To follow up on our December 22, 2006 post on taking time off before coming to law school, we asked 2L Sarah Waxman to weigh in on her work experience before law school. Here's what she had to say:
"Before law school, I worked in nonprofit immigration legal services for six years. I graduated from college with little idea (okay, no idea) of what I wanted to do with myself, though I knew I was interested in Latin America and immigration. I decided, almost on a whim, to try the legal services side of the convergence of these two interests. Two years' experience as a caseworker with the Midwest Immigrant and Human Rights Center whetted my appetite, and I spent the next four years developing and running the legal services program at a community-based nonprofit called Latinos Progresando. After six years working in legal services, it looked to me like something that might be called a long-term commitment, so I decided that law school was (as many people had been letting me know frequently for the previous several years) the next logical step.
Despite the near-overwhelming rigor of the first year of law school, I found it to be something of a joy to return to school. I had developed internal discipline and an acceptance of demanding schedules during my working years, and these skills served me well my first year. It was also a bit of a relief and a pleasure to give myself over to an all-ordering law school administration; unlike at work, where emergencies popped up, meetings intruded, and my time was rarely my own, at school everything was organized for me. All I had to do was study. A lot.
In short, coming back was not difficult; it feels at times selfish, and sometimes frustratingly unproductive, but I'm also grateful for the opportunity on a fairly regular basis, which I don't think I would have been seven years ago."