The first semester actually went by in a flash. There were three things that I had to get used to and I think this would come in handy for future batches coming into SUSS School of Law.
- Always remember that you’re a student
You are no longer the boss you may be at your workplace. As this is an adult learning environment, you may be of the same age or even older than some of your tutors. The tutors are there because of their ability to teach and their ability to understand and impart skills and knowledge that will allow you to become a lawyer. No one in a meritorious environment was ever bestowed into a position because of age. Basic respect is always required. Remember how you treated your lecturers and teachers when you were in your schooling years. I am personally turning back the clock to when I was a junior college student or when I was doing my first degree. It really helps to have a humble attitude with an eagerness to learn.
- Legal research is a steep learning curve
I had major problems trying to navigate Lawnet. Searching for cases is really not easy for someone like me with zero legal background. I could not find the cases I wanted to find initially. I believe it was the 4th lesson during boot camp that we were introduced to Lawnet and then were tasked to do a graded assignment using the legal research skills that we were taught just moments ago. That incident also gave me a perspective into how I could handle my subordinates at my workplace better as well. Not everyone can pick things up in an instant. I sucked at it initially and I would like to think that have improved leaps and bounds by doing tons of searches since that very fateful day.
- Time management
I seriously do not know how I am handling law school. I wake up at 7 to exercise, handle my work during the day which typically ends at about 7 pm on weekdays, rush home for dinner with my family, spend some time playing with my daughter before her bedtime and squeeze in an hour or two worth of readings every night before bed. If I have evening classes then it replaces my evening schedule. Over weekends I spend a day with my family and dedicate the other day to doing my readings and assignments. I think it’s useful to divide your day into blocks so you know when to start and when to stop for every single activity. I have some useful time hacks like listening to lectures while walking from one destination to another or while exercising but that is perhaps for another blog post.
I think you really have to enjoy learning about the law. After a while, it kind of grows on you. I would say that this course is extremely interesting. I just attended my first lesson for LAW205: Introduction to Forensics where we had field police officers as our lecturers. We learned about securing a crime scene and digital data forensics.
My other module for the first half of this semester is LAW303: Law of Business Organisations. What I’ve been doing for the past few days was trying to decipher when it would be an abuse of the court process to bring an action under section 216 of the Companies Act instead of section 216A. The best part is that I actually found it interesting and enjoyable.
If you love it, you will look forward to it. The question is, will you love it. I guess you will only know when you are immersed in the course itself. As of this juncture, this is a really fun course to be doing.
I don’t actually see myself trying to get the perfect assignment but I find more joy in the little eureka moments I get when a concept is understood.
Perhaps Albert Einstien best articulates what I’m going through when he said,
“Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of a lifelong attempt to acquire it”