All good things end…or do they?

As my time at 36th district comes to an end, I have reassured my passion for law, and my ability to adapt to different aspects of the law quickly.  I have made a bond with my team that is going to assist me throughout not only law school but with my career as a future attorney.  I have made personal connections with judges, attorneys, officers, and other staff members.  I have also been offered another internship already with an attorney who specializes in entertainment law, which I unfortunately had to respectfully decline because of scheduling.  He is actually getting together a girl group for a branch of A&M Octone records,I thought it was pretty cool, but being realistic I don’t have time for it.

With the connections and friends that I have made during my internship, I can go into law school more confinement.  I feel like I have an inside on how to survive law school from actual law students, and I have an in on making it in the professional realm, with the judges and attorneys that give the best advice.  As I continue to reflect on what I have learned, I see how beneficial internships are, because I have had the chance to put what I will learn in law school to use already, which will give me better perspective and put a meaning behind the mock trials, and case briefs that I will be doing.

However, this internship may be over but it is not the end really. I was offered a paid position as a student intern here when I begin my second year of law school.  How amazing is that?  I have been extremely blessed, I’m thankful for the opportunities this class has helped me receive. This internship has helped me cement my purpose in this world; helping others.

“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it fearlessly”

-Steve Maraboli

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Getting in the Know

As my time here is almost over, I am trying to learn more than just the court process, but the law school process.  Because, I have begun to master almost every task that is going to be thrown at me during the internship, I stated to chat with the younger attorneys on the team about law school.  

Because I have been reading conflicting stories about the first year law school experience online, I decided to get the truth straight from the “horses mouth.”  The judge had been out for the week on vacation to the Bahamas (so joules) so the docket was really slow, like three cases a day.  So while completing house cleaning matters, I was able to really pick their brains. 

One attorney, a young lady that graduated from Spellman University gave me lots of useful information.  First, she went to law school at Wayne State University, which is my top choice school.  I was excited to hear what she had to say.  I didn’t beat around the bush I asked “is the first year really as impossible as they say?” Her answer was honest, it is challenging but they use the first year to “weed out” the people who don’t really want it.  However, it is far from impossible, if you do the work you will be fine.  No more days of procrastination.  She also gave me advice on how to get outlines from other students and the importance of forming “alliances.” She also reassured that the instructors do randomly call on you, but not to embarrass you and they will walk through the cases with me.

Now on to the fun part.   I first inquired if I should join a student org my first year; her answer was “definitely.”  Then I asks which one’s to join.  The one she said almost immediately was the “Black Student Law Association”  they help immensely with study groups, campus tours, outlines, and helping incoming minority students get access to resources.  That org is on my top priority list.  

Finally, she assured me that it gets better.  The classmates become your family and the faculty are very approachable.  One professor went on bike rides with the students regularly.  She also made a point to get to know the counselors, advisors, and other staff because they become your best resources.  

The second young lady I spoke with gave me a different story.  She started off saying she ended her first year in the hospital.  Her best advice was; “don’t be like me.”  She attended University of Detroit Mercy, which is second on my list.  So, her comments were concerning to me.  But her habits are far from mine, she told me that she didn’t even proof read her personal statement, as I have had a minimum of six drafts read by three different people.  But in the end she said, “Look at me now, look where I am, I made it you will be fine.” This did make me feel better, but I have always been a person to do the work, so I know I will struggle but I will make it.  

First weeks

The first three weeks of my internship have been a whirlwind.  I finally see why they say internships are necessary, because no classroom could ever teach me the things that I have learned already.  My time so far as an intern for the defending attorneys at 36th district court have been, exciting, fast paced, and full of new terminology. If I could sum up everything I learned in these first few weeks it would be; it’s not worth it.  What I mean by that is that no crime is ever worth the court process, the fees, the tears, and the stress.  I’ve seen a total of about twenty people sent to jail in my short time working.  

In this first blog I will describe my not-so typical day at work.  Well, My days start at 8 am in downtown Detroit at the court house. I pay for parking, and go in through the employee entrance and speak to all the security guards who escort me to and from my car everyday.  I then report to court room 438 where the madness begins, in the room my team of attorneys are running everywhere making calls, talking with clients and clerks, and speaking with each other, all while making sure I am comfortable.  I choose a person to shadow and my day begins.  We start with interviewing the walk-in’s to see what part of the process they are in i.e. adjournment, pre-trial, or tail, and we see if they will take any pleas offered, and make sure they have set up a payment plan, and proceed to get any other information that will help their character during their case.  I love this part of my day because I get to interact with actual people and see situations in real life.  The second week, they let me interview the jailers, the people brought over from the jail that are in holding cells in the back, this was kind of terrifying at first because, the male and some females would try and flirt and scream at me, but It helped me perfect my poker face, fast.  Of course, with the jailer interviews I was escorted by police officers and a senior attorney on the team.  This internship is extremely fast paced and put me in real situations, so everyday is exciting and new.  

After the client interviews, the trials begin, during this part of the day I write up “advice of rights” forms and other materials that are sensitive to the trial.  After the first docket is done, the team and I head to the courtroom upstairs and start the process all over again.  Again, everyday is different but, these are the basics of what happens.  Sometimes we make phone calls for the jailers to collect money for bail from their relatives, other times we are running around like crazy to collect missing files and paperwork.  When we end the day I debrief with one of the attorneys and ask any questions that I had during the day, or just talk about the events of the day.