I am very pleased to welcome you, our new class of JD and LLM students, to a community of learning that will change your lives. You have worked hard to get here and we chose you because we believe you will thrive at UConn School of Law.
In the months and years ahead, you will learn from a brilliant faculty and share your hopes, joys, and toil with classmates who will be a part of your lives for the rest of your careers.
UConn Law School is not only the best public law school in the Northeast, it is a welcoming and supportive community. We are a launching pad from which you can pursue any of an incredible range of careers.
The legal market of the future is different from that of the past. Legal jobs are abound, but they are highly differentiated. Success will come soonest to those of you who find in yourselves a skill and strength, and find out- side yourselves a working environment that resonates with your character and your goals. Initiative and self-knowledge will be your most valuable attributes.
The job market you will face demands more than it did in years past. An acute analytical mind and superb communication skills are as important as ever. But, clients and employers are now looking for more. They do not want lawyers who talk like lawyers; they want lawyers who think like clients, but bring legal tools to solve their problems. Your challenge will be not only to make these tools part of your way of thinking, but also to adopt an outward focus that will enable you to understand and connect with others. Fortunately, you are at a law school that recognizes these necessities and provides a myriad of ways to develop your professional character.
Your first semester will be hard work—I am sure everyone has told you that, and they are right. There is no magic path; your learning here will not be like any you have done before. Your keys will be steady, disciplined study and engagement in every class and every discussion. Like mastering a performance skill, there is no alternative to practice and hard work.
But you also need to have fun. You are lucky to be at a law school that values a sense of community. UConn Law is an extremely warm and welcoming environment; everyone here wants you to succeed. You will have countless opportunities to build friendships and relation- ships with your classmates and your professors, as well as our staff and broader network of alumni and employers, both locally and abroad.
UConn Law School has a long tradition of international study and placement. In this increasingly connected world, this campus will provide you countless opportunities to meet and work with students from around the globe. You will learn the perspectives of other educational systems and cultures—and be wiser for it—while planting the seeds for your own networks of multinational colleagues.
UConn Law School will be your base as your prepare for a new career. The paths ahead are as many as there are students among you. Whether your skills lie in transactions or dispute resolution, whether your focus will be business or policy, you will find both training and kindred spirits at this school.
We look forward with excitement to your time with us, and anticipate our pride in seeing you emerge from this wonderful school as complete professionals, ready for the great opportunities ahead.