My 1L Experience with the Beyond the A Panel

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I’m not someone who typically struggles with anxiety, nor am I someone people would typically think struggles with anxiety. And to be honest, I think even if you asked me, I would say that I don’t – that was, until I experienced the first year of law school and the drain on mental health law school had on my peers.

Attending the Beyond the A panel was one of my most positive experiences during law school. The sincerity and vulnerability of the speakers was real, raw and refreshing. Hearing from practicing lawyers who have overcome their struggles in dealing with anxiety from the stress and pressure for performance in the legal field was an honest look at some of the darker, and often unspoken, parts of the profession. Their decisions to encourage balance in their lives, prioritize mental health and maintain their work ethic were done with strength and bravery, and often required some soul searching. 

Opening up the conversation about mental health within the law profession is an important initiative that needs to happen to encourage sustainable futures for students like me, who are just entering into their careers in the law. It helps us create realistic expectations and makes us ask difficult questions early on. I think initiatives like these are important for future lawyers to thrive and for the upcoming generation to create positive change in their workplaces.

UBC 2L, Beyond the A Panel Attendee

Steven Ngo