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I have heard from many people that Allard can be a very competitive and cut throat school, with a not great student culture. Can a current or former student comment on this? 

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Based on what I heard from my upper year friends and some users on this forum, I went into 1L with the expectation that Allard would be quite collegial.  However, whether it's because of covid, not being able to see your small group in person, or some other reason, this year doesn't feel collegial at all.  People only talk to their friend group or, if they don't have one, get left out.  Any collegiality outside of cliques seems surface-level and disingenuous, and the spreadsheet situation only made it worse. 

Edited by meandtheboys
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As a counter to that, I would say the 1L class at large has steadfastly denounced the ones who did that. I don’t know who it is, but it seems as if the bulk of the class has weighed in on it at this point, and the consensus seems to be that this was unacceptable. I for one have found everyone at Allard to be friendly and courteous, and haven’t witnessed or heard about any cutthroat behaviour save for this recent scandal. Are there some jerks in the class? Probably. But you show me a group of 200 people that doesn’t have a few jerks in it. In my experience so far Allard students are a pretty standard cross-section of the populace at large. A bunch of decent, well-meaning folks, occasionally having their reputation tainted by some outliers. I would not worry about a poor student environment when making my decision on whether to attend Allard or not. 

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1 minute ago, meandtheboys said:

Based on what I heard from my upper year friends and some users on this forum, I went into 1L with the expectation that Allard would be quite collegial.  However, whether it's because of covid, not being able to see your small group in person, or some other reason, this year doesn't feel collegial at all.  People only talk to their friend group or, if they don't have one, get left out.  Any collegiality outside of cliques seems surface-level and disingenuous, and the spreadsheet situation only made it worse. 

I would say that any broad sense of ‘togetherness’ or school wide collegiality has been hindered (or maybe outright ruined), but I would still say that the people I interact with (pretty much only in my small group) are all perfectly fine. I believe we’re in different groups, and our experiences have probably differed quite a bit, however. I’m also not in van/in person, so I might have a facile view of the situation. 

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I'm a 3L. I've made more and better friends in law school than in other setting I've ever found myself in (and I went to law school as a mature student so I had exposure to more settings than most beforehand). My small group was fantastic, we had a great dynamic, in my experience there was never any shortage of people willing to share notes or CANs, record lectures, etc, for each other. People were switched on and hard working and that's where the competition came from given grading on a curve, but I wasn't privy to anything underhanded among my peer group (and on the contrary as I said people were happy to help each other out).

I'm saddened to see that others have not had this experience. But not entirely surprised. The 2L group had the pass/fail debate fiasco that was really heated and unpleasant, and now of course there's the 1L spreadsheet situation. I feel very happy and fortunate that I was able to complete 1L in-person and in a world that had never heard of COVID.

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In normal times, you develop special bonds by going through the meat grinder that is 1L with the same people for an entire year. You go out for drinks after class, commiserate about the 100-page reading that you understood three words of, and share a nice dinner downtown while stressing about the (meaningless) 1L moot. 

No one has that this year, and that's made things difficult for everyone. Once COVID's taken care of, I'm sure you'll find no shortage of collegiality in a cohort of friendly, diverse and intelligent people. 

Edited by Tagger
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2 hours ago, CleanHands said:

The 2L group had the pass/fail debate fiasco that was really heated and unpleasant

Lol can someone fill us in on what this was all about (if it's not too touchy of a subject)?

I'm a current undergrad at UBC, and the prospect of unlimited Cr/D/F grading being applied for us in this recent term was somewhat unpopular in some circles because a handful of students were concerned that such a policy would lead to rampant grade inflation and inflated admissions averages for professional schools among other issues. The students who were against Cr/D/F were then accused of being "elitist premeds" or whatever and it was overall a pretty cringe situation lmao

Edited by DonaldTrump

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I found UBC really collegial and social. I have a lot of friends from across different years and a lot of my closest friends are from law school. My small group was extremely supportive and everyone definitely went out of their way to help others when stuff happened in their personal life or if they needed notes because they had to miss a class. The upper years were extremely supportive and volunteered a lot of time to help us during recruit as well. 

To echo @Tagger, I do think COVID is making things really difficult right now. We had a ton of social events, so obviously that's how most people make friends. I can't really imagine making friends over Zoom. 

Edited by Starling
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I agree with CleanHands, Tagger and Starling. No doubt the current 1L climate is primarily attributable to remote schooling.

I did perceive some low-key competition, especially during OCIs. There is a rumor that some people, either my year or the year above, kept a spreadsheet of who got jobs where. It was not for an explicitly malicious purpose per se, but apparently it was used to determine who was "worth their time." Again, just a rumor.

As to the April 2020 exams issue, there was a movement, primarily driven by the then 1Ls, to push for mandatory Cr/D/F on the basis that people were disproportionately affected by COVID and remote examination. Those who opposed had various reasons, like employability, clerkships and so on. It got heated then died down as people got their grades back and found out they did better than expected 🤷‍♀️

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3 hours ago, Psychometronic said:

As to the April 2020 exams issue, there was a movement, primarily driven by the then 1Ls, to push for mandatory Cr/D/F on the basis that people were disproportionately affected by COVID and remote examination. Those who opposed had various reasons, like employability, clerkships and so on. It got heated then died down as people got their grades back and found out they did better than expected 🤷‍♀️

To add since I was a 1L at the time, there were also concerns about academic dishonesty with exams being online and rumours spread about people planning to collaborate (+ fears of what that would do to the curve), but I think everyone likely realized how big of a time crunch exams are to begin with and I personally have no clue how collaboration would help (just study, people!! It does wonders!! Also boggles my mind how people who are supposed to be entering a profession like law would even consider cheating, but that's a discussion for another time).

I think the general discussions/debates over the issue were fine and both sides had very valid points of view. For the most part people were respectful. However, some individuals chose to resort to personal attacks/insults (publicly) in response to opposing points of view which is what  made it a really uncomfortable situation (and reflected super poorly on the students). 

Again, another reflection of 1Ls not being their most ethical, professional selves. I think Allard made the right call to do optional Cr/D/F, but I'm curious to know how that has impacted recruitment for students who opted in.

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4 hours ago, Psychometronic said:

 

some people, either my year or the year above, kept a spreadsheet of who got jobs where. It was not for an explicitly malicious purpose per se, but apparently it was used to determine who was "worth their time." Again, just a rumor.

 

OMG barf. If true, please, law gods, never let me work with these people, regardless of where I end up 😳.

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11 hours ago, thebadwife said:

To add since I was a 1L at the time, there were also concerns about academic dishonesty with exams being online and rumours spread about people planning to collaborate (+ fears of what that would do to the curve), but I think everyone likely realized how big of a time crunch exams are to begin with and I personally have no clue how collaboration would help (just study, people!! It does wonders!! Also boggles my mind how people who are supposed to be entering a profession like law would even consider cheating, but that's a discussion for another time).

I think the general discussions/debates over the issue were fine and both sides had very valid points of view. For the most part people were respectful. However, some individuals chose to resort to personal attacks/insults (publicly) in response to opposing points of view which is what  made it a really uncomfortable situation (and reflected super poorly on the students). 

Again, another reflection of 1Ls not being their most ethical, professional selves. I think Allard made the right call to do optional Cr/D/F, but I'm curious to know how that has impacted recruitment for students who opted in.

I have the feeling that because of the optional Cr/D/F, the cut-off for OCI grade is higher this year for 2L OCI because people can make their 1L grade "better" by using the optional Cr/D/F, and eventually - only favoring those who did very well, hurting the majority/borderline applicant (B~ B+ range applicants) 

Anecdotally, you need at least 72/73 to get some OCI and 74-75.99 should get you a decent number of OCI for previous years.

This year, I knew multiple applicants who have  74/75 average and got 0 OCI invitation which is quite unusual. 

Edited by criseaster55

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3 hours ago, criseaster55 said:

I have the feeling that because of the optional Cr/D/F, the cut-off for OCI grade is higher this year for 2L OCI because people can make their 1L grade "better" by using the optional Cr/D/F, and eventually - only favoring those who did very well, hurting the majority/borderline applicant (B~ B+ range applicants) 

Anecdotally, you need at least 72/73 to get some OCI and 74-75.99 should get you a decent number of OCI for previous years.

This year, I knew multiple applicants who have  74/75 average and got 0 OCI invitation which is quite unusual. 

Having witnessed this issue last year during April exams, I was curious as to how it would play out for OCIs. Sorry to hear that this year was extra tough.

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Posted (edited)

A new email from CSO:

  • "With Vancouver in-firm interviews behind us, the CSO would like to congratulate all students who elected to participate in the process, regardless of the outcome. We will be sharing more reflections and information on what’s next for all 2L students via Monday’s CSO Weekly.
  • In the meantime: It has come to the CSO’s attention that a group of students has created and is circulating a spreadsheet of 2021 2L Summer Student hires. While this may satisfy some people’s curiosity as to where people landed, it violates your classmates’ privacy to circulate this information without their express consent. Even where you have such consent, the creation of this kind of list compounds what can be for many students a stressful and emotional experience. Nothing helpful comes out of a speculative student-generated hiring grid. We ask all students to delete any such lists, stop compiling them, and disable access to them by others, in consideration of your classmates. You are, of course, welcome to share your own news about summer employment with your friends and family."

I think it's time to discuss the possibility that our school contains a not-insignificant population of assholes.

Edited by OldPBeswick
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4 minutes ago, OldPBeswick said:

A new email from CSO:

  • "With Vancouver in-firm interviews behind us, the CSO would like to congratulate all students who elected to participate in the process, regardless of the outcome. We will be sharing more reflections and information on what’s next for all 2L students via Monday’s CSO Weekly.
  • In the meantime: It has come to the CSO’s attention that a group of students has created and is circulating a spreadsheet of 2021 2L Summer Student hires. While this may satisfy some people’s curiosity as to where people landed, it violates your classmates’ privacy to circulate this information without their express consent. Even where you have such consent, the creation of this kind of list compounds what can be for many students a stressful and emotional experience. Nothing helpful comes out of a speculative student-generated hiring grid. We ask all students to delete any such lists, stop compiling them, and disable access to them by others, in consideration of your classmates. You are, of course, welcome to share your own news about summer employment with your friends and family."

I think it's time to discuss the possibility that our school contains a not-insignificant population of assholes.

Good lord, more of this nonsense?

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1 hour ago, CleanHands said:

It has come to the CSO’s attention that a group of students has created and is circulating a spreadsheet of 2021 2L Summer Student hires

What is with these people and spreadsheets?!

As an incoming 0L, I hope our year isn't like this

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Years really do vary. I was part of the Asshole year. Ended up chilling with the lower Awesome year.
 

...and to be a total hypocrite - Experiences will be different for each but please, never worry about how Everyone will be. Everyone doesn’t exist as an entity - as with all other parts of life, these are actually individuals. 
 

It’ll be ok. That’s the takeaway. 

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12 minutes ago, Hegdis said:

Years really do vary. I was part of the Asshole year. Ended up chilling with the lower Awesome year.

Informative. I really thought that it was just zoom school driving everyone nuts.

I feel like I lucked out being part of the class of 2021. There were zero high profile toxic school culture incidents in my class (either that or I'm just blissfully ignorant) whereas there seems to be a new one every month for the current lower years.

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