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Solo In Chicago

...empowering the Second City's entrepreneurial legal community

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Have You Considered a Masters in Fine Arts??

I saw this little nugget from ABA yesterday:

This month, the American Bar Association Law Student Division will launch a mental health initiative with the goal of helping law students who are battling depression and anxiety.

"It's something that no one talks about," said Suvor, a third-year student at George Washington University School of Law and chairman of the 51,500-member group.

Part of the ABA Law Student Division's plan is to establish March 27 as the group's National Mental Health Day at law schools. The organization will provide schools with a mental health toolkit, which is an online source for student bar organizations and law deans to make available to students.

Included in the toolkit is "The Hidden Sources of Law School Stress," a pamphlet written by Lawrence Krieger, a clinical professor at Florida State University College of Law.

Hmmm...maybe a different career choice is in order?? I'm no psychiatrist but I'm not sure lawyerland is right for everyone when we read things like the above and the fact that the lawyer occupation generally has the highest reported depression rate of any occupation.

My observations...both in law school and in the practice of law, I observe waaaayyyy too many people who are letting this one aspect of their lives dominate their view of themselves and their self-worth.

Law school's a fishbowl; and nearly always a fairly small fishbowl. Personally I enjoyed the academic rigor of law school much the same as other aspects of my formal education. I think the law school error most people make is their life revolves only around law school. Perhaps during the 2-4 weeks of exams you do need to scale back and focus on school but for the rest of the year, law school should just be that 6-8 "job" you have in addition to other aspects of life. If law school becomes more and your other interests and loves go by the wayside; that is depressing.

The post-law school legal profession is even stranger. What's strange is the seeming goal of various legal groups to sort of create both a professional and social life that includes only interaction with other lawyers. YUCK! Why are there bar association theater groups and orchestras? Does creating an entire life around a profession that's depressing you help? I think not.


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