June 04, 2018

Resources for Law Students and Law Schools

Featured Resources
 

AUDIO: Law Students Challenge Need for Mental Health Question (Radio IQ, April 24, 2018)
 

Recap of Law Student Wellness Twitter Chat on National Mental Health Day for Law Schools (March 28, 2018)
 

New Path to Law Student Well-Being Podcast Series: Episode 1, part 1 discusses ways individual faculty members can notice, engage with, and support students they suspect are in distress. Episode 1, part 2 discusses steps faculty can take to promote student well-being through their teaching in the classroom and includes concrete actions for law school administrators.
 

Recommendations for Law Schools, from The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Change, by the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being


ABA Student Lawyer Magazine dedicated to Wellness and How to Deal with Law School Stress (ABA Law Student Division, March/April/May 2018)


The Key to Law Student Well-Being? We Have to Love Our Law Students, by David B. Jaffe, National Association for Law Placement PD Quarterly (February 2018)


The Elephant in the Room: The Legal Profession, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse (recording of live Stanford Law School program that took place on Feb. 8, 2018)
 

Law school stress: It’s not about you, and it’s all about you, by Jeff Fortgang and Shawn Healy (Before the Bar Blog, ABA Law Student Division, Feb. 27, 2018)


Substance Abuse and Mental Health Toolkit for Law Students and Those Who Care About Them, a collaborative effort of CoLAP, the ABA Law Student Division, and the Dave Nee Foundation.
 

To law students preparing for the bar exam...


...here is some advice and words of encouragement from lawyer assistance programs.

The lawyer assistance programs (LAPs) have pulled together some tips, words of encouragement and resources for you during this stressful time.


LAPs provide confidential services and support to law students, lawyers and judges who are facing substance use or mental health issues.


If you or someone you know needs assistance, contact your state or local LAP.

 

Law Student Listserv


CoLAP maintains a confidential listserv for recovering law students. If you are interested in joining this group, contact Niki Irish at nirish@dcbar.org

 

New Voices of Recovery Podcast Series
 

CoLAP has produced a new podcast series about overcoming substance use disorders, mental health issues and addiction. The lawyers featured in this series have all agreed to tell their story in the hope that it will reduce the stigma surrounding these issues and encourage others to get the help they need.

"The Besden Redemption" Video

 

The CoLAP Law School Assistance Committee set out to create a video that law students can relate to. That will encourage those who are reluctant to seek help for substance use disorders or mental health issues to take the first step. That will make those who think, "It can't happen to me," realize that it can happen to anybody. 

Laurie Besden is an attorney and the Executive Director of Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers of Pennsylvania. Laurie had a privileged upbringing. She graduated college with a 3.97 GPA, and was in the top 15% of her law school class. On paper, Laurie is the definition of success. Laurie is also a drug addict... In "The Besden Redemption," Laurie candidly shares her story of crippling addiction, and ultimately, redemption. 

Presented by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs and Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. 

Click here for the full version as well as an abridged, 3-minute version.

 



New Path to Law Student Well-being Podcast Series


"The Path to Law Student Well-Being" is a new podcast series sponsored by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs and Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar. The series is a response to the call for action in the 2017 Report, The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Changefrom the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being, which sets out action items for the legal community, including specific steps law schools can take, to shift the culture of the legal profession towards one that is focused on well-being. 
 

The inaugural 2-part episode features two short conversations with Dean and Professor of Law Michael Hunter Schwartz of the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law and Professor Larry Krieger of the Florida State University College of Law and is moderated by Professor Susan Wawrose of the University of Dayton School of Law.


Dean Schwartz is a recognized expert and the author of numerous books and articles on the subject of law student teaching and learning, including his book, What the Best Law Teachers Do. He has also been ranked for the past three years in a row by National Jurist magazine as one of the most influential legal educators.


Professor Krieger is well-known for his groundbreaking work on law student well-being, including how values and motivation affect law student and lawyer satisfaction and the role law schools play in shaping law student values and in humanizing the profession. He has also has done significant research measuring the psychological changes of law students during law school. 

 

Part 1: Listen | Download
Ways individual faculty members can notice, engage with, and support students they suspect are in distress.
 

Part 2: Listen | Download
Steps faculty can take to promote student well-being through their teaching in the classroom and includes concrete actions for law school administrators. 

Research and Reports


Suffering in Silence: The Survey of Law Student Well-Being and the Reluctance of Law Students to Seek Help for Substance Use and Mental Health Concerns
, by: Jerome M. Organ, David B. Jaffe, and Katherine M. Bender, Ph.D.


In the spring of 2014, fifteen law schools around the country participated in the Survey of Law Student Well-Being (SLSWB). A comprehensive report of the findings is now available in the Autumn 2016 issue of the Journal of Legal Education.


The study was administered with a grant from the ABA Enterprise Fund, sponsored by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs, Law Student Division, Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division, Young Lawyers Division and Commission on Disability Rights, as well as with support from the Dave Nee Foundation.  


Helping Law Students Get the Help They Need: An Analysis of Data Regarding Law Students’ Reluctance to Seek Help and Policy Recommendations for a Variety of Stakeholders, by: Jerome M. Organ, David B. Jaffe, and Katherine M. Bender, Ph.D.


This Bar Examiner article, released prior to the full report above, previews results from the Survey of Law Student Well-Being. 

Articles

 

Lee Burgess, Dealing with Bar Exam Stress and Anxiety, Ms. JD (January 26, 2016)
 

Amanda H. Chan, Amanda M. Lee and Adam P. Savitt, Wellness at the the Law School: Promises to Keep and Miles to Go Before We Sleep, The Harvard Crimson (March 28, 2018)

Jenna Cho, 10 Tips for Those Delirious from Bar Exam Prep, Above the Law (July 27, 2015)

Olivia Covington, Young attorneys, law students prone to mental health issues, The Indiana Lawyer (January 25, 2017)


Brian Cuban, The Addicted Lawyer: The Alcoholic Law Student, Above the Law, (September 2016)


Brian Cuban, Staying 'Well' in Law School, Above the Law (August 9, 2017)


Brian Cuban, When Bar Examiners Become Mental Health Experts, Above the Law (January 10, 2018)


Ted Flett, Are we doing enough to optimize the student body’s mental health? Canadian Lawyer (November 2015)

Josh Freda, Unpacking Mental Health, Virginia Law Weekly (September 2016)


Mary Campbell Gallagher, Eleven Tips for Reducing Stress and Studying Better in the Two Weeks Before the Bar Exam, Lawyerist.com (July 13, 2012)

Ema Garcia, A New Hope: Addressing the Mental Health Problems of Law Students, Student Lawyer (March 2008).


Amanda Griffin, Depression Dominates Legal Industry, Starting at Law School, JD Journal (September 16, 2017)


Candice Issac, Trainer advocates mindfulness for law students, USM Free Press (April 2016).


David Jaffe, Seeking Help for Substance Abuse Before the Bar Becomes a Bar, Bloomberg Law Reports: Student Edition (2011).

Amy L. Jarmon, Staying Calm During a Busy Time of the Semester, Student Lawyer (November 2008).

J. George Kaufman, Balanced for Success, Student Lawyer (September 2008).


Ariella Michal Medows, 1Ls, Prioritize Mental Health, The Harvard Law Record (August 31, 2017)


Angela Morris, As Law Students Enter Finals, Schools Find Ways to Help With the Stress, Texas Lawyer (December 1, 2017)


Angela Morris, Students From Elite Law Schools Vow to Combat Mental Health Suffering on Campuses, LAW.com (December 1, 2017)


Angela Morris, Tips to Help Stressed-Out Law Students Unclinch, Texas Lawyer (June 2017)


Jim Podgers, Endorsing Early Treatment: Conditional Bar Admissions Aims to Encourage Timely Help, ABA Journal (March 2008).


Laira Martin, A Sober Look at Addiction and Mental Health in Law School, The National Jurist (Spring 2016)


Justin Mattingly, Virginia law students push state panel to scrap mental health question on bar application, Richmond Times-Dispatch (April 6, 2018)


Alice Vagun, UW Law School looks to de-stigmatize mental illness among graduate students, The Badger Herald (December 6, 2016)


Inge Van der Cruysse, Van der Cruysse: What do Indiana law schools do for students in need? TheIndianaLawyer.com (July 12, 2017)
 

Stephanie Francis Ward, Law grad with criminal record can sit for state bar, Washington Supreme Court rules, ABA Journal (November 17, 2017)
 

Stephanie Francis Ward, Magna cum laude law grad, 7 years sober, led a charge for students' well-being, ABA Journal (May 31, 2018)

Debra Cassens Weiss, More than 25% of law students have had psychiatric and substance-use disorders; are they hiding it? ABA Journal (January 12, 2016)


In Focus: The Mental Health of Law Students, The National Law Journal Special Report (May 9, 2016) featuring:


The Struggle: A Series from Above the Law
Above the Law created a series called “The Struggle” which posts real stories, submitted through emails and messages, about law student experiences with substance use and mental health issues. Articles include:

Research and Reports


Suffering in Silence: The Survey of Law Student Well-Being and the Reluctance of Law Students to Seek Help for Substance Use and Mental Health Concerns
, by: Jerome M. Organ, David B. Jaffe, and Katherine M. Bender, Ph.D.


In the spring of 2014, fifteen law schools around the country participated in the Survey of Law Student Well-Being (SLSWB). A comprehensive report of the findings is now available in the Autumn 2016 issue of the Journal of Legal Education.


The study was administered with a grant from the ABA Enterprise Fund, sponsored by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs, Law Student Division, Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division, Young Lawyers Division and Commission on Disability Rights, as well as with support from the Dave Nee Foundation.  


Helping Law Students Get the Help They Need: An Analysis of Data Regarding Law Students’ Reluctance to Seek Help and Policy Recommendations for a Variety of Stakeholders, by: Jerome M. Organ, David B. Jaffe, and Katherine M. Bender, Ph.D.


This Bar Examiner article, released prior to the full report above, previews results from the Survey of Law Student Well-Being. 

Other Resources

 

Podcast: Law School and Depression (ABA Law Student Division)

Orientation Handout (St. Thomas School of Law and Minnesota Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers)

Are You Fit To Be a Lawyer Brochure (Law Student Working Group of the Minnesota State Bar Association Life & Law Committee)

Law School Peer Support Network Training Manual (Jessica Stahl, Ph.D., University of Minnesota)

READY RESOURCES: Ready Resources for Bumps in the Road (ABA GPSOLO May/June 2015)

Getting Healthy, Staying Healthy – Law Student Video: American University Washington College of Law produced a video that encourages law students to face substance abuse issues. To learn more, click here, or contact David Jaffe, Associate Dean.


Websites


ABA Law Student Division


Bar Exam Toolbox - Tools & Resources for Bar Exam Success


Dave Nee Foundation LawLifeline, a Project of the Jed Foundation and Dave Nee Foundation