November 14, 2018 Articles

How Mentorships Can Improve Mental Health for Young Lawyers

Vanderbilt Law School is ensuring that students graduate not only with a JD but also with a support system.

By Ryan McKenney

Law school is difficult, and the process of learning to “think like a lawyer” can, for many, feel like one long set of mental gymnastics. Finding time to make friends and maintain a somewhat normal sleep and social schedule can be difficult, especially in the first year of law school, when doctrinal law and legal research and writing are the focus in the lecture hall.

The concept of mental health looms large in every aspect of life, and it is no wonder why that is the case. From celebrity culture to the politics of higher education, from social media to school shootings and constant connectivity, life as a young person in America has arguably never been more stressful to navigate. For law students, too, stress is a major factor. Certainly, the time between undergraduate schooling and law practice is already a crossroads, and mental health and wellness initiatives have never been more important.

At Vanderbilt Law School, the administration, students, and staff are working to improve the mental health and wellness of the student body, ensuring that students graduate not only with a JD but also with a support system.

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