Organization for ‘non-traditionals’ provides support and camaraderie

Today, I was chatting with classmates about media coverage of high-profile cases and how it affects the jury pool. To provide an example, I commented on the intense coverage as the nation watched a white Bronco run the highways of LA and how many of us walked away with strong opinions that day.

“How old are you?” said the classmate to my right.
“27,” I answered, not sure how that was relevant – but dreading what I knew would follow.

“Yeah, we were in third grade during the OJ thing. We don’t remember it.”

Ah yes, the life of a non-traditional student. It involves daily reminders that you aren’t quite like everyone else.

I had a job after undergrad and changed my mind about my career aspirations. I didn’t think it was that uncommon, but there are times when I really do feel – different. I’m not even old!

But to a 22 year-old fresh out of undergrad, all bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and full of youthful exuberance, I guess cynical, corporate road kill like myself might as well be their grumpy Aunt Edna.

I’m happy with the choices I made prior to law school. I’m happy that I went into the real world, faced a few dragons, signed my name on a few dotted lines and gained experience in the things we discuss daily in our classes.

And now I’m happy to have a group of fellow “oldsters” so that I don’t have to sit in my rocking chair alone, complaining about “kids today” while shaking my head in exasperation.

The Non-Traditional Law Students Association has found new life and is inviting all non-traditional students to join us. Our first meeting was a meet and greet on October 5. Our next meeting is scheduled for October 26 at 12:30 in room 203. Todd Rogers from the Office of Career Services and other non-traditional graduates will speak with us about job-hunting as a non-traditional student

Non-traditionals are generally defined as those who didn’t go straight to law school after getting their bachelor’s. Some of us have extra appendages (kids, spouses, litters of animals) and most of us go home to numerous chores, mouths to feed in some manner, and maybe even stress over the next mortgage payment. Our ages span from the mid-20s to people who have celebrated their 35th birthday several times over.

It’s a great place to meet others that are “like you” and share war stories about kids eating memos the night before the assignment is due, balancing soccer practice with law prom, and ways to maintain a family life while keeping up with your briefing.

Natalie Hull, 3L