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Sapere aude - dare to be wise
Wednesday, July 21, 2004
Posted 2:03 PM by Kelly
Law Review Decisions
I discovered today the deadline for accepting a law review invitation is Friday. For those with offers from more than one law review who are still wrestling with the decision, here are few factors to consider:

  • Objective - What exactly do you want or expect to get out of your law review experience? Ask yourself why you want to join a law review. Then try to figure out which one might best help you achieve your goals.  
  • Timing/Workload - Last year, IICLR's note had a completion deadline in the fall. IHLR and ILR had completion deadlines in the Spring. Consider your fall and projected spring schedules and responsibilities  and plan accordingly. As a procrastinator with several things going on in the fall last year (OCI, Moot Court, work) I knew I needed the spring deadline. Others I knew who finished in the fall were ecstatic to have that project out of the way so early in the year. (I'm not sure if these deadlines are the same this year, but a representative from each law review could tell you if they haven't already).  
  • Topic - What legal issues interest you? What topic might you like top spend several months researching? In general, ILR is open to any topic, with the understanding that they would like to stay away from too much overlap with our other 2 reviews if possible. IHLR, of course, is focused in the health law area. IICLR is a bit broader in scope, with a focus on international/comparative notes.  Regardless of your choice, it is not too early to begin thinking of a topic for your note. If you have a specific interest, that may dictate which law review would be the best fit for you.
  • People -  Who is on the board of each law review? Do you know these people? Do you want to get to know these people. If you, regrettably, have a person at the school with whom you absolutely do not get along then it may be a good idea not to join a law review with them. That said, most of your work is independent so this shouldn't be an overriding factor. Do, however, realize that the current board will pick next year's board. When qualifications and performance are equal, personality and personal relationships play a part in the decision-making process. That is something to keep in mind if you would like to be on a law review board your last year. 
  • Professors - Which professors serve as advisors to the law reviews? Which professor might be a potential advisor for you individual note? Again, this is a minor factor - but one you might consider if your decision is close. All the law reviews are student run. Most student contributors will have very little contact with the profs who serve as advisors to the reviews themselves. But it's nice to know that someone you like/respect is there if necessary (and will be there should you make exec board in the future). As for your note, the topic you choose will likely dictate who your prof advisor is (you simply ask if they have time to help you out with your note). So, for example, if it's between an international topic and a health topic, consider which profs would be the best source of constructive criticism and with whom you might rather work.

This is not an exhaustive list but will hopefully help those who received more than one offer and are still trying to make up their minds. Congratulations to all law review candidates and enjoy the rest of the summer!

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