By Molly Kaelin, Candidate for Juris Doctor, 2020, Stetson University College of Law
When you first research Stetson Law you are no doubt looking at the academic accolades, stunning list of world-renowned professors, and exceptional program options Stetson Law has to offer.
However, after you have planned your entire career of greatness, you will soon regroup and focus on the present; you are going to law school and you want to dive right in. Here are some ways:
Stetson Law has over 45 student organizations and they are all fabulous. Shortly after you arrive at the law school, all the organizations will get together at the annual Stetson Law Student Organization Fair, commonly known as Org Fair. Here you can talk to leaders from the organizations and get more information on their missions. You will also find out meeting times and events, so you can mark your calendar.
One of the first things you will learn about is pro bono work. Pro bono work is volunteer work. At any law school, you will find yourself doing pro bono. At Stetson Law you will need 60 hours of pro bono, at least 30 of those hours being legal pro bono. Sixty hours does not sound like a lot, and it’s not, but, honestly, it will sound like a lot once you are presented with your assignments. However, this is a huge blessing in disguise. A blessing that will not only help the community but one that will benefit you as an involved student as well.
Of course, the benefit to the community is first and foremost. There are many people that need help and, rumor has it, legal help is expensive. The community needs you and your talents. You should never forget that you are, in fact, doing this for the betterment of society. Having said that, pro bono is also a way to get involved and to network throughout the legal community. Through pro bono you’ll find like-minded people who share your values. You can find pro bono opportunities through many channels. Typically, you will find them through campus organizations, career development, and campus communications. Additionally, professors will mention opportunities during class and are great resources for pro bono suggestions.
After your classes start you will be wanting to blow off some steam and you should. Intramurals are a great way to get out and have some fun. We’ve got it all at Stetson Law: soccer, softball, basketball, and many more. Not a professional athlete? No problem. Just get out there regardless of skill level because intramurals are about fun. It is also a great way to meet people.
Follow Your Nose
If you are still totally unsure, that’s fine! Just go to organization meetings and then find your path. Don’t be shy! Go to the organizations with missions you agree with and ones you don’t agree with. Then stick with the organizations that speak to you, the ones that fulfill you, the ones that make you say “YES!”
Then, keep going to those. There will always be ways to get involved with the executive boards of these organizations and make real impact.
Originally from St. Augustine, Florida, Molly Kaelin is a Double Hatter in her 2L year at Stetson. She received her bachelor's degree from Stetson Law in 2015. She plans to practice Patent and Intellectual Property Law upon graduation. In her spare time, she likes to play tennis and cuddle with her cat, Annie.