A “Thank You” to William & Mary Law School

satiraby John Satira, Class of 2017 

After periodically contributing to the Get Wythe It! blog during my first and second years of law school, I am happy to take some time post-graduation to reflect on my entire experience at William & Mary Law School. Where do I begin?

I suppose I can start with the fulfillment of my expectations. When choosing a law school back as a college senior back in 2014, I knew that I wanted to go to a law school that would get me to my ideal legal job. That was my number one priority. For me, that was doing large law firm work in Washington, D.C. With that outcome-focused goal in mind, I chose William & Mary Law School due to its record for placing students in the very type of job that I wanted.

My expectations were met, and then some. Not only will I be heading to the D.C. office to work for an international law firm after graduation, I will also first spend a year clerking for a federal judge in the D.C. area. Coming to law school, I did not even have clerking as a goal, or know much about it, but the resources at William & Mary Law School both informed me of the opportunities that come with clerkships and then helped me secure one.

But my time at William & Mary Law School is made up of much more than the outcomes, despite outcomes being my goal when coming to law school. I have always liked school, and I was very happy to find enjoyment in almost all of my classes. While some topics resonated with me more than others, each class helped me to pinpoint exactly what type of law I would like to practice. The same can be said for extracurricular activities. While I was more heavily involved in some groups than others, each of my involvements helped me improve the necessarily skills I needed to succeed in law school. Hopefully, those skills will continue to serve me well into the future.

While classes and extracurricular activities were aspects of law school I expected to enjoy, I was a little anxious to start law school and meet my classmates. But upon starting classes, I was pleasantly surprised at how kind and friendly my classmates were, and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with them, made up of attending classes, working diligently in study groups together outside of class, and participating in extracurricular activities. I have since learned that great classmates are the status quo at the law school, thanks to getting to know not only my own classmates, but students that came before me through connecting with alumni, and students that are coming after me through volunteering with the Admissions Office.

While I am excited to move on to the next stages in my life, I know I will look back fondly on my time at William & Mary Law School. Part of me thinks that I will miss the certain charms of Williamsburg the most. For example, where else in the world will you see off-duty colonial reenactors using modern day amenities like cell phones and cars? But I know that I will most definitely miss being in a challenging, but rewarding, educational environment with friendly, talented, and hard working classmates.

And I will forever be grateful to William & Mary Law School for molding me into a legal professional and sending me on my way into the world.

Read John’s contributions to Get Wythe It! here.

Watch the graduation slideshow here.

A Farewell to the 3Ls

zimmermanby Liesel Zimmerman, Class of 2018

Just a few days ago, the members of the Class of 2017 donned their robes and walked across the stage to accept their diplomas. Hundreds of family members and friends gathered with the graduates at the Martha Wren Briggs Amphitheater at Lake Matoaka while “Pomp and Circumstance” played in the background. After three years of relentless hard work, it was a time of reflection and celebration for the graduating class. For the 1Ls and 2Ls, however, it marked a more somber occasion, because we know that William & Mary Law School will not be the same without them.

The 2Ls first met this year’s graduates when they were working on cite checks and writing their notes in the Fall semester of 2016. They were our Legal Practice Fellows and our TAs, and they kindly showed us where to go when we didn’t know how to get to the Cottage. Since the 1Ls have been here, they have seen the 3Ls excel as leaders in student organizations. The 1Ls have listened to their advice on tackling the job search and taking interesting classes. They’ve seen the 3Ls’ succeed as editors and staff members on law journals, and they’ve been encouraged to take part as well.

Class2017-475x265 (002)Apart from our memories of them, surely the 3Ls have fond memories of their own. They remember bonding with their new classmates during Law Week while everyone tried to figure out how law school works. They felt the stress of their first cold call, and the reassuring pat on the back they got from their neighbor when it was over. Thoughts of their first-year Legal Practice Sections, and the life-long friendships that came from them. Laughs shared over cheese fries at Bar Review. Fun nights spent dressing up for Fall Formals and Barristers’ Balls. Hanging out with professors after winning their packages at Auction. In spite of the stress of law school, memories such as these must make the end of their legal education bittersweet.

To the graduating 3Ls and LLMs: your fellow law students are proud of you and all that you have accomplished in your time here. You have shown an amazing work ethic and have helped make our organizations, teams, journals, and community what they are today. We thank you for being role models to us and for showing us what it means to be Citizen Lawyers. Most importantly, we thank you for being wonderful classmates and friends. You have done incredible things at William & Mary, and we know you will continue to make our school proud. Congratulations to the Class of 2017!

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