of which is the industry’s long-standing apprenticeship model.” “The only difficulties I understand graduates are having in finding employment is in the bigger firms in particularly Toronto -- or maybe exclusively in Toronto – that are having some difficulty with the condition that has been enforced since the institutionalization of the law school: that our students at Lakehead University law school receive their experiential training and practical training as part of the curriculum,” he said.” https://www.tbnewswatch.com/local-news/local-law-grads-articling-for-dream-job-despite-non-requirement-406879 https://www.lakeheadu.ca/academics/departments/law/practice_placements
  14. The gold standard is a CAN/Summary from someone who took the class before or had the same textbook. http://lawstudentsassociation.ca/cans/first-year/ UVic, Osgoode and other schools have similar databases. 1L curriculum is very similar across schools. Never read a textbook in 1L, or since, so couldn't really tell you about Hogg or Irwin. But have some As since.
  15. Wow this thread made a come back. Exam time or something? If you're working grades don't matter after graduation or articling. For alternative careers no one looks at law school grades period. You just need to graduate. If you go to U of A, D+ average in any year and you would be required to withdraw. Happens every year to several people. If you're lucky maybe they will let you repeat a year (for 1L) or semester (in upper years) at U of A.
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