University Diaries: Law School and The Fool

Level 1: What Is An A?

It was not until late in my law degree that I really came to understand what an ‘A’ mark meant. Once I did, however, I finally began to understand what kind of work I had to put in, and produce, in order to get those top marks. Therefore, I consider the understanding of what an ‘A’ means critical to the substantive ability to understand what kind of work an ‘A’ mark entails for a law student.

One thing that you will hear a lot about is the importance of writing in a specifically ‘legal’ way. In conjunction with the phrase ‘legal writing,’ you will often hear the terms ‘clear and concise.’

‘Our deepest fear’

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

When I was 12 years old someone handed me a note with this Nelson Mandela quote on it. They told me that it reminded them of me, and that I should take some time to understand why that might be.

At a moment in time where I was deeply troubled by the world growing inside me, as well as the world I saw around me, this quote did no less than change my life; so much so that I got half of the quote tattooed on my body; a sort of keepsake to keep me grounded in the path that I knew, even then, that I wanted to go down.