Monday, July 25, 2011
I have reached the point in the summer when I feel myself sliding on the downward slope to a new academic year. Every summer I feel a twinge of regret as I realize the weeks are rapidly passing. Every summer I feel a glimmer of anticipation as I think of the new first-year class.
In mid-May the summer seems to stretch endlessly and invitingly in front of me. Project time beckons. Administrative clean-up from the academic year occurs. I steal away for a couple of weeks of research time. The law school settles into a quiet routine with few students and faculty around, but bar studier diligently at work.
Remember as children when the golden days of summer seemed to last forever. At some point, we traded in those days for summer jobs at camps, fast food restaurants, and retail shops. Later, if we were lucky, those jobs morphed into internships or quasi-useful duties related to career goals as we went through college. In law school, summer clerkships and study abroad replaced our prior summer pursuits. As we entered practice or other law-related jobs, we discovered that summer was really not very different from the rest of the year.
At least as an administrator in legal education, I get a few weeks to catch my breath. However, now that I am already in week two of our intensive summer entry program, I feel that those weeks were long ago. After another intensive two weeks of teaching, they will be only a fleeting memory. Add grading that extends into orientation week, and I will find myself squarely back at the start of classes.
The enthusiasm of first-year students and the summer tales of returning upper-division students will sweep me up into the new academic year. Before I know it, I'll forget all about those mid-May and mid-July feelings - until next year.
Enjoy the remainder of your summer! (Amy Jarmon)