The incoming class of 2018 at IU Maurer prepares to take the professionalism oath. (Photo courtesy Indiana University Maurer School of Law) Kaelyne Yumul Wietelman remembers being a bundle of nerves during orientation at Indiana University Maurer School of Law.

Just arrived from Texas in 2016, Wietelman was following in the footsteps of her grandfather, who had been an attorney in the Philippines, realizing her dream and her father’s dream of studying the law. The final day of orientation, Wietelman put on her professional clothes and joined the other first-year students for the Oath of Professionalism Ceremony.

She was still nervous, having to correct herself as to which was her right hand, but at that event in Baier Hall, she learned the responsibility and honor that comes with being a lawyer.

Everyone in the “whole room felt very excited and proud to be there,” Wietelman said.

As another academic year begins at Indiana’s law schools, 1L students are brought on the campuses a few days before classes begin to learn the practical things they’ll need to know. Setting their schedules, getting their student IDs, finding the library and meeting their classmates are among the tasks they accomplish. 1L students at IU McKinney sort donated food items. (Photo courtesy IU McKinney school of Law) In addition to providing the nuts and bolts of legal studies, the schools also program something extra in the orientation to, as Wietelman found out, emphasize to the students that they are entering a unique profession. IU Maurer has the oath ceremony, while Notre Dame Law School provides an opportunity for the incoming students to volunteer for part of a day at a local charity. Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law engages in both a professional oath ceremony and a service activity.

IU McKinney dean Andrew Klein said the extra functions tell the students, even though they are just beginning, that as lawyers, they will be expected to meet a heightened standard of responsibility, ethics and public service.

“It sounds like I’m making a cliché, but really, lawyers uphold the system of law that forms the fabric of society,” Klein […]

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