I always see people on social media asking about the possibility of being a working law student. But this doesn’t surprise me at all.
I know exactly how costly studying law could be. This is actually my primary reason why I became a working student of law in the first place. Therefore, it is unsurprising that aspiring lawyers, like me, are looking into this.
7 difficulties a working law student face almost every single day
Are you planning to work full-time while pursuing your law degree? If so, please know that you have my full support! But then, let me remind you again that this will never be easy.
To give you a glimpse of what lies ahead, here are some of the disadvantages/challenges a working student will or might experience at some point of his life in law school:
You won’t have the time and energy to study.
The reason for this is pretty obvious. When you work an 8-5 job, you basically let go of at least 8 hours of your day. And in law school, you could really use that amount of time.
Also, a day job will surely drain your energy. This is especially so if you are in a high-pressure work environment. As such, you may not have enough energy to finish your law school tasks or readings.
As a working law student, you’ll probably suffer sleep deprivation.
Eventually, you’ll compensate. So, if you don’t have enough time to study because of work, you’ll do what I and other working law students have been doing until now: staying up late at night.
Weekends may not be your “rest days” anymore.
As a working student, you’ll find out that weekend classes are life savers. You’ll discover that attending classes after an 8-hour work EVERYDAY is just torture on your part. (Trust me, not even a work from home set up can save you!)
So, as early as now, be prepared to trade your weekend “me time” for some action-packed law school weekend classes.
You may have to skip work sometimes.
Prior to the advent of work from home, I used to skip work because of midterm and final exams, and some case digest work. With the Manila traffic embracing me after office hours, I couldn’t just risk being late for my exams and classes because of last minute office tasks.
Some say it’s easier these days because of the work from home arrangements. But to be honest, I can’t see any big difference.
Whether you physically report for work or not, you still have to work during office hours. This means, you’ll have to stay away from your books or reviewers until you’re done working.
You may find it difficult to accept promotion at work.
When you get promoted, you assume bigger tasks and responsibilities. You can’t just have that type of “commitment” while in law school.
I am not saying it is impossible to be promoted at work and excel in law school. It’s just that this is something you really have to ponder on when faced with the actual situation.
You may miss some law school classes.
There are days when you just have to render overtime work and can’t do anything about it. Unless you want to be reprimanded (or worse, get fired), zoning out your boss is the last thing you’ll ever think of doing. Thus, there will be times when you’ll have to skip lectures just to get some overtime work done.
You’ll have to trade off some things in life as you become a working law student.
As if the foregoing list is not yet enough…
Yes, you’ll have to sacrifice and compromise as you finish your law degree as a working student. As such, you may have to miss some family events and reunions. Your friends won’t see you as often as they used to. Your partner or lover might even accuse you, at some point, of not loving and caring for him enough.
All because of law school.
That’s okay. We’re here. You’re not alone.
Don’t panic just yet…
Did I scare the hell out of you?
Indeed, the things I mentioned above can be a little scary and overwhelming for someone who’s planning to become a working law student. However, it doesn’t mean that becoming one is impossible.
As one of my esteemed law professors used to say, “Not all things difficult are impossible.” And I couldn’t agree more with him. Otherwise, I and my fellow working students won’t be here giving you advice and recounting our stories.
Yes, it will entail a ton of hard work on your part, but you’ll get by with determination, focus, and perseverance.