A great day! My first impressions of the 2012 BCL-LLB class at McGill have been overwhelmingly positive. What a group of interesting, intelligent, and friendly people! Registration Day was a mandatory event happening at the law school, where Orientation activities were spelled out in detail for those students participating, where free stuff from law firms was given out, where certain non-course-related administrative details were taken care of, and where we were fed copious amounts of delicious catered finger-foods. The whole milieu was conducive to meeting and greeting which, given the mutual curiosity and articulateness of the people involved, was a lot of fun.
Then there were the addresses from the Dean and the Assistant Dean, which were at once funny and thought-provoking, and which imbued us with a sense of McGill’s tradition as an institution espousing social and intellectual responsibility in civic life, while encouraging us to make this tradition our own and to carry it forward into our yet un-charted future. If that sounds in any way stuffy, the humour and humanity of the speakers made it, at least to me, anything but. Guest speakers today included a prominent lawyer, a judge from the Superior Court of Ontario, and the Privacy Commissioner, all graduates of McGill, who spoke, among other things, about the quality of education McGill offers to its students, the value of a trans-systemic approach in all aspects of the legal profession, the continuing rise of women in law, access to justice, and alternative careers for a law school graduate.
By the end of the speeches I was getting tired, so I decided to skip the soccer game planned for the first year students. I have decided that since I have been living in Montreal for a year now, and huge social events are frequently more a source of stress for me than a source of enjoyment, I will not take part in the Orientation activities, although almost everyone in my class is. Despite that, I have no worries about fitting in or making friends because almost everyone I have met today has been so open and friendly.