Trials of an Event Law-aison

The trials of a second-year law student at the University of Alberta.

A New (Academic) Year

Sophia Peng - Friday, November 11, 2011

Welcome back to my blog!  I can't believe I'm already into the third month of 2L.  Time is just really flying by.  This term I'm taking jurisprudence, civil procedure, evidence, intellectual property, and administrative law, all of which are required courses except for IP.   READ MORE

An Awaited Judgment, Summer Research...

Nadya Ogloff - Tuesday, May 31, 2011

As some of you may recall from one of my earlier posts, the legal question in our first year moot scenario was based on the real-life case R. v. J.A. At the time, J.A. was awaiting judgment at the Supreme Court of Canada. It was quite an anticipated judgment, and the SCC released its judgment (2011 SCC 28) last Friday morning and decided 6-3 against prior consent to sexual activity anticipated to occur during unconsciousness. Whatever your opinion is on this matter, I encourage you to read the judgment (including the dissent) as it is a pretty interesting one, and gives you an idea of Canadian sexual assault laws. One of the things we were told in our courses (especially constitutional and criminal law) was to notice patterns in the way particular justices of the Court decides cases. Based on some of the other cases I have studied this year (in criminal law and during moot preparation), it is not surprising to see the way the Court was split in J.A., or even who wrote for the majority or dissent. The reasons by McLachlin C.J. as well as Fish J. show how the same Criminal Code provisions can appear to imply different things. For most though, the more interesting parts are probably in the policy aspects. It was great to see that many of the arguments raised by both sides in J.A. were also covered by our class in our moots and factums.   READ MORE

Exams: Done!

Nadya Ogloff - Monday, May 02, 2011

It's such a relief to be finally finished exams! We had five finals (property, constitutional, criminal, torts, and contracts, in that order), and although three of those happened in four days, I don't think I would have organized it much differently even if I had a choice because they were organized quite optimally. I think it was one of the most intense exam sessions I've ever had because they were, in practicality, all 100% finals (except constitutional which was 75%). Most of the exams covered material since September with an emphasis on classes since January. They were all open book except for criminal, but even for crim we were provided with a list of case names along with some sections of the Criminal Code.   READ MORE

The Moot

Nadya Ogloff - Sunday, March 27, 2011

We just finished our moots last week and it's really nice to be done so we can all focus on the final exams coming up next month. Pretty much every law student does the moot at one point or another, where we argue a fictional case before a panel of "judges" who are usually practicing lawyers who volunteer to come in and help us out. Some groups were actually assigned "real" judges for their moots. Even though it wasn't worth too much in terms of our grades, most people still put a great deal of effort in preparing for them.  READ MORE

Judge Shadowing

Nadya Ogloff - Thursday, February 24, 2011

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity a to follow a justice of the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench (Alberta's court of superior jurisdiction) around for a day as part of their judge shadowing program. It was fun to talk to members of the judiciary outside the context of a courtroom and get some candid comments from them about their work as well as some career advice. Sometimes, especially as a first year law student, with all the judgments you read and the formalities of the courtroom you forget that judges are real people too. For the shadowing group that I was in the judge personally made us tea and coffee! As we walked along the corridors we recognized some of the names on the bronze nameplates next to the judges' offices from the cases we read. It was also a rare opportunity to hear stories about their own careers and explanations of various aspects of the justice system that I have not seen in any of our textbooks. We sat in on some trials and other proceedings and were treated to a soup and sandwich lunch. At the end of the day we got a tour of the courthouse, but many of us have been there before for Student Legal Services.   READ MORE

Giant Maps

Jonathan Ip - Monday, January 24, 2011

I hope everybody had a wonderful holiday season and are ready for a fun and energetic 2011! We were welcomed back to school with a barrage of marked midterms. I think most people are glad the exams were "failsafe" and would like another shot at them in April. It was definitely a learning curve to learn how to write these exams, and the profs have very high and sometimes mysterious expectations on how to do well.  READ MORE

Exam Time!

Jonathan Ip - Tuesday, December 21, 2010

It's nice to finally get a shot at writing law school exams, although I guess "nice" might not be the best way to describe it. For most of my courses, if you do better in the April final exams, then the December exams won't be used in the calculation of the final course grade. This is good because it gives people a chance to get a feel for how to write these types of exams. Pretty much all the exams feature a fact situation where you apply your knowledge from the cases you went over during the term to analyze the hypothetical scenario. It's amazing how many topics covered throughout the term can be crammed into these hypotheticals so time is a huge issue.   READ MORE

Visits From Judges

Jonathan Ip - Saturday, November 20, 2010

In October, the law school hosted a talk by Justice Thomas Cromwell of the Supreme Court of Canada. His topic was on "Sound Judgment: The Lawyer's Most Important Attribute." It was a speech sprinkled with humourous anecdotes and thoughts. For example, he joked, and I paraphrase, that it is important to have four friends on the Supreme Court otherwise the job as a judge in the highest Canadian Court is "just literature". For those who don't know, it takes at least five judges to have a majority judgment on the Supreme Court of Canada. It was pretty neat to hear somebody who writes some of the judgments for the cases you read in school, and you try to sort of draw comparisons between how and what they talk about to the things they write for the Court.  READ MORE

WestLaw: PubMed for Lawyers

Jonathan Ip - Monday, October 25, 2010

The craziness of September has finally slowed down somewhat and now I can actually get caught up on my readings! It's nice to finally get settled into a rhythm without a ton of distractions taking my attention away from school...but then again, I'm now writing on my blog instead of reading! I'm volunteering with the criminal law project of Student Legal Services and within a month I already got my first real case.   READ MORE

The first few weeks of Law School

Jonathan Ip - Thursday, September 23, 2010

Hello everybody and welcome to my blog! I'm currently a first-year law student at the University of Alberta and I've been an Events Liaison for SBN since the summer of 2009. Being a member of SBN has been a rewarding experience for me personally and professionally. I look forward to getting involved behind the scenes again this year while working with some really great people who are passionate about biotechnology.  READ MORE

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