Issue 8, Volume 18
Picture this: walking up to the law building, ready to start the 2021 semester. Prepared for another year of breakdowns, fierce debates, and silently crying in the MLS library wondering why you embarked on this endless journey of torture. But as you get closer, something is different. The once stress-riddled faces of law students are now replaced by care-free, smiling students all excited to start class. And then you see it. The porta via sign, ‘coffee for JD students now free, open 24hrs’. This is the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Once drained by the hundreds spent on coffee on top of our crippling uni debt, we are now free to drive ourselves into the ground studying for days on end, with an endless supply of caffeine.
But as you venture upstairs, there’s more. Timetables, once confining you to the halls of the law building until all hours of the night, replaced with 9am-4pm schedules, leaving you free to go to the ‘welcome to 2021 bevs’ on Lincoln square. Your heart races, the law school surely can’t make this place actually enjoyable? Dumbfounded, you continue through these prestigious halls.
Sitting through your first day, wondering how you could possibly survive another year living on nothing but two-minute noodles and the occasional LSS-provided lunch, scurvy overtaking you, the looming announcement of prescribed texts overshadows this otherwise perfect day. But, in this wholly realistic depiction of 2021, the introductory seminar notes read ‘free online pdf textbooks for 2021 students’. You might collapse. This is simply too good to be true. The weight of the thousand-dollar debt you once saw threatening your enjoyable year is now a distant memory.
Finishing your first class, wondering how you’ll ever pass property law after the introductory lecture has destroyed your will to live, resigned to a sense of failure, imposter syndrome creeping up as you settle back into the routine of doing law, you get up to leave and find a quiet place to have an existential crisis. But then you spot it. Where once the 220 classrooms resided, is now a room headed ‘crying corner’. Filled with individual sound-proof pods, gone are the days of finding a quiet corner where no one can watch you drown your sorrows as you try not to get tears on your textbook that cost more than your month’s rent. Now, you can cry in peace.
As tensions rise during the first few weeks of the semester, stress building, and assessments looming, your sem leader walks in the door. Ready for another gruelling two hours of reading off a slide, you realise your sem leader hasn’t entered the room alone. Attached, a small harnessed dog, excitedly panning the room as it takes in the multitude of faces surrounding it. “Each stream has been assigned a dog”, he states. Your jaw drops. Unable to have pets at home, the thought of having a dog of your own causes a rush of serotonin to overpower you, a feeling long-forgotten.
The semester drones on, the crying corner has been utilised to its full capacity and having drunk half of Melbourne’s coffee supplies throughout the semester, not even your seminar dog can calm your exam anxiety. Your complimentary stress ball gavel graciously given to you on open day has been used to its full capacity. Nothing could possibly take this level of stress away. That is, until LSS makes their newest announcement, ‘Cohort end of semester paintball party, a great way to let off steam before exams’. Not even mooting could unleash your competitive side to this capacity. This is what you did the JD for. Now is the time.
Sigourney Goss is a first-year JD student.