OFF THE RECORD - Seton Hall Law

Law Students Enjoy Dinner with the Dean

Posted by Kathleen Boozang on 1/28/19 2:44 PM

What a fun night I had last week with a One L study group from section A.  For those who don’t know, the first year class is always divided into sections that stay intact for the entire first year for every class – so essential that everyone gets along!  Most One L students join four or five others for a “study group” that helps each other with outlines, exam prep, and general morale.  So, this particular group is one of the nicest, most interesting, and eclectic group of people I have had dinner with in some time. 

One student is originally from Syria, though his father currently lives in Oman and his mother in Maryland – since the war in Syria he has become a libertarian – skeptical of government, seeking to protect his freedom from government interference.  And yet, he is open-minded enough to be close friends with his study partner who is a self-described socialist who majored in Economics at the University of Vermont and served as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer – we had a great conversation about whether Medicaid should pay for housing.  This section A study group is rounded out by a woman from South Carolina (who took her Syrian classmate home to experience his first US Thanksgiving) and a New Jersey native with a Master’s Degree in Political Science who works for his father’s construction company during summers.

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Topics: Student Life, Newark

You Can Make The Decision to Be a Successful Law Student

Posted by Brian Murray on 10/2/18 7:55 AM

Law school is one of the most demanding academic challenges that a student can face. Reading dozens of pages to prepare for class, learning a new way of critically thinking and carefully writing, searching for valuable work experience, and establishing relationships with fellow students and professors require lots of time and attention. When thinking about my own law school experience, as well as my experiences with students to date, there are a few key themes that seem crucial to success:

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Classes and Courses, Student Life

Five Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Law School

Posted by John J. Zefutie, Jr. on 9/24/18 8:04 AM

I loved law school.  I had great teachers, I made great friends, I was challenged daily with the material we learned in class, and (most importantly) I met my wife.  It was a glorious time.  And to all of the 1Ls, you’re in for the time of your life. 

To help you through your journey over the next three or four years, I’d like to share some tips and words of wisdom that I wish I had when I was I was a law student.

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Topics: Internships/Jobs, Advice and Tips, Student Life, Alumni

How Joining the Student Bar Association Changed My Law School Experience

Posted by Darran St. Ange on 9/13/18 2:05 PM

Every great law school fosters an environment where students are allowed to pick a side and argue their position. However, one thing that remains constant in the minds of every law student is that the rigor of law school can be a lot to balance. Whether it be juggling class readings, moot court, work, family, or other commitments, the load can often times feel insurmountable. 

So why would I suggest adding the SBA to the mix? The answer is simple.

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Student Life

Use Office Hours as a Bonus Learning Opportunity

Posted by Amy Newcombe on 8/31/18 11:15 AM

I encourage my law students to notice what successful law students do and to adopt these behaviors. Savvy learners realize that professors want you to succeed. Professors use a class syllabus and class policies to guide you toward success. Early on in each course, note the professor’s office hours and best contact method. Why? The professor is inviting you to engage with the material outside of class time—take advantage of this invitation.  

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Classes and Courses, Student Life, Faculty

A Professor's Guide to Law School Class Preparation and Participation

Posted by Solangel Maldonado on 8/18/18 7:30 AM

Imagine this scenario.  You read all of the assigned cases for Contracts, highlighted the parts that seem important in different colors, and even skimmed the notes and questions following the cases.  That means you are prepared to effectively participate in class, right?  Not quite. 

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Classes and Courses, Student Life

Leadership Fellows Put Vision Into Action

Posted by Stephanie Beach on 4/7/18 8:46 AM

Lawyers are leaders, whether in the courtroom, the boardroom, or on the political stage. But being an effective lawyer requires more than a mastery of legal terminology and knowledge of the intricacies of our justice system. It requires keen leadership, expert acumen, and strength of judgment. It requires the ability to fashion a vision for the bigger picture and, more importantly, the ability to create a desire in others to adopt that vision. And yet studies show that lawyers lack the critical leadership skills that are necessary for success, including stepping out of established comfort zones, embracing collaboration, and cultivating empathy.

The Leadership Fellows Program seeks to change that by providing law students with a unique opportunity to develop effective leadership skills.

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Topics: Classes and Courses, Student Life, Experiential Learning, Newark

What Does a Lawyer Look Like?

Posted by Hafsa Mansoor on 2/9/18 7:55 AM

I raise my hand a lot in class. The unwritten rule of law school is to avoid being called on at all costs— and here I am voluntarily subjecting myself to scrutiny— so it earns me a lot of strange looks. But it’s actually immensely important to me because it’s important to me to take up space— not physical space, but metaphorical space. I will be heard because I belong here.

I am conscious that women, especially women of color, aren’t expected to talk as much in professional settings. I am conscious when I look around me that there isn’t a single other person who looks like me in the classroom. I am conscious of the expectation that I— as a Brown, Muslim, hijabi, woman of color who is a child of immigrants and a first generation college student— don’t belong in the legal profession.

More than that, when I raise my hand, I am conscious that that expectation almost kept me from applying to law school in the first place.

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Topics: Student Life

Tips for Successfully Navigating a Difficult conversation

Posted by Deborah Edwards on 1/24/18 8:30 AM

Celebrating diversity in the legal profession and in our lives in general is something we should all strive to do. As a result of this endeavor, we will eventually find ourselves in a discussion about a sensitive subject that we may find uncomfortable. When that happens, try not to let the uncomfortableness sideline the discussion! Below are some strategies you can use to make a conversation about an important or difficult topic a little bit easier.

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Student Life

Resolutions for a New Year and a New Semester

Posted by Paula Franzese on 12/31/17 1:09 PM

The start of a new year and a new semester gives you a do-over – the opportunity for a fresh start. Here are five resolutions to consider for the year ahead:

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Topics: Advice and Tips, Student Life

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OFF THE RECORD

Seton Hall Law professors, students, administrators and alumni share advice and experiences about law school and life beyond the bar exam.

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