About This Blog
A blog about my life, universe, etc. At any given time you might find something endlessly interesting or just me ruminating on something else, which no one (not even myself) finds interesting. That's the way blogs go, I suppose. Anyway, I was eleventh in line, and you weren't. Hah!
Scripture of the Moment 2 Nephi 2:27 Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.
The views and opinions expressed herein are not attributable to my employer, Blogger, Google, those who link to me, or anyone other than the author (as indicated). Comments of visitors are the responsibility of the invididuals posting. No responsibility is taken for the content of materials linked to from this site. Any questions relating to the administration of this site or its content should be directed to Sarah Marie Parker-Allen, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
-- If I mention something that's been published and is still available on the Internet, I will link to it. Well, if I know it's there, anyway.
-- Once I've posted something, I will not make substantive changes to the body of the post. Any changes will be noted with an "EDIT" tag at the bottom of the post in question, or will be noted in a subsequent post. Typos, stylistic errors, and link updates will occur, without time limit (though if it's been a while, I'll let you know). If I really really regret a post, it's likely I'll post about cats or something for a while in pennance. You've been warned.
-- If I find something through the efforts of another blogger (in fact, of anyone I can link to), I'll credit them with a link (the style of such a link is pretty much up to my mood, so don't expect consistency in that area).
-- My comment policy is listed below.
I like comments, and I'll keep them activated. HOWEVER, if you want to start a flamewar, go somewhere else. If you want to get me to start arguing with you about Ohio State vs. Michigan, whether Mormons are Christian, how stupid being spoiler free is, or pretty much anything else inflamatory (inflamatory is in the eye of me in this case -- if you don't trust my judgement, too bad), go somewhere else. All links to pornography, all instances of vulgar language, and anything else I don't think is appropriate for my sisters, brother, neice, and nephew to see (ages 1-18), or quite frankly appropriate for ME to see, will be edited as I see fit (probably with links to something else, or alternate words, or what have you). All spam comments, including blatant off-topic self-promotion, will be deleted. If you've been banned, feel free to email me; if you're uncivil, please know that I'm interested in finding out exactly how many people I can add to my killfile without bringing my processer speed to zero, and don't mind using your address in my experiments. I reserve the right to delete and/or ban anyone I want. If you need to say it that badly, go get your own blog. They're free, you know.
A Note About Chatting and Emails
I'm not what you would call an extremely social or extraverted person. As a matter of fact, I tend to test 100% introvert on Myer-Briggs and other personality profile tests. Therefore, please be aware that most of the time, if I don't already know you (either in person or through weeks/months/years of email contact) the chances are I won't be very talkative if you IM me. I like having a long time to consider what I say, and that goes double for what I say to total strangers. Please don't think me scary, rude, hateful, or even just someone in a perpetual bad mood, if chat efforts are unsuccessful. Quite frankly, it's probably better for you to go find someone else to chat with, unless you have something significant to say. And if it's that important, you should probably email me. Which reminds me to let you know now that if you do choose to email me, it might be days, weeks, months, years, or never before I email you back. It takes a lot of energy for me to come up with replies to random inquiries from strangers, and most of the time there's something I'd rather be doing instead. Your understanding is appreciated. I'm not saying don't try, I'm just saying -- have minimal expectations, okay? Thanks. Oh, and if you DO know me, don't treat this statement as an excellent excuse not to talk to me. You know who you are.
Law School Admissions: Essay Prep
So, I'm working out some basic positions before I actually go ahead and write my law school admissions essays. This is not just background information/positioning, however: I tend to get mildly freaked out by the chapters in law school prep books which bear titles and themes such as: "We lawyers all hate it here, please get an MBA instead." This stuff is supposed to make me feel better after encountering naysaying; it's very narrowly focused apologetics, essentially.
I'm not posting because I need to post something (though I do) or to brag about how swell my thought processes are, but rather in hopes of getting comments from the learned blogging community (which is heavily populated by lawyers.) So, feel free to comment.
Why do I want to go to law school? (philosophy)
I want to go to law school because I believe it will prepare me for a worthwhile, yet sustainable, career, which will give me opportunities to both make the world better and pay off my student loans. Moreover, I am well-suited to the practice of law, both temperamentally speaking and in terms of the topics and methods which interest me. And, though it's true law school cuts off some options, I feel it is of more broad application than a PhD in international studies (said PhD is not excluded from future possibilities, anyway -- especially seeing as how I'll be working to stay published.)
What do I want to do with a law degree, once I have it? (plans after law school)
I would like to help other people through a system that is both complicated and often illogical. While my ideal job would be something along the lines of helping Eastern European businessmen and bureaucrats build and become better able to succeed in a Western-style free market/democratic society, I am also moved by the cause of ordinary citizens in the United States who simply cannot be expected to devote the resources necessary to understand and utilize the legal system effectively. Therefore, I am open to local prosecutorial positions, opening my own private practice, joining a small firm, or working for a public interest organization, if the opportunity arises (unlikely, but possible.)
Specific plans include expanding on the work I'm doing for Mom, as far as creating educational materials are concerned, and becoming certified as a public defender. I also intend to serve as an example to the girls and young women at church, as a woman with professional obligations and intellectual interests who still retains both her faith and her committment to the church.
Though I find it unlikely that I will find the practice of law intolerable, I may come to a point where I can't make enough from private practice (allowing time for family and outside interests) to make it worth my while. Therefore, I also intend to seek part-time teaching opportunities in paralegal education programs at local community colleges, with an eye to potentially taking up teaching work at a law school in the future. To that end I will also strive to publish both informally (via a blog) and formally (1-2 articles per year).
Moreover, I will continue to seek education in outside areas, both through outreach programs (e.g. BYU Independent Study) and through regular participation in outside academic groups and cross-disciplinary groups (such as the Mormon Studies in the Humanities Association.) And, I will continue to work on my language and cultural skills: before I attend law school, I will visit Eastern Europe for the purposes of gaining a TORFL rating, and will continue to work on my Russian skills while in school. Later, I may add other languages as necessary, and will continue my association with various organizations focused on the area.
What do I want to do while I'm in law school?
While at law school, I intend to publish at least two articles for law review/journals, to work as a research assistant for a professor, and to join the Federalist Society, the J. Reuben Clark Society, and the local Bar and Inn of Court student sections in my community. I also intend to compete for a place on Moot Court and Law Review, and to devote at least 500 hours to pro bono or public service (this works out to about 5 hours a week -- or about 10 hours a week in the 2nd and 3rd years.) I will also continue my non-law school activities: participating in YSA, attending church, and fulfilling any callings that may present themselves. And I will likely continue to support my mother's private practice, doing research, public relations, and copy-editing.
What helps me stand out from other candidates intellectually?
I am tenacious and I have the courage to face the unknown -- I am dissatisfied with not knowing, and willing to put forth considerable effort to resolve any questions or uncertainties I uncover. I believe in being sure, of finding the truth, and of behaving as though both history and human knowledge matter to the real world -- because they do. I also have various other intellectual gifts (including a gift for words,) and I strive to use all of my abilities for the good of those around me.
What helps me stand out from other candidates socially/culturally?
I am a Mormon in the Midwest, who has stood in line for Star Wars, grew up a Unitarian Universalist, and has lived in 5 states. My grandfather served both in World War II and in the Spanish Civil War; my great-grandparents fled Eastern Europe as children. I'm also an INTJ if you care about stuff like that, and I was even born on a cusp!
What are the mistakes or blemishes on my record?
I have some very serious loan repayment issues which I am working to resolve. I also have a lot of gaps in my employment/school record, there's a six year gap between the last quarter I took as a full-time student and my graduation date, and most problematically, I have a small number of "fail" and "C" grades that require explanation.
What are the strengths on my record?
My GPA in my majors is far higher than my average GPA, and my average GPA is .2 above the median at my university. My LSAT score is quite high. I have done something "real" outside the world of college, though admittedly, nothing of a "professional" nature.