Best of luck on the Bar Exam next week!

Well, the Bar Exam is next week, so on behalf of our entire Barry Law Library staff, I want to wish all of our graduates taking the Bar Exam the best. We’re all sending out hopes, thoughts, wishes, and prayers in your direction. We’ve seen most of you studying in the Library all summer, commiserated with you, encouraged you, and tried to buoy your spirits. We know you can do this. Your success is our success, and you have a bunch of people rooting hard for you. We look forward to hearing the good news from each of you in September!
And in less than a week, you’ll have your lives back — your friends and families and significant others, all the fun times and distractions and hobbies you’ve been missing out on all summer. You deserve some YOU time, and it’s almost that time.
You’ve got this, Barry alumni. We know you do. Good luck!

Law Library display for July 2017: Popular Culture and the Law

It’s the summer, and that means time to read for pleasure (maybe at the beach, poolside, or on your way to some vacation destination), go to the movies, or catch up on your favorite shows.*
With that in mind, the Law Library’s July display case is dedicated to Popular Culture and the Law, so please come by and check it out.

If you’re taking the Popular Culture and the Law course with Professor Simpson-Wood this summer or in the fall, we have several of the books in the display case in our Reserve Collection, and we also have a wide selection of legal-themed movies on DVD for you to check out.

Pop quiz time! What are YOUR favorite legal-themed movies, TV shows, novels, documentaries, podcasts, etc.? Let us know!

* Unless you’re studying for the Bar Exam, that is. In which case, keep doing what you’re doing, know we’re rooting for you, and remember you’ll have plenty of time to catch up on pop culture in a few more weeks!

Best of luck to all our alumni taking the Bar Exam next week!

A message to all our recent Barry Law alumni:
I’m not even sure if you’ll see this until after you’ve taken the Bar Exam (even though we’re still a few days away), but we wanted to wish you all the best of luck on the exam next Tuesday and Wednesday, and the best of all things that follow.
It has been a pleasure getting to know you all in the Library, talking to you during your rare moments of down time, and hearing about everything you’ve accomplished already and everything you plan to do on the other side of law school. For those of you who took one of our Advanced Legal Research classes, we know you’ll be well-equipped to handle anything your future employers throw at you, and we appreciate you giving us a chance to show you some new stuff.
If we can ever be of any help to you, research-related or otherwise, do not hesitate to call on us. All the Reference Librarians would be happy and honored to help you on your paths, wherever they lead, or make you look that much better once you get there.
Meanwhile, you’ve planned and prepped and practiced hard for this. You know more than you think you do, and this will go better than you think it will. I doubt it will be easy or fun, but we know you can handle the Bar Exam, followed by whatever comes next.
Let us know when you have some good news to share, and take care of yourselves and the people most important to you in the meantime. They will be thrilled to have you back in their lives!
Good luck. You’ve got this. Everyone at the Law Library — everyone in your lives — is rooting for you, praying for you, and wishing you well.

New study rooms are OPEN!

Barry Law students! Our beautiful, brand-new study rooms are officially OPEN! We appreciate your patience over the last several months of construction and renovation, but we think you’ll be pleased.
As always, you can reserve study room times at this link, available through our Law Library website:
From now on, the study rooms will stay locked, and you can check out keys to each one from the Circulation Desk once your reserved time has come.
Study hard, and use them well!

What Culture Will Your New Law Firm Provide and Will You Fit In?


It’s that time of the year again.  Students are graduating, studying for the Bar, and dreaming about that perfect legal job.  Since that job is probably your second most important goal besides passing the Bar, it’s important to give it more than a little thought if you are about to enter your second or third year of law school.  Ask yourself:

  • What type of attorney do you plan on emulating when you start your first job as an associate or as you go solo?
  • Are you looking at your first job as a place to show your initiative?
  • Are you interested in being a lawyer to help people because you’ve always been told you are an empathetic person?

The answers to these questions and more show the type of personality traits and interests that are important to you.  You will likely want to join a firm, small or large, that recruits people with similar traits and interests to your own.  The culture of that firm and your match with that culture is probably one of the best predictors of whether you will stay with that firm for a number of years or for just a few years.

So what is law firm culture?

Several practice journals define culture as how a firm does business and how the firm’s written and unwritten rules for behavior dictate how you will be expected to interact with clients, partners, and other firm employees.  So, it’s important that you dive in and ask some hard questions of yourself, if you are going solo, or, if you are applying to a law firm, of those who conduct your interview.  What traits and interests are the people in this new setting looking for?  Do they want an associate who exhibits strong verbal reasoning, manageability, sociability, energy levels and assertiveness or something else?  How will they find that associate?

Some firms have begun to introduce personality testing into their hiring processes. So don’t be surprised if they ask you to take some type of predictive measurement of whether you might be a good culture fit for that law firm.  One of the tools for determining cultural fit is the  Sheffield Legal Assessment. Built for the legal profession, it assesses personality traits and patterns that distinguish lawyers from the general population and distinguishes lawyers working in different practice areas.

personality test

For a brief analysis of traits specific to lawyers or students aspiring to become lawyers, and the niches they might be interested in see an article about How to Curb the Law Firm Exodus published in the ABA Journal late last year.  It may give you the insights you need to make just the right move in your career trajectory.