We’re thrilled to welcome current student Jillian LeBlanc to the blog with this great note on what brought her to the Certificate and her experiences to date. If you’d like to share your thoughts on the program, for this space or otherwise, please drop us a line: lawcertificate@queensu.ca.

If you are on this page, you may be  interested in a career in the legal profession now, or in the near future. If so, you are probably weighing the enormous decision to attend law school in the back of your mind. As a working professional a few years out of her undergrad with an interest in studying law, I was and still am one of those people.

The legal profession was not part of my familial upbringing on the North Coast of British Columbia, however, my continued interest in all things legal and justice related has only continued to blossom from my youth into adulthood. As I have mentioned previously, deciding to invest my time and resources into law school in hopes of entering the world of law, without much formal exposure to the profession did not seem to me like the best idea. What if I didn’t enjoy my courses, what if I didn’t understand the material, and what I couldn’t find a type of law suited to my interests?

Enter my decision to take the Queen’s Certificate in Law.I had originally enrolled in the ‘interest’ two-course option (ever the cautious optimist) with the intention to complete the Certificate should I feel confident enough in my abilities after the first two courses. Although I appreciate the amount of courses that are being offered in this certificate, I felt slightly overwhelmed by all the choices. I was pleased to see that there was an Introduction to Canadian Law course and decided to start there. In that course we learned about everything from the role of international treaties, to what is an employee really, to patenting a mouse. Taking that first intro course last fall has not only shown me what type of law gets me excited (I actually enjoy contracts #whoknew), but it has also opened my eyes to how law fits into the fabric of our society, and how its role shapes our daily decisions.

Fast forward to today. I completed the Public and Constitutional Law final exam earlier this week and have asked to be moved from the ‘interest’ category to the full Certificate category, so that I can complete two more courses. Although I will be taking a break over the summer, I am highly anticipating my return to my third course in International Law in the fall. While I am not sure what my fourth and final course will be, I know that my participation in this course has helped shape my decision to attend law school in the future and in the interim has made me a more confident and aware person.

Even if you think you know exactly what you wanted to take in this program, or consequently, completely unsure of what you want to take in this program, I would highly encourage you to take the intro course. You will definitely learn something about the law and maybe even something about yourself.