I’ve probably typed my keyboard to nubbins with all of the times I wrote about how much I love school. As my first day at UVic approaches on Wednesday, I get progressively more and more excited; every textbook I pick up, every sentence I read, every notebook I page through leaves me happier.
I’m a born-and-bred Hermoine type, in other words. My nickname growing up was Encyclopedia Girl, my nickname from my best friend in high school is “Sher-Leah-lock”, and I’m sometimes even called “Professor (Lastname)” though I am still figuring out whether that one is meant to be endearing or demeaning. So, why am I choosing to go into law, rather than academia?
I almost went into academia. It was my original goal when I was a first year in university, after having decided that I was not meant for journalism (or, to be egotistical, that journalism was not meant for me) and I worked in the University’s Language department, meaning I got a lot of exposure into the goings-on of a professor.
Eventually, my advisor exposed me to the book which changed my life, and suggested a career in Asian law, which she saw as a suitable conduit for my passionate nature. I’ve been set on that course since, with a few minor thoughts and deviations in other fields and possibilities.
Sometimes though, I’ll remember how much I love studying, researching, and writing, and long for academia. One of my many functions at my old job was to proctor exams and classes where the professor was sick/absent, and I loved working with students, joking with them, and learning with them. It seems a damn right shame that I can’t be a part-time lawyer and a part time professor so I could fulfil both passions.
Ultimately, I made the choice of law over academia for two reasons: One was the idea that the power, respect and knowledge of international law a Juris Doctor (and M.A in International Relations) would confer upon me would give me a greater chance at fulfilling Tikkun Olam, a Jewish philosophical concept which means ‘repairing/healing/making right the world’. I would have a much higher reach of influence as a lawyer, and could do more to bring about justice and peace. The other reason is purely personal: An academic often has to travel all across the entire bloody continent to find a job, and I have a very specific needs for any town that I am going to live in, and cannot tolerate certain climates. I love academia, but not enough to forsake that particular bit of my adult independence.
I’m not going to make an absolute final decision though, until I take my LSATs.