The C-K Advantage

Hello all!  I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday filled with food, family, and fun!  Today we have the honor of having a guest post on the blog.  The blogger is a current 1L, Andrea Augustinas.  At this moment, Andrea is most likely relaxing after her first set of law school finals, but she was kind enough to take a break from her break to provide some insight as to why she chose Chicago-Kent.  I’m sure the majority of you will be deciding on which school is right for you in the near future, so this is a great time to debut the first of many guest posts.  Without further adieu….

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Right now you’re probably in the process of selecting schools to apply to, and if you’re like I was, you’re probably wondering what sets Chicago-Kent apart from other law schools. As a 1L, I’ve found that Chicago-Kent has provided me with some unexpected advantages that I would not have necessarily foreseen when I was in your shoes this time last year.

Kent Students Are Competitive, Not Cutthroat
Students are encouraged to debate, to push back, to ask tough questions. We’re given the encouragement to put our best efforts forward without being reminded each step of the way that we’re being graded against one another. Students work together and help each other out, and everyone gets a chance to make his or her voice heard during classes. Even the most overachieving students spend their energy focusing on their own grades and achievements, rather than constantly looking around to see who they can knock out of the running for the rank or jobs they want.

The Reading Room in the CK Library
The Reading Room in the CK Library

Kent Wants to Support You
Transitioning to law school is a huge adjustment – even if you were an undergraduate student who could memorize even the most throwaway details on demand, there is still something uniquely challenging about the learning process in law school. The advantage of Kent is that the faculty and staff are fully prepared to help you make the transition.

Abundant resources are available to students from day one – teachers are flexible with office hours in addition to letting you ask questions in person or via email; teaching assistants in each class are a wealth of insight and helpful tips for just about everything; even older students who have been in your shoes are often willing to lend a helping hand when you need it. Classes are designed with your status as a 1L in mind, with opportunities to discuss issues and get advice on pieces of the law school/becoming a lawyer puzzle.

Work/Life Balance – It Does Exist!
Another thing Kent strives to emphasize is that no one here wants you as a 1L to run yourself into the ground trying to ace your classes. The temptation to bury yourself in the mountain of work you’re assigned is very real; however it’s also the quickest way to make yourself absolutely sick with stress. The Kent community understands this, and they make an effort to supply outlets for students who might be feeling the pressure. Clubs and organizations schedule activities every day and most evenings – it’s rare for a day at Kent to go by with no opportunities for you to listen to a panel discussion, support a good cause (usually by purchasing a treat at one of the many bake sale fundraisers), or grab a free lunch while you meet members of an organization that appeals to your interests.

The 2015 Holiday Fest. The event was sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and a wide variety of our student organizations.
The 2015 Holiday Fest. The event was sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and a wide variety of our student organizations.

There are also plenty of off-campus events, which is great because taking advantage of Kent’s location in the heart of Chicago would be a terrible opportunity to waste. Networking and other social events meet at bars or restaurants around the city, allowing you to explore Chicago while also making critical connections with your fellow students, alumni, and practicing legal professionals.

One of my biggest fears about coming to law school was that I’d be lost in the shuffle, that no one would really care if I failed or succeeded, as long as I kept up with my tuition payments. I’m sure that’s the reality at a lot of law schools, but Chicago-Kent is simply not one of them.

– Andrea

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P.S. If you have any questions for Andrea, please feel free to send an email to the Admissions Office at admissions@kentlaw.iit.edu.