Hello Class of 2022! My name is Olivia Veldkamp, and I am an incoming 2L at the Peter A. Allard School of Law. We are so excited for you to join us, and hope you are excited to arrive! This school year is going to be filled with challenges, successes, support, new friends, new knowledge (like what on earth a tort is), and more.
You and every one of your classmates are arriving with a different perspective, experience, and set of skills and talents. Rather than comparing yourself to others, enjoy and appreciate these differences! How amazing is it to meet people who are passionate about improving access to justice in the Downtown Eastside, next to people who can’t wait to give legal advice to tech start-ups, next to people who want to have in-depth discussions on the impact of the Charter, next to people who are impatient to do their first moot on their road to becoming a Crown prosecutor — the list goes on!
Because everyone is so different, it is important to stay in your own lane. Just because you see someone else joining all the available clubs does not mean you need to do the same. At the same time, if you want to be involved in many extra-curriculars, don’t let fear of not having enough time hold you back! If you see someone studying at 9:00PM, that does not mean you have to be studying then, too — but on the flip side, seeing someone who appears to never open a textbook isn’t a license to do the same yourself 😉 You made it through undergrad (and potentially a graduate degree as well), so you know what you need – trust yourself!
Although you may have been told otherwise, I promise you will have time to do things other than study, whether that is with Allard extra-curriculars or other activities you have going on outside law school. Law students aren’t robots — we like to eat good food, play sports, go to the beach, read non-textbooks, practice music, and play videogames just as much as the next person. Make time for these things and don’t feel guilty doing so.
Enjoy the rest of your summer, and get excited for 1L! You have a lot of amazing experiences and people waiting for you in September.