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On 7/30/2020 at 6:08 PM, lawstud1111 said:

That sounds so exciting I actually can't wait to get involved

yeah, i will caution though, as a previous poster did, that you might not get all or any of what you want/expect. the clinic spots (which again, from what i’ve heard through the grapevine, largely won’t be available to 1Ls this year?) were pretty limited and/or competitive. some things (e.g. some of the PBSC placements) just suck and you don’t figure it out until after you’ve committed. some people strike out and don’t get anything at all — absolutely not reflective of them as a law student, it’s just the luck of the draw. 

i think a lot of folks (read: me) got stressed about ECs in september because it’s the first few weeks and you’re just really eager to jump in and do cool law school things. so i want to emphasize that you reeeaaally shouldn’t feel bad or anxious if you get dealt a bad hand. it’s not important. you have a whole three years, with opportunities popping up at several points throughout those years. 

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7 hours ago, garlicbread said:

yeah, i will caution though, as a previous poster did, that you might not get all or any of what you want/expect. the clinic spots (which again, from what i’ve heard through the grapevine, largely won’t be available to 1Ls this year?) were pretty limited and/or competitive. some things (e.g. some of the PBSC placements) just suck and you don’t figure it out until after you’ve committed. some people strike out and don’t get anything at all — absolutely not reflective of them as a law student, it’s just the luck of the draw. 

i think a lot of folks (read: me) got stressed about ECs in september because it’s the first few weeks and you’re just really eager to jump in and do cool law school things. so i want to emphasize that you reeeaaally shouldn’t feel bad or anxious if you get dealt a bad hand. it’s not important. you have a whole three years, with opportunities popping up at several points throughout those years. 

Seconding this. Some of the placements sound SO COOL and then when you begin them you realize they’re less hands on than you hoped and some don’t have too much guidance. I did not like my clinic then had to spend 2 hours a week there anyway. I think it’s worth talking to upper years that have done clinics you’re applying for if they were available in past years. After orientation the admins of the 2023 group will open it up to upper years and you’ll be able to join the upper year groups as well so you could post to see if anyone has done it.

Even if you don’t find something you like or don’t get the ECs you like, a lot of things also pop up over the course of the year that people who are swamped with ECs already don’t have the capacity for. It’s gonna be okay.

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Reviving this thread:

What is 1L like right now? Are you overwhelmed with work? Are you motivated to do your academic work?

I'm in my 4th year UG and I'm struggling to stay motivated and do my schoolwork. My inability to focus has gotten so much worse. 

I'm really wondering if its even worth going to law school during this pandemic. I can't even imagine the difficulty of law school in these circumstances. Please tell me how it's going.

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1 hour ago, CarletonChonkers said:

Reviving this thread:

What is 1L like right now? Are you overwhelmed with work? Are you motivated to do your academic work?

it just feels like 1L minus the social aspect. I don't feel like any of my profs have changed the amount of work they're assigning just bc were online. 

we are all motivated to do our readings and assignments because we're still in law school and we will still be receiving grades that will still matter to future employers. 

it sucks not being around people and doing classes on zoom, but everyone's more or less made peace with it. 

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I don’t find it too bad. I definitely wouldn’t defer because of the pandemic, since there’s no telling how long it’ll last. Sometimes I get a headache from too much screen time, but that’s my only big complaint. Otherwise, like @mistertubby said, we’re all motivated to do our work, and the assignment/exam structure is much the same as it has been previous years.

I’m really grateful I got a month in-person to meet my classmates, it made the move online much less harsh. Without it, I think this year would have been much more difficult.

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21 minutes ago, CarletonChonkers said:

Thanks for the answer.

Do you feel that you are missing out at all?

For sure. But don’t we all? I don’t think that feeling is exclusive to law students. It’s just a shitty time to have to live through. On a positive note, the lack of social stuff going on makes it very easy to focus on my studies. 

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34 minutes ago, albertabean said:

For sure. But don’t we all? I don’t think that feeling is exclusive to law students. It’s just a shitty time to have to live through. On a positive note, the lack of social stuff going on makes it very easy to focus on my studies. 

What is the culture like at U of T law? Someone earlier mentioned it's very heavy on the "corporate" focus with many people aiming for Bay street, etc. Do you feel a lot of "competitiveness" in your class? Has that made making connections uncomfortable or difficult for you at all? Oh yeah and do you think it's worth applying with a 3.75cgpa and 164 lsat?

Edited by IvanSinclair

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1 hour ago, albertabean said:

For sure. But don’t we all? I don’t think that feeling is exclusive to law students. It’s just a shitty time to have to live through. On a positive note, the lack of social stuff going on makes it very easy to focus on my studies. 

Thank you for the answer. 
 

I know the following question is extremely subjective but I would still appreciate an answer.

 Do you think the extra money for U of T is still worth it despite what is going on?

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47 minutes ago, IvanSinclair said:

What is the culture like at U of T law? Someone earlier mentioned it's very heavy on the "corporate" focus with many people aiming for Bay street, etc. Do you feel a lot of "competitiveness" in your class? Has that made making connections uncomfortable or difficult for you at all? Oh yeah and do you think it's worth applying with a 3.75cgpa and 164 lsat?

No sense of competitiveness from my view. Everyone is really nice and helpful. There is certainly a focus on Bay St. in general, but there are many people that are interested in going into public interest/social justice work, too. I think it's definitely worth throwing in your application, but it's hard to guess what your chances of admission are. 

Edited by masterofnut
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Just now, masterofnut said:

No sense of competitiveness from my view. Everyone is really nice and helpful. There is certainly a focus on Bay St. in general, but there are many people that are interested in going into public interest/social justice work, too. I think it's definitely worth throwing in your application, but it's hard to guess what your chances of admission are. Probably pretty decent.

Thank you!

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6 hours ago, CarletonChonkers said:

What is 1L like right now? Are you overwhelmed with work? Are you motivated to do your academic work?

I'm quite enjoying it, though if anything feel like I don't have enough time in the day to truly process the information I'm shoveling into my brain. The work load isn't overwhelming, but it is significant and in general higher than the work load I was used to carrying during my undergraduate, so the last few months have been ones of adjustment. As other posters have stated, I do not feel as if my motivation is suffering. I view this as a once in a lifetime opportunity, and while online studies may frequently feel isolating, I still feel a consistent internal push to put forward my best efforts. 

Edited by LabouriousCorvid
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15 hours ago, CarletonChonkers said:

 Do you think the extra money for U of T is still worth it despite what is going on?

 

Tuition is out of control, there is no doubt about that. It's hard for me to say whether it is worth the extra money since I have nothing to compare it to. What I will say is that I feel reasonably confident about my job prospects after graduation, if I can secure middle-of-the-road grades. Is that worth 35K? I don't know! 

I really struggled with the decision to choose a school, but now that it's started, I'm glad I'm here. Whether or not you want to pay the cost of tuition is definitely something worth asking yourself, and the answer will be very personal. I would think long and hard about it, and actually do the calculations of living expenses + tuition so that at bare minimum you know what you're getting yourself into. 

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Did any of you receive financial aid and, if so, how accurate was the calculator that's on the website? 

Also, how did you choose U of T? Was it more "fit" or for a specific legal interest? I don't mean to be presumptuous and think I'll get into both U of T and Oz, but I'm trying to sort out what my first choice would be if I did. Based on what I've read it seems more "sensible" to have Oz as my first choice as I'm interested in criminal law, but I went to U of T for undergrad and it is such a great institution. Are there many people in your first year class interested in criminal law, and is there enough support at U of T for that? To add on, I'm also not 100% committed to criminal law. Do people's areas of interest often change when they actually go to law school, or do they tend to stick with what they wanted initially? 

I don't want to make the mistake of going to Oz only for their clinics/programs and then discovering that I don't really like criminal law, and wishing I had chosen U of T instead (although I'm sure Oz has a great academic experience too). As well, I'm of the impression that you could get into criminal law (or any type of law, really) from any school, which inclines me more towards U of T.

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Comparing 1L to my 2L year happening right now, the academic component seems the same. The social part is obviously not great cause there's no longer CTTB or seeing people in the halls. I'm definitely suffering from zoom fatigue and just exhaustion from being in the same space constantly and so as a result I'm finding 2L worse than 1L. The 1Ls are definitely starting law school on hard mode. 

I think some of the competition of 1L only really emerges when second semester starts and people start getting grades and applying to jobs, trying out for moots, etc. 

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19 hours ago, lawboratory said:

Did any of you receive financial aid and, if so, how accurate was the calculator that's on the website? 

Also, how did you choose U of T? Was it more "fit" or for a specific legal interest? I don't mean to be presumptuous and think I'll get into both U of T and Oz, but I'm trying to sort out what my first choice would be if I did. Based on what I've read it seems more "sensible" to have Oz as my first choice as I'm interested in criminal law, but I went to U of T for undergrad and it is such a great institution. Are there many people in your first year class interested in criminal law, and is there enough support at U of T for that? To add on, I'm also not 100% committed to criminal law. Do people's areas of interest often change when they actually go to law school, or do they tend to stick with what they wanted initially? 

I don't want to make the mistake of going to Oz only for their clinics/programs and then discovering that I don't really like criminal law, and wishing I had chosen U of T instead (although I'm sure Oz has a great academic experience too). As well, I'm of the impression that you could get into criminal law (or any type of law, really) from any school, which inclines me more towards U of T.

I think my advice (which should be taken with a grain of salt anyways) would depend on whether you're interested in defence or prosecution. From what I understand, UofT does pretty well with MAG hiring if you want to be a prosecutor, but it's hard to make good money in criminal defence, especially when you're just starting out - in that case, I'd recommend taking on minimal debt. With that being said, you're correct in saying that you can get into criminal law from any school, and UofT does have great faculty (e.g., Kent Roach) and opportunities (e.g., Criminal Appellate Externship, DLS) for those with a criminal law focus. 

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20 hours ago, lawboratory said:

Do people's areas of interest often change when they actually go to law school, or do they tend to stick with what they wanted initially? 

In my experience yes, sometimes students don't get exposed to a big variety of practice areas in 1Ls, because the 1L curriculum is quite theory heavy, and there are limited opportunities available to 1Ls in terms of substantial exposure to a variety of practice areas in the real world.  People's minds can absolutely change as they get exposed to and learn more about things they didn't know before, particularly first generation law students. I also find that a lot of times it's not so much "changing" so much as it is "finetuning" and "zeroing in", from a more general area to a more specific area (e.g. you start in 1L wanting to do civil litigation but you don't realize until you're in 2L that you are specifically interested in practicing employment law as a litigator).

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Is there a minimum/maximum number of courses/credits that you must take per semester? In how many years can you graduate (say, can you do it in 4 years instead of 3)?

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1 minute ago, dtor3 said:

Is there a minimum/maximum number of courses/credits that you must take per semester? In how many years can you graduate (say, can you do it in 4 years instead of 3)?

Your schedule is set for you in 1L, and in upper years there are some required courses and a credit number you need to graduate on time. This means that you have a somewhat set course load each semester.

You cannot slow down your degree with the exception of extremely rare circumstances (injury, disability, intense care obligations, etc.). You are expected to complete your degree within 3 years, unless you are doing a joint program (getting a Master's or Phd at the same time). 

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15 minutes ago, albertabean said:

Your schedule is set for you in 1L, and in upper years there are some required courses and a credit number you need to graduate on time. This means that you have a somewhat set course load each semester.

You cannot slow down your degree with the exception of extremely rare circumstances (injury, disability, intense care obligations, etc.). You are expected to complete your degree within 3 years, unless you are doing a joint program (getting a Master's or Phd at the same time). 

Does the 1L schedule consist of 4 or 5 courses per semester?

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