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ewok

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  1. As someone who completed a MA in Crim/Policy and is now in law school, my suggestion is to just go to law school. After graduating law school you will come out with the opportunity to be a lawyer, and if not, you can really do whatever you want. A JD opens just as many doors as a MA (if not more). If your goal is to be a civil servant or work for the feds, then just go to grad school. My buddy is currently finishing his MPA and loves working for the feds. Like a poster above said: A JD will not close off government/policy jobs to you, but a MPA/MP closes the door to being a lawyer. If you really have the drive, you can try a combined program like suggested above. But make sure you have the drive and focus to do another 4 year program.
  2. I am going to edit this post and pose a question. For those of you who said "first choice" in the past and then things got quiet, what ended up happening?
  3. I can only speak for myself in saying that the administration has been fine for me. I really can't speak to an overall trend, I have never heard anyone complain about the administration in class or anything like that. But then again I am sure someone has had a negative experience with them though and can tell you differently, there is 300 of us so it's bound to happen.
  4. I agree, I think it could be a full 3 credit course. My point isn't that Legal Research should be cast off, it's really important, but more so it is so spread out it and it didn't need to be. Just take out ADR in the fall, replace it with legal research, and get legal research done with in one term instead of having it so spread out. Then, spread property instead because it felt so crammed.
  5. I took torts. I chose my small group based on the fact I didn't know what the word "torts" even meant, so figured I would maybe need a bit more of an intimate look at the topic than other courses haha.
  6. I would say you would be hard pressed to find a job at a firm as an undergrad. Many firms don't even like to hire law students for those kinds of jobs. Honestly, don't worry about your employment history when it comes to law school applications. I worked landscaping all through undergrad, never stepped foot in a law firm before getting into law school. Admissions don't necessarily care that you bunged around in a firm for your summers. Some may even be more interested to see that you had a unique or strenuous job in a completely unrelated field.
  7. Hello, I thought I would give my honest review of my 1L experience at uOttawa. Hopefully this helps some of you. Some Good: 1. The quality of professors (at least for me) has been solid. Even the professors I have not particularly liked have been extremely well-versed in the subject they were teaching, and were always engaging lecturers. They found ways to make subject matter I hate be relatable and interesting. Every professor I have had has been approachable (even the scary ones). I feel like professors really respect their students, and are very aware of the stressful periods of 1L (aka the nightmare that was late November). There have been multiple times where I had a "shit this sucks, I don't want to be here anymore" attitude, only to have a professor give some solid morale boost in class to build me back up. I am sure others feel the same. 2. The student body is very collegial. It is hard to not compare yourself with your classmates at times and stress about marks. But with that said, I have never had a classmate actively root against another or try to do any type of competitive bullshit. It's very much been a "if you see someone down, you pick them back up" kind of atmosphere. My biggest fear of law school was the competitiveness, but really, the only person you are competing against is yourself when you think that way. 3. Pub grub and beer. There are so many places within a 2 minute walk of Fauteux that if your day really sucked, or you just want to have a couple drinks with friends, they're right there. Many a "quick beer" turned into a 4-hour chill sesh. 4. The small group set-up. I had a very good experience in my small group and felt that it was a way to get a better look at a topic I knew nothing about. My small group topic was something I had no knowledge of whatsoever, and without it, would probably have struggled. But the small group format meant we spent a lot of time on tedious cases that would have confused the hell out of me had I been in a lecture of 80 people. 5. For as much as people shit on the administration, they have always been very good with any issue that has come up in my experience so far. So I may be the first to say this but the administration never messed any of my stuff up, always facilitated my needs and responded to my questions and emails in a timely manner. 6. There are always information sessions and guest lectures being held. Some are helpful, some aren't, but I like how much is always going on in the law building. There is always something going down if you pay attention, lots to check out. 7. Scraps of food and coffee are everywhere. If you choose uOttawa, you will learn to scavenge in Fauteux like the rest of us raccoons. You will probably never want to eat a wrap again after first year. 8. Upper-year peer mentors have been really helpful. They've shown us the ropes. I didn't know what the hell a case brief was, a summary, a short summary, a long summary, a framework etc., it was all gibberish and I was completely lost. But our peer mentor gave us the down low on every damn thing, hooked us up with a tonne of helpful strategies and tips, and eased the learning curve. I should add as well the students who run my tutorials have been pretty solid, so thank you to them as well. 9. I think we get a fall reading week next year (?). I can't remember if that's a real thing or if I just dreamed it. Some Bad: 1. The building sucks. Genuinely every building I have gone into on campus blows FTX out of the water. The bathrooms are few and far between, most notably in the library. Women get the short end of the stick on this one for sure. I think there is one nice classroom in the whole building - I forget the number at the moment but the third floor one with pink and purple seats. It's like they just decided to update that one classroom, then said "okay good enough lol" and forgot the rest of the building. The others have these horrible plastic chairs that just make your get gnarly swamp ass. The fourth floor of the library is nice, but it fills up rather quick. The fifth floor might as well be purgatory, and of course there are no bathrooms on the fifth floor. The library's computer lab is good though, it's usually pretty empty. 2. The building is overcrowded. They're trying to fit too many people in it. At peak times in first semester it was really noticeable. The mix is also weird. You got 25 year old common law students mixed in a building with 18 and 19 year olds. Just separate the two programs. 3. More hate on the building: those damn double doors when you enter. Just seriously flatten FTX or give us one of those fancy new buildings down the road. If you have mobility issues, I could see FTX being a major headache. On the first floor alone you have to get in a tiny elevator JUST to get to the main elevator, and you would still need to go through a fire escape door if you wanted access to the 5th floor of the library. 3. Legal Research, Alternative Dispute Resolution and Property. These first two courses aren't stressful, but they seem to add stress onto first semester for no reason. ADR was pretty meh, I don't understand why any of it was needed in the first semester as you take it for 3 weeks in January and learn all the same stuff. Same with Legal Research - that easily could have been a single semester course. Why they make property the single semester course out of these three makes little sense to me. Property was dense, and felt more applicable in future practice than both LR and ADR. In property I felt like I was duct-taped to the roof of a car ripping down the highway passing important signs like "oh shit what did that one say?" haha. 4. January term. I cannot stress how pointless I think January term is. It is 3 weeks of slacking off, then everyone banging out an assignment the night before so we can all go home or go on vacation. Christmas and New Years is done, and then BAM you're back in Fauteux thinking "what the hell, I was just eating turkey wasn't I?" Then you get this garbage reading week at the end of January term, that isn't even a reading week and is only 3 weeks after winter break. You can't get ahead on assignments. No one wants to read because they just crammed 1 week of ADR work into a single night. Some people actually get stuck in cold ass Ottawa when they could've spent an extra week back home or wherever, and now have to buy a plane or train ticket to go home again. That just sucks. When you come back from that week you don't feel rested, and you face a shortened semester with a bunch crammed in. 5. Alluded to above - the shortened winter semester feels very rushed with some prof's trying to cram a tonne in, and then some prof's just phoning it in later in the term. 6. The winter. This has nothing to do with the school at all. I love winter. I love the snow, I love skating outside, I love that feeling where the wind hits you just right and suffocates you for a good 5 seconds. I love all that shit. But I. Fucking. Hate. Ottawa. Winters. The weather here is the worst. It throws everything at you, freezing rain, snow dumps, -40 wind chill. This is all bundled together with shit sidewalks that are never cleared. It's March and it's still miserable! Anyways, there are some thoughts. As with any place, some good, some bad. All what you make it. Sorry if there are any mistakes, mainly wrote this post because I am procrastinating on catching up on readings and don't feel like starting a paper.
  8. This is all the information I need.
  9. It is just all decorum, the court needs to look as professional as possible to maintain respect for the institution itself. There are certain judges who will get upset if the water jugs don't match haha. Same reason you're only supposed to wear black shoes in superior court, just all about tradition and respect (even if we don't think it is disrespectful).
  10. Hey saw this topic thought I'd comment since it's interesting. I work as a reporter, CSO and clerk in a smaller, rural county. The big thing with us is just to hide it, we often have counsel hide their coffee under their tables and pretend to look for files and take a swig lol. In terms of water bottles just pour it into the glass. We always make sure your pitchers are full anyways. If discreet, I would never call someone out unless they're chewing gum or some nonsense like that. Plus we work with the same lawyers all the time so we don't want to be dicks to people we have good working relationships with. Edit: I just spilt my water mid trial yesterday and the judge laughed at me, so it happens to all of us.
  11. You have all summer, get the powerscore books and 7sage and go to town. I don't think anyone does well on those first couple of practice tests, especially because you are not properly adjusted to the timing either. It took me a solid two months of work just to start hitting in the low 150's.
  12. I got mine from TD, did not need a cosigner.
  13. Hi Adrienne, I did the powerscore and 7sage to begin with, but found I did better once I caved and hired a tutor. Obviously the last option is pretty expensive, but if you can afford it maybe the one-on-one will help. In terms of studying, I think it is different for everyone. From September until I wrote my LSAT in December I studied pretty much from the moment I woke up until I went to bed. If you are prone to burn out I wouldn't suggest this method haha, but it is the window I had. I also did poorly on my LSAT the day of, but I went from PT'ing 140 to consistent ~161's within three months. Just as an aside, don't get too down on yourself. After I saw my LSAT score I got pretty bummed because I figured I was not going to get in, but where there is a will there is a way. A girl from my school got into Queen's with a 155!
  14. Have you taken time off of school yet? My suggestion is if you are not ready, maybe take a year off, do some work and travel if you can. Travelling helped me clear my mind, as cliche as that sounds.
  15. I would say do your MA if you don't get in, at the end of the day it is a free degree if it is fully funded. Like Lawgik16, I recently finished my MA and also felt pretty burnt out. I took this last year off, wrote the LSAT + applied to law school, but I don't think I could have gone straight from grad school to law school without the break. Again similar to Lawgik16, out of 11 people, 3 of us from our cohort are going to law school.
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