This past week has been orientation at Charlotte School of Law for the incoming 1Ls. As an incoming 1L, I stood in line to check-in to orientation on Monday with many emotions, including but not limited to: excitement, eagerness, apprehension, panic, curiosity, and delight – all mixed together.
One of my friends and I spoke about the irony of the fact that orientation just so happened to land on the same week as Discovery Channel’s widely-known “Shark Week.”
Although neither of us expected any literal sharks to appear at orientation, the stereotypical lawyer (and maybe even the stereotypical law school student) has been compared to a “shark” through jokes, cartoons, and various other media.
I wondered to myself how many “sharks” I would encounter this week.
On the first day, we were divided into our sections, where we finally got to see the people that we will be spending the majority of the school year with. During the first few polls that were taken of the group, one faculty member said, “Raise your hand if you want to practice [type of field] law.” She named various fields of law.
One thing that really impressed me about my section was that we had such a largely diverse group of students. There was not one category of the law that a clear majority was interested in, and at least one person raised his or her hand for each of the categories of law that had been brought up.
This is when it began to occur to me that my section consists of all very intelligent people, with different backgrounds, who all want to make a positive contribution to the world through the law profession in their own way.
I had pleasant interactions with my colleagues, and noticed that everyone else was, too. No one seemed vicious or cold-blooded, just as one would imagine a “shark” to be.
I have always admired the law for many reasons, including the variety of categories of the law and the fact that it is a man-made phenomenon, which promotes order and justice throughout the world (or at least tries its very best to).
During the week of orientation, I had come to admire many of my colleagues, too – the people who are very similar to myself in the sense that they want to know and practice law, but also very different in that each person has his or her own particular reason for pursuing this arduous path.
Throughout the week, I met many 1Ls, a few 2Ls, as well as members of the administration, faculty, and staff.
Although my perspective may change after the first couple months of classes, one thing was tremendously clear to me this week: Everyone really is looking after one another, and not simply out to get each other.
I am already proud to say that I am a member of such a great community.
~Alexandria Andresen, Charlotte School of Law 2015~