Setting the Bar

by Julia Cardi

The work of three years of law school and months of studying culminated early in the morning July 25 for 737 hopefuls at Colorado’s bar exam. The two-day test began at 9 a.m., but those taking it began arriving before 6:15 at the Denver Merchandise Mart. They scattered around the building’s perimeter for last-minute cramming or socializing.

Recent law school graduates said they’d been studying all summer.

“The summer, plus three years,” said Patrick Sweet, who graduated from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law this spring. “I treat it like a job, like at least 40 hours a week. But you treat it like a law job, so it’s really like 50, 60 hours a week.”

Graduates’ individual apprehensions about the test varied. Sarah Roisman, who just finished at DU, said the uncertainty of the content worried her most. Jim Murray, a University of Colorado Law School graduate, said he was nervous because the exam’s closed-book format differs from any of the tests he took in law school.

To read this story and other complete articles featured in the July 31, 2017 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online.