Sarah Downey Photograph


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I'm Going to Law School!

February 28, 2007   I went through the really fun process of studying for the LSAT and taking it twice before applying to law school, which of course involved cover letters and recommendations and resumes and all that.  But as I was going through this process for UConn law, which was the only place I really wanted to go, I realized that it was also the only place that I could afford, as I'm from Connecticut.  If it was the only place I wanted to be and also the only place I could pay for, I figured I should just take a risk and put all my eggs in one basket, so to speak.  And so I did.  I tried to make my interest really come through in my application.  There was even a spot on the application where they asked which other schools I was applying to, and I was happy to show them that they were the only one (although it simultaneously horrified me).  I mean, I applied early decision to Hamilton, but that was different-- if for some reason I got deferred or rejected, I'd still have time to think about where else I'd want to go (but as with UConn, Hamilton was the only place I wanted to be).  Some law schools have early admission, but most have rolling.  The longer it takes for you to hear back, the better your chances, which is SO stressful.  I was shakily checking my mailbox every day since I applied in late November.  As the days went by, my chances for getting in got better, but the deadlines for jobs I'd want in case I didn't get in got closer.

I got out of a thesis meeting on Monday feeling sort of overwhelmed with all the stuff I have to do, and I remember thinking, "Man, it would be nice if I checked my mailbox right now and I was into UConn because I'd be able to relax."  And normally I don't check my mail on Mondays because it's halfway across campus and I'm pretty lazy about any physical activity outside designated practice time and I REALLY wanted to take a nap, but I had this weird feeling that the letter might be there.  So I walked over and went up to my mailbox and looked in the little window and saw that there was something inside.  Naturally my stomach dropped and I started getting intense fight or flight response, which had been happening literally every time I so much as went near my mailbox since November.  And then I saw the UConn letterhead, and I almost passed out.  Here was a letter that was going to dramatically influence the next few years of my life for better or worse; I almost couldn't open it.  But then I did, and the first thing I saw was the word "Congratulations," and I turned to a girl next to me and sort of breathily said, "Hi, I don't know you, but I just got into law school and I need to give you a hug right now."  I still don't know who she is, but at the time we were like best buds jumping up and down.  I ran out to the diner and jumped one of my friends and gave him a bloody nose, called my dad and just laughed hysterically to the point where he couldn't understand a word I was saying but still comprehended that I had gotten in, and sprinted over to the career center to tell my counselor.  She was on vacation, so I'm still waiting to run in there and tell her.

I'm incredibly relieved now that I know what I'll be doing with the next three years, and I'm THRILLED that I get to continue being a student.  I had such a great time at Hamilton and I know it has to end, but at least I'll get to use what I've learned here while I'm at UConn.  And I know that Hamilton has prepared me not only to be accepted, but to do something that matters while I'm there.  All right, time to go watch "Lost..."