Last class until Graduation

Surreal, calming, exciting, relieved, and nervous, those are some of the emotions flowing through my head.
Tonight I am sitting in my last class in law school. There have been so many to people who have helped along the way. I will go into bar study mode in 2 weeks.
Honestly, I am thrilled I decided to enter law school even though I was over 40 with a wife and 2 kids. Here is to one journey ending and another journey beginning!

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3 down 1 to go! Time for a vacation!!

As June comes to a close my 3rd year of law school is complete. 1 year left and my 4 year part time journey through law school will be complete. I anticipate every passing day the importance of Solo Practice University will increase as transition into the practice of law becomes a reality in 2011. In the mean time I will take a deep breath and enjoy my last summer of law school. I think a trip to the the beach is in my near future. Anyone ever been to the Dominican Republic?

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The first 24 hours at the ABA Techshow! WOW!

My wife and I landed in Chicago Wednesday around 1:30 pm.  We took the L train downtown and had a short walk to the Hilton.  Sure we could have taken a cab, but it was exhilarating walking through the Windy City for the first time.  From our room window we can see the Navy Pier, Soldier Field and Grant park.  The Hilton is truly a beautiful hotel.  After registering for the Techshow we walked down the street for an early dinner at Grace O’Malley’s.

Later that night we attended http://www.ignitelaw.com and it was beyond expectation.  IgniteLaw was fast paced, informative, cutting edge, and a look into the future of law.  I am excited to tell you that each speaker will have their speech broadcast over youtube in a few days. Make sure you check out the videos once they are posted.

Thursday Morning kicked off with two of our own from SPU! Nicole Black and Carolyn Elefant gave a fabulous presentation on creating your online presence.  The expertise the two possessed was obvious to the entire audience. After a short break walking around the EXPO I attended a presentation by Matt Homann and Nicole Black on Managing Your Online Presence.  They had a couple of differing opinions on the value of each site and this actually added substantial value to the presentation.  The audience observed how two minds can view the sites differently and some of the best ways to use them.

This exhausting morning called for a great lunch, and Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria did the trick!!  A deep dish Chicago pizza was something I had only heard about deep in the heart of Georgia, LOL.  After lunch while I was walking around the EXPO I noticed a face that looked familiar but could not quite place.  It was SPU’s very own Stephanie Kimbro! I politely introduced myself and let her continue her day at the Expo.

The presentation after lunch was conducted by Lee Rosen and Carolyn Elefant.  It was titled “Crossing the Digital Divide: eMarketing to Clients and Prospects.  It was an eye opening talk on how to actually get the client from the virtual world into the office.  Excellent presentation.  The last presentation I attended was a meet the author session where Nicole Black and Carolyn Elefant held a very personal and informal question and answer session about the book they have Co-authored that is being released soon “Social Media for Lawyers The Next Frontier”.

Nicole Black, Carolyn Elefant, Lee Rosen, Matt Homann, and Stephanie Kimbro!! These are people I have followed online and it was truly a thrill to get to see them in person at the Techshow.  A great first day at the Techshow!  Looking forward to Friday.

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How did you decide what areas of law to practice?

When I scan the internet reading blogs it seems most lawyers have very defined practice areas.  As a law student it seems difficult to narrow down an area that I would like to practice.  I understand there are only 24 hours in a day and not enough time to be proficient at everything, but what goes into making the right choice?

Of course there are some obvious things to consider such as your interest, time, experience, and market size.  It is a difficult task trying to narrow it down.  It is possible my lack of experience is leading me to believe I want to practice in many areas.  What factors helped you decide?

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Any Chicago recommendations?

I have registered to attend the ABA Techshow next month.  This will be my first time at the techshow, and my first time in Chicago.  So for a short 3 day trip into Chicago what do you recommend?  Is there one Steak house our Sushi place that is awesome?  Any recommendation at all?  Any advice will be appreciated.

Thanks,

Michael

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ABA Techshow questions….

I was thinking about attending the ABA Techshow this March 25-27. You can find the information about the Techshow at www.techshow.com.  I was hoping those of you who have been in the past could offer me some advice.  I have a few questions about attending:

1. Is it worth it while I am still in law school?

2. If I choose to take my wife will she get bored in the room waiting for the night to arrive?

3. Is it a very big turnout?

4. How much do you think you have benefited from this in the past?

Please any advice you have would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Michael

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Another semester completed! YEAH!

Finally! The semester is over. For some reason it seemed like it would never end. This fall I added an extra class. 1 full time job, 1 part time job, 4 classes, and trying to spend time with my family was finally the limit.
I have wondered in the past how much is too much? With that extra class I have learned the answer the hard way, LOL. Next semester I am moving back to 3 classes too ease the load. The great thing is I am 1 year and 5 months from completing my J.D. Slowly but surely moving in the right direction.
Congrats to all my fellow students who have just finished exams! Enjoy the holidays and get some well deserved rest.

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Something always gets neglected….

Completing every task each day as a non-traditional law student is extremely difficult. As the new school year approaches I look back as see many things I did not give enough attention to in my life. This blog, my studies, work, family, and my faith. Shame and guilt comes over me when I realize there were so many things I wish I had done differently.
I do keep it in perspective. There is still tomorrow. Each task still can be completed, but the time past is gone and so are the opportunities missed. Time management must be a priority in the future.
What time management secrets have been most helpful to you? Any great words of wisdom that you can share with me today?

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Summer! Time to relax a little.

I have made it through the summer semester. Some days I honestly was not sure it would end. The hospital stay in the last week of May really took its toll. I was behind and never really caught up.
Finally, I can recharge! I need to take my beloved bride and 2 children on a well deserved vacation. A week at Hilton Head Island, SC should be perfect. We will ride our bikes, play some golf, and enjoy some fine restaurants.
I hope you take the time also to relax, and let your loved ones know they are one of the most important areas of your life! Enjoy your Summer!

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Are your clients happy to see you?

In 2011 I will take the bar exam. I often wonder which areas of law I want to practice. One thing is certain I want my clients to look forward to seeing me each time we meet. I think certain areas of law lend themselves to this type of relationship. For example, It seems in Immigration law clients would be looking forward to coming into or staying in the country that they would look forward to coming into my office. Bankruptcy clients have a great have a great amount of stress that can be partially relived by seeing an attorney. Criminal defendants wrongly accused I would think would look forward to seeing thier attorney.
It is possible that you may have this type of relationship in any practice, but the question remains Are your clients happy to see you?

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