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Welcome from Student Bar Association President Brian Park

Brian ParkIt is my great privilege to congratulate you on your decision to join the Class of 2017 at the University of Virginia School of Law. The Student Bar Association (SBA) is the student government of the Law School, entrusted with improving the law school experience for current and future students. On behalf of the SBA, I would like to briefly introduce you to our wonderful community and give you a small glimpse into some of what you have to look forward to in a few short months. Charlottesville is a wonderful place to call home for three years, and our Law School community sincerely encourages its students to enjoy their time here. I think you will find the atmosphere to be both welcoming and encouraging as you begin the path to becoming a lawyer.

One of the most distinctive characteristics of Virginia Law is the strong sense of community that infuses everything we do. I know that in the months leading up to law school, I spent a great deal of time wondering whether I would be able to manage the fabled cutthroat nature of law school.  Similarly, I dreaded the prospect of spending countless weekends locked up in the library just trying to keep up with my classes. Finally, I grew worried that the competitive nature of law school would lead to a hostile atmosphere of students trying to outshine one another.

I quickly realized that these fearful scenarios could not be further from the truth when it comes to the reality of life at Virginia. Students here learn cooperatively by discussing their thoughts and perspectives in and away from the classroom. Furthermore, our students are always willing to share notes with their classmates who may have missed a lecture. At Virginia, we maintain the perspective that our classmates are friends first. While we learn together, we also relax, play softball and live life together as a community of friends. I believe this defining attitude is unique to Virginia law students and is a major reason our alumni are so successful after graduation. 

UVA Law students encompass a wide range of diverse backgrounds and are extremely driven and engaged. We have around 70 student organizations that sponsor activities, speakers, symposia and gatherings. If you have an interest, a passion, or an idea for an organization, there is a good chance that it exists here at the Law School. If it does not, you will find classmates who will be eager to bring it into existence with you. During your three years here, you will meet incredible people who share your interests and passions. More importantly, these peers will become life-long friends. 

At Virginia Law, you will have the opportunity to take classes from some of the finest legal scholars in the country. Equally important, you will have countless opportunities to interact with these professors outside of class. You will go out to lunch with them, talk to them in the hallways and their offices, and be invited to their homes for dinner, wine-tastings and poker games.

I could go on and on describing the virtues of Virginia Law, but I will resist such temptations and allow you to arrive at your own conclusions next fall. While every student's path at Virginia Law is unique, I know that each of you will have an incredible experience over the next three years. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at I wish you the very best of luck. Welcome to Virginia! Wahoowa!

Yours for Virginia,

Brian Park

President, Student Bar Association


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