By: Cody Grosshart
The spring semester is always a milestone for every class. If you are a 1L, then this is your second opportunity to slay the academic beast that is your first year. If you are a 2L, then this marks the true halfway point for your overall career. Finally, if you are a 3L, then I am surprised that you are even reading this piece, or reading anything at all for that matter. No matter what reason you have for being excited about this semester, I wanted to take this opportunity to provide you with some small nuggets of advice about how best to enjoy it.
This piece will be a break from our normally provided entertainment to offer strictly opinion. So, take what you read with a grain of salt. This advice is not guided towards having a better over all semester and does not focus on any particular aspect like making better grades (nerdz). With out any further ado please enjoy the following.
My first and most important piece of advice for the spring semester is to just go outside. Go for a walk or a bike ride. Eat lunch under the shade of a tree. Enjoy that cocktail on the patio of the bar. However you prefer just go outside. Fall semester dictates too much time indoors due the combination of poorer weather and charged belief that you’re “really going to buckle down this time.” We are already experiencing beautiful weather, and it does not show any sign of stopping. However, if you spend all semester indoors, you may find yourself exiting your last exam into the blistering sauna that is the Louisiana summer. So, don’t miss the good weather while it is here. Also, taking the time to enjoy the wonderful weather and sunshine can help the lower stress levels and boost your mood. Finally, believe it or not, you can actually study outside, too.
The second key to a good spring is to know when to start studying. Now, there is no set date that will work for everyone and/or every class, but some general guidelines may apply. If you are a 1L, then the chances are that you may still be riding the stress from fall finals. This is perfectly normal as the winter break is never long enough for anyone to actually unwind and relax. This carry-over stress can lead to the dangerous mistake of starting to study too early. Yeah, I said it, “too much studying.” I know that you are still seeking to prove your worth via your arbitrary grades, but too much work can burn you out before finals show up, and you could end up just spinning your wheels by the end of the semester.
If you are a 2L, then you should just study. At this point I am sure that many of you are already starting to loose steam. This is perfectly normal due to the fact of just how busy the 2L year can be. However, don’t give up so soon; the work will pay off in the end. I would suggest starting at the beginning of April to get your materials together, but again this is all up to your personal schedule. Who knows, maybe you are still even using the 4-3-2-1 scheduling method.
If you are a 3L, then . . . I have no idea. Personally, I’m jut wingin’ it. Good luck. [Don’t forget about studying for that Bar Exam thing.]
The last piece of advice I have to offer is to give NOT attending social events a try. Although the spring semester does not offer as many school-related social events as the fall, the events in the spring are no joke. Between Barrister’s Ball, Assault & Flattery, and St. Patrick’s Day you could loose your entire semester. Don’t get me wrong; these are great events and great part of the law school experience. However, you will soon be faced with a full summer of opportunities to socialize and have fun (sorry fellow 3Ls). So, my advice is to not push yourself to make every event and save some energy for cutting loose in the summer. Following this advice may even provide you more time to enjoy the sunshine and/or prepare for finals. Personally, I went to every event my 1L year and had a great time and skipped almost every event my 2L year and regret nothing.
Well, I think that is as far as my sage wisdom expands. I’ll go back to exaggerated true stories next issue, but for now go enjoy your spring semester. Oh, and before I forget, go outside.