Clerking at Rice Law: by Chelsea Conn

When people ask me how my finals went, I usually just tell them they were “OK.” I leave out the part where my neck and back ached from being hunched over a desk for 12 hours a day, my knees hurt because I hadn’t moved in weeks, my head ached from cramming so hard, and my jaw was sore from grinding my teeth due to stress. I even got a blister yesterday from wearing normal shoes because I had been wearing house slippers to school for weeks.

Everyone knows that law school is difficult. I find that law school itself is not as difficult as studying for finals. The hours poured into studying for just one test can be kind of ridiculous. Nothing feels better, however, than opening up an exam and being able to spot all the issues. For a law student, the most refreshing feeling in the world is leaving an exam thinking you have over-studied, and that the exam was really not all that bad.

I see this process repeated in the lives of attorneys. For example, yesterday was a hectic day at the office when both Larry and Nick had to go to court. Everyone in the office was making sure they had everything they needed. The clerks and legal assistants loaded boxes of documents into the courthouse. The amount of preparation that goes into trial or any appearance before a judge is astronomical, much like studying for a final exam.

Trial is every attorney’s final exam, and the judge is the professor- you will either pass or fail.

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