UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

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BroilersNotStewers
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by BroilersNotStewers » Fri Apr 20, 2018 11:51 am

BroilersNotStewers wrote:
Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:24 pm
What are everyone's thoughts on doing journal? I know it's been discussed on the old site but wondering if you guys have anything to add. Also, on doing journals besides LR (my winter grades are making that seem unlikely). Planning on litigation and wanted to clerk but not sure if I'll have the grades.
Anyone?

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beep
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by beep » Fri Apr 20, 2018 2:00 pm

Glib answer? Journal sucks, don't do it

More serious answer:

I think journal makes sense for two kinds of people:
- People who are pushing to clerk and pick up gold stars and work in prestigious parts of the profession
- People who are very excited about the academic aspect and want to be involved even if it means doing the grunt work of journal production (of which there is a lot)

I thought I was both of these people and I turned out not to be - but did not realize this until late - so I hated my time on journal. Normal journal member work at Chicago is infrequent but blitzingly busy when you are on; board work is less of a blitz but more steadily busy (depending on what position you get - some are just worse in both directions). Both took time that I now would have rather used a) having fun in the last two years of my pre-biglaw life, and b) studying so my grades didn't fall in 2L/3L, which is becoming more limiting to me and outweighing whatever marginal benefit I got from journal membership. I found the majority of other members of the journal insufferable and tried my best to avoid them. The only redeeming aspect for me was working on and publishing my note, which itself was almost torpedoed by an insane comments editor. I absolutely would not do journal again if I had the chance to take a mulligan on law school, and I'd encourage people to think pretty strongly about whether a) journal will add anything to their career path, or b) whether they are the kind of person who would earnestly enjoy journal work, which is a lot less glamorous and intellectually stimulating than you think it might be.

I'll caveat that my experience was with law review, and my friends who did other journals don't seem to have had as rough of a go. It also may have been the influence of the board the year above mine, and the EIC my year, and a better group of leaders may mean a better journal experience.

The other minor thing that sucks about journal at Chicago is like - I have the maroonbook drilled into my skull at this point. No one uses the maroonbook except Chicago journals, and iirc maybe just law review. During my first year at my firm I made a bunch of citation errors just because I didn't realize I resolved some obscure rule in the maroonbook way instead of the Bluebook way. It's mostly fixed now, and probably if you clerk that's less of a big deal as you'll get reacquainted with Bluebook during that year or two, but that was just like an extra kick in the ass after I thought all of the pain from journal was over.

necho2
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by necho2 » Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:41 pm

I really do wish that this whole thread wasn't just me and Beep taking turns dispensing advice- but if that's what we've got, let's do this...

I did not do journal, and it's been pretty great and has given me plenty of time to do other stuff that I've enjoyed. I also have checked off plenty of boxes that people tend to associate w/ LR status (fancy firm, clerking, etc.) and haven't really noticed it holding me back at all.

Also I second Beep's point about grades (which I'm sorry about dude, that has to be very frustrating in hindsight), I have actually gotten substantially better grades during 2L and while obviously some of that could be subject matter interest/corp kids just checking the hell out (thank you!), I imagine some of it is that without upping my effort I'm competing with a field of bright, gunner-ish people who are somewhat handicapped by their journal obligations, that can apparently just fall from the sky?

Didn't we talk in the clerkship thread? If you're considering competitive district courts I'm not positive that skipping journal and instead killing 2L (to the extent you can actually follow-through on that) wouldn't be a better decision. But maybe just do the writing comp (which I hear will be a bit lower-effort this year), and if you do make it, cut back on other extracurriculars so your grades don't slip? It's difficult to know whether LR really impacts clerking chances b/c it's so correlated to great grades, but we definitely put more people into clerkships than participate in journal (especially when you consider that some members wind up doing transactional stuff afterwards...)

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archipm
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by archipm » Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:01 pm

I am not on journal so did not feel compelled to answer but I will say that I have several friends who are doing journal/did journal before they graduated last year and not one of them has ever had anything positive to say about journal. Some of them abjectly hate it and regret doing it, others are neutral but periodically have a ton of work to do for it. Every employer that has asked me why I am not on a journal has reacted positively to my answer that I wanted to spend more time on clinical work and pro bono.

muggle
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by muggle » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 am

I did journal and liked it a lot. I think it taught me to be a better writer and connected me with a lot of very smart and even interesting people who I wouldn't have gotten to know well otherwise. I bet there's something of a feedback loop with interesting people opting out of journal and leaving only insufferable gunners left, which for some reason didn't happen my year, so if there's any way you can defeat that collective action problem… But it could also be Stockholm syndrome. Maybe we all suck.

I think journal is a good idea for people who are internally motivated to enjoy it for whatever reason (like ideas, like legal academia, like detail-oriented BS). If you want to drink the kool-aid for a minute, this is basically the only time in your life when you can be directly involved in the picking and shaping of ideas in the academic side of our field. I think it made my relationships with professor mentors stronger and made me more conversant in the basic principles and ideas of our field, which was helpful to someone who didn't come from a legal/fancy background. Contrary to beep's experience, I found the maroonbook unpainful and think it's actually pretty helpful (for clerking at least). It's not the specific citation system so much as learning to look for the right things that could go wrong that has been helpful.

Maybe journal is also a good idea for people who are trying to grab every prestigious gold star. For these people, especially with the clerkship plan in place, I think it's a little crazy to skip journal and just "plan" to get good grades. But I also don't think it's a very good idea to be this kind of person. There are always going to be tradeoffs, and it's hard to enjoy something when you're only doing it for some kind of hoped for later benefit.

Beep is right that the hard part is that you don't really know in advance whether you're as interested in legal writing as you think or whether material benefits are likely. But if you do do journal, there are other things you can do to make your life better--talk people you think are cool or interesting into doing the writing competition, start thinking now/at your summer job about topics to write your Comment about, don't overload your course schedule or your breaks. I think the (weak) link between journal and dropping grades is more related to burnout and the correlation between journal and taking a lot of journal-y classes than to journal work in a vacuum.

Teacher
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Teacher » Sat Apr 21, 2018 12:35 pm

Can anyone comment on university-owned grad student housing? I was pleasantly shocked to learn that some of the buildings/ units are pet friendly.

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archipm
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by archipm » Sat Apr 21, 2018 2:40 pm

Teacher wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 12:35 pm
Can anyone comment on university-owned grad student housing? I was pleasantly shocked to learn that some of the buildings/ units are pet friendly.
A good friend of mine lived in grad housing last year and liked it a lot. She had a big studio with a full separate kitchen for $750/month including pet rent. Only thing to note is the lease terms because you can only sublet to another grad student so if you plan to leave for the summer that’s something to think about, not sure if they do 9-month leases

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beep
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by beep » Sat Apr 21, 2018 2:43 pm

Thanks muggle - glad to have an opposite perspective!
muggle wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 am
I think the (weak) link between journal and dropping grades is more related to burnout and the correlation between journal and taking a lot of journal-y classes than to journal work in a vacuum.
This sounds right to me based on my experience. It was part just having a lot less time and part getting totally burnt out on doing hard tasks related to law school. And having fed courts and stuff like that rather than eg a clinic or fluffier seminar didn't help (though 2/3 of my worst individual grades in law school were in seminars that I didn't think would be difficult going in). But I also caution people to avoid thinking that burnout won't happen to them - you really don't know until you're in the thick of it how draining or not journal will be for you.
muggle wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 am
this is basically the only time in your life when you can be directly involved in the picking and shaping of ideas in the academic side of our field.
I assume you were an articles or comments editor, or higher up? I did not feel like I got this experience at all on journal.

BroilersNotStewers
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by BroilersNotStewers » Sat Apr 21, 2018 2:59 pm

beep wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 2:43 pm
Thanks muggle - glad to have an opposite perspective!
muggle wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 am
I think the (weak) link between journal and dropping grades is more related to burnout and the correlation between journal and taking a lot of journal-y classes than to journal work in a vacuum.
This sounds right to me based on my experience. It was part just having a lot less time and part getting totally burnt out on doing hard tasks related to law school. And having fed courts and stuff like that rather than eg a clinic or fluffier seminar didn't help (though 2/3 of my worst individual grades in law school were in seminars that I didn't think would be difficult going in). But I also caution people to avoid thinking that burnout won't happen to them - you really don't know until you're in the thick of it how draining or not journal will be for you.
muggle wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 am
this is basically the only time in your life when you can be directly involved in the picking and shaping of ideas in the academic side of our field.
I assume you were an articles or comments editor, or higher up? I did not feel like I got this experience at all on journal.
Thanks for all the helpful advice, I'm definitely worried about burning out and regretting doing a journal. My only concern is that not doing journal will handicap me in the clerkship process.

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beep
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by beep » Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:02 pm

It very well may. If I recall correctly, you are sitting at good-but-not-K&E grades so far? Though I did not clerk, my understanding is that that would be the situation where having journal on the resume would add the most marginal benefit.

BroilersNotStewers
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by BroilersNotStewers » Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:07 pm

beep wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:02 pm
It very well may. If I recall correctly, you are sitting at good-but-not-K&E grades so far? Though I did not clerk, my understanding is that that would be the situation where having journal on the resume would add the most marginal benefit.
No, actually my grades dropped down to 178.5~ so unless a miracle happens for spring finals it wouldn't be LR.

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beep
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by beep » Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:13 pm

I mean write on is a thing. You also have, what, 40-50% of your 1L grades still outstanding unless they've changed the credits setup? Hardly a miracle required

BroilersNotStewers
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by BroilersNotStewers » Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:17 pm

beep wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:13 pm
I mean write on is a thing. You also have, what, 40-50% of your 1L grades still outstanding unless they've changed the credits setup? Hardly a miracle required
Yeah that was probably overstating things a little, I'm not saying it's impossible but I'd need to average close to a 181 to to meet the grade-on cutoff.

Teacher
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Teacher » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:09 pm

archipm wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 2:40 pm
Teacher wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 12:35 pm
Can anyone comment on university-owned grad student housing? I was pleasantly shocked to learn that some of the buildings/ units are pet friendly.
A good friend of mine lived in grad housing last year and liked it a lot. She had a big studio with a full separate kitchen for $750/month including pet rent. Only thing to note is the lease terms because you can only sublet to another grad student so if you plan to leave for the summer that’s something to think about, not sure if they do 9-month leases
Ok this is really helpful, thank you!

BroilersNotStewers
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by BroilersNotStewers » Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:33 am

"First, we will select twenty members based on first-year grades. However, eligibility to grade on to the Law Review is conditional on
performance in the Writing Competition. The threshold performance for grading on is defined as scoring in the top sixty submissions or the top 60 percent of submissions, whichever is more generous, though we will evaluate the next seven submissions below this threshold using a more standard-based approach. Second, another twenty members will be selected based on their Writing Competition scores. Finally, out of the next twenty applicants with the highest scores, five members will be selected based on all components of the applicant’s Writing Competition submission. We will select those five members by considering the twenty applicants’ writing components, editing components, and personal statements to determine which five will best contribute to the journal."

If I'm reading this right, it looks like LR is taking 45 people this year. Isn't that way way more than prior years?

necho2
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by necho2 » Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:24 pm

Yeah that definitely looks like more than it was last year (I think it's high 30s usually...), and it looks like at least part of it is they're trying to incorporate diversity into the selection process, which I know anecdotally has been a concern this year.

squid-pro-quo
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by squid-pro-quo » Fri Apr 27, 2018 5:53 pm

Two unrelated questions:

1. For those who did the writing competition, does it actually take the full two weeks, or -- if working uninterrupted -- how many full days of work does it take? I have no reference point, and the info sessions were pretty useless: "It's a lot, but it's manageable."

2. For 2Ls who split their summers between the public and private sectors, which do you do first? Like, do you typically work the first half at a firm and then the second half in PI, or the other way around? What's the protocol/expectation/norm (if any)? And is this something you need to mention to potential employers up front, or do you secure the offer first?

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Fox
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Fox » Sat Apr 28, 2018 2:50 pm

Does anyone know where I might be able to find a Crim Pro II outline? I've asked around, but I can't find one anywhere.

necho2
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by necho2 » Wed May 02, 2018 5:38 pm

squid-pro-quo wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 5:53 pm
Two unrelated questions:

1. For those who did the writing competition, does it actually take the full two weeks, or -- if working uninterrupted -- how many full days of work does it take? I have no reference point, and the info sessions were pretty useless: "It's a lot, but it's manageable."

2. For 2Ls who split their summers between the public and private sectors, which do you do first? Like, do you typically work the first half at a firm and then the second half in PI, or the other way around? What's the protocol/expectation/norm (if any)? And is this something you need to mention to potential employers up front, or do you secure the offer first?
1. I think people generally work something like 40 hrs total, friends doing SAs who implied they spent one weekend + couple hours most nights doing it. The people (usually judicial externs) who didn't even start their jobs during competitions appeared to be outliers, but not sure if that gave them a substantial advantage or not.

2. I think firms have been getting stricter about requiring 1st halfs or nothing, so presumably the PI places will be a bit more flexible and let you do 2nd half. I don't think you need to mention it up front unless you're planning on doing less than 8 weeks, which would be pretty unusually short.

LawSSS2
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by LawSSS2 » Thu May 03, 2018 6:49 pm

Does anyone know anything about the Patino fellowship? I want to apply, but I'm trying to gauge just how public-service orientated you have to be to get it. They say you don't have to be committed to future PI employment, but the essay wants you to demonstrate that commitment. I have a couple of PI internships on my resume, but I'm not PI orientated....so should I even bother?

Teacher
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Teacher » Mon May 14, 2018 12:49 am

Hey y’all! Quick question. Do you remember when you started receiving regular communication from U of C? Like info re: orientation, registration, the Kapnick Retreat, Ioan disbursement, etc? I’m just really excited and wish I were hearing from the school more regularly lol.

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archipm
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by archipm » Mon May 14, 2018 10:46 am

Teacher wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 12:49 am
Hey y’all! Quick question. Do you remember when you started receiving regular communication from U of C? Like info re: orientation, registration, the Kapnick Retreat, Ioan disbursement, etc? I’m just really excited and wish I were hearing from the school more regularly lol.
i don't remember exactly but looking back in my emails the oldest one I can find was from 9/1 and it said it was the fourth of four total "transitioning to the law school" letters they sent out over the summer so there were i guess earlier ones i deleted. we didn't get kapnick info until 9/13. they are weird and secretive about kapnick. this was 2 years ago so their timeline for communications might have changed but if my year and last year are any indication you won't know your class schedule until like a week before the term starts.

Cannonballer
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Cannonballer » Mon May 14, 2018 12:54 pm

Has anyone taken Election Law/any other course with Nicholas Stephanopoulos? He's visiting my school in the Fall and I'm wondering how he is in the classroom.

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usaorbust
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by usaorbust » Thu May 17, 2018 2:59 am

Kind of random, but how does spell checking work during exams? I am absolutely horrendous with spelling and wanted to make sure exam software had it and it worked well.

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Therm
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Re: UChicago Students and Grads Taking Questions and providing positive externalities

Post by Therm » Thu May 17, 2018 9:36 pm

I didn't do journal and haven't regretted it. I'm transactional, though.
usaorbust wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 2:59 am
Kind of random, but how does spell checking work during exams? I am absolutely horrendous with spelling and wanted to make sure exam software had it and it worked well.
It works, don't remember it working particularly poorly or anything.

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