Student Organizations: Welcome New Students!
Dear Incoming Class:
On behalf of the Student Bar Association and the student body, I would like to congratulate you and welcome you as our newest members of the University of Connecticut Law School family. You should be proud of this accomplishment. The selection process is very competitive and you have conquered one of the biggest hurdles in the law school process. You are now officially members of the UConn Law community and we want you to embrace it.
Before you step onto campus in the fall, you will hear all kinds of stories about law school - some are true and others are urban legends. Though it may be true that your first year will be the hardest, most rigorous two semesters of study that you will face, find comfort in the fact that everyone is in the same boat and everyone survives. At times your character will be tested, but with hard work and perseverance you will prevail and find success, as thousands have done before you.
The most important thing to remember right now is to take it easy and enjoy whatever plans you have laid out for the summer. You will have plenty of time to move into the library, grapple with legalese, and make the transition from Webster’s Dictionary to Black’s Law Dictionary. For now, take time to clear your mind, get plenty of sleep, travel, and read books that have nothing to do with the law. Now, if you are unable to keep your mind off of what is awaiting you here, then consider this: think about how you want to contribute to the UConn Law community when you arrive. Think about the type of student you want to be and recognize that you can become that student here at UConn Law because you will have access to invaluable resources, a distinguished faculty, and a supportive student body.
Once you arrive, do not limit yourself. Rather, push yourself. You can be a student that volunteers in the local community, providing much needed legal service to people in need. You can be a student who mentors Hartford High School students who dream of one day being a law student like yourself. You can be a student that represents their class in the Student Bar Association, proudly advocating on their behalf. You can be a student that represents UConn Law at national moot court and mock trial competitions. You can be a student to publish scholarly legal articles. Here at UConn Law, you can be whoever you want to be as long as you are determined, work hard, and remain humble.
No matter what sort of student you become, remember that UConn Law School is a small community full of big opportunities. Think about how you will take advantage of them. Last year alone, students prepared taxes for low-income residents, assisted in neighborhood cleanup initiatives, and advocated for pro bono clients. Students ran symposia drawing highly respected scholars from around the world on topics ranging from the United States’ Constitution to the role of the Supreme Court in determining an outcome for the Affordable Care Act. Students represented UConn Law basketball, hockey, and soccer at interscholastic tournaments. Students even traveled to a softball tournament hosted by the University of Virginia School of Law (a must attend event prior to graduation). There are semi-formals, Halloween parties, and plenty of social events that will allow you to meet people from various backgrounds and create lifelong friendships. Though you will have to dedicate numerous hours to study, there will be plenty of time to get involved and have fun. Finding an appropriate work-life balance is critical to your success even in law school, studying should not be your entire existence. Find the time to relax with friends, network, and get involved in the Greater Hartford Area.
One last reminder: when you arrive in the fall, remember your fellow students are also going to be your future colleagues, so be sure to make many friends, smile often, help others, and most importantly be yourself. Here, all ships rise together, never alone. Never be afraid to fail, never be afraid to ask a question, and never be afraid to strive for excellence. Although I understand that is easier said than done, I know that each of you will find great success both personally and professionally.
I look forward to meeting you in the fall!
Franklin E. Perry II