Who is the Perfect Yale Law Student?

February 15, 2012 - 12 AM

D.S., 3L

Yale is a unique law school. And while I truly believe that anyone could be happy at Yale, there is a type of person out of whom YLS really brings out the best. He or she may not necessarily achieve the best grades or end up with a Supreme Court clerkship, but he/she will really enjoy three years in New Haven and get the most out of the education. For this person, there can really be no choice quite as right as YLS. This YLS student is:

  • Passionate: There are SO many things at YLS to dedicate yourself to, you’re missing out if you don’t find a passion to pursue (hey look – that rhymes!). Perhaps it’s helping your clinic clients or perhaps it’s working on cutting edge scholarship. Both of these things you can’t do until 2L year other places – at YLS you do it as a 1L, because we only have one semester of required classes. That’s one more year to really get into your passion! And those are just two very broad categories of the many ways you can find a passion.
  • Social: I know, when you think law student, you think quiet and reclusive. Well, the social bird, who is willing to introduce him/herself to students, professors and professionals who share their passion (see above) gets the worm. And the worm in this case is really tasty – its working with the best minds in the field on really exciting projects. It’s getting to help write a book that’s going to be a bestseller. It’s working on a case that’s going to end up at the Supreme Court. That’s good worm.
  • Self-starter: Big law schools are like the Wal-Marts of the world. They have everything, and it is well organized so it is easy to find. YLS is like the ol’ country store. Supplies are limited, the quality is unmatched, but sometimes you just have to make it yourself. I can list a ton of amazing things that started at YLS because a student had a passion (again, see above), realized there was no way to fulfill it yet, and started their own with great support from the administration. For just one example, check out the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project, founded by recent YLS grad Becca Heller.
  • Optimist: There are going to be moments of frustration and anger. YLS is a tiny school, not every class is going to be taught every semester, or even every year. You might not be able to get into that awesome class with that all-star professor. If you can’t bear the thought of graduating without having taken class abc or professor xyz, you might have some down moments at YLS. If instead, you can look at it as an opportunity to take another amazing class with another amazing professor in a field you may not have even considered otherwise but will soon be falling in love with, well come on over to New Haven – you’ll be very happy here.