LIFE @ NUJS, or knowing where your towel is!

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{Kashmira Majumdar is a third year student at the WBNUJS , Kolkata. An old friend of mine, she has very generously agreed to contribute an article. She writes about life and times at her law school. I find her take mostly similar to my experience at NALSAR barring the few things specific to Calcutta (Park Street, etc. — something I sorely miss !!!) Kashmira is adept at sarcasm and her intellectualism and wit is famous amongst her friends. You have read about life at NALSAR so I thought it would do you some good to know about how things are at another leading law school. So here you go!!! — Sandipan De.}

Anyone who says they aren’t nervous about their first day of college for the very first time, either has no nerves to begin with, or is lying. It’s a big change and a bigger step forward, being expelled from the comfortable routine of school and thrust into a world you probably know nothing about. You want to be prepared for it, you want to know everything about the college you’re going to. You want to be told that it’s a magical rollercoaster ride that takes you through twists and turns, giving you the biggest adrenaline rush of your life and when you get off at the end of five years, a good job and a fat paycheque will be waiting for you.

Going to NUJS, like attending law school, is more like a rollercoaster than you think. First, you have to find it. You see it towering in the distance, an imposing superstructure of fun and thrilling screams, but you still need to navigate through the amusement park, pick your way to where it is, and get your ticket. This is the hardest part. Mentally prepping yourself to sit for CLAT, wondering if your results will get you to the college you want to go to, and then waiting for your turn in the line.

Once you’ve found a seat on that rollercoaster, make sure you buckle in well because this is one ride where you don’t want to fall off. You’re adjusting to hostel life, to getting up far too early to beat the rush to the showers, or oversleeping only to discover there’s no time to eat breakfast before attending class. Coursework seems like a manageable load on your back. You have time to laze around all day, take the next bus to Mani Square, the mall next door, or squeeze into a cab with your new friends, headed to Park Street, the land of food, dancing, and shopping sprees. Sometimes, you have to pull all-nighters to do the next day’s assigned reading, and you breeze into class. The rollercoaster creeps further uphill.

You meet your seniors, night in and night out. There are politer words for what these meetings are called, but you’re surprised how it really does forge useful bonds for the future. Who else is going to lend you old papers and hand-me-down textbooks, the margins of which are filled with useful notations? Who else is going to take your case, sitting in smiling, predatory groups while conducting your entrance interview to various official societies? But if you survive your trial through fire, you won’t regret a thing once you’re on the other side.

The rollercoaster is picking up speed under you. You have your extra-curricular fun, you have fests and the Caclutta Times Fresh Face pageant to look forward to, and the most stressful thing you’ve done so far is try out for the college moot team. You’ve been so busy and sleep-deprived you walk into your Law of Contracts class, book in your bag, having forgotten to read the day’s cases. You feel the rollercoaster dip down the bend.

When dealing with your new faculty, you must know one thing: your teacher is either likely to ignore your tardiness, knowing it will come and bite you in the rear later, or your teacher will throw you out of class for it. Discipline doesn’t mean the old school dictum of finger-on-your-lips silence. Discipline has a new-age adult-world meaning: will power. The internal power to will yourself to balance both studies and having fun.

And it’s the hardest balance you will ever have to strike. You’re sitting on your bed, in your hostel room, books open on your lap. You’ve convinced yourself that you ought to study, given how you’ve barely done that since your first month here. The door bangs open, and your roommate walks in. Within minutes, you’ve been persuaded to wait until the last week before the exams to do this. Instead, you find yourself with your friends at the shack behind your college, eating cheese Maggi and blowing off steam.

Freshers’ night, the first time you go back home since you joined college, (which may or may or may not coincide with official holidays) and the first internship are only a few of many landmarks of the beginning of your NUJS career. Enjoy them while they last, because now the rollercoaster is no longer dipping down to come up again. No, come December, the metal car you’re sitting in is doing 360ΒΊ loops, and it’s all you can do to hold on. The horror and agony of exam prep is the one thing about student life that never changes.

When the last bell rings, and the pen falls from your cramping hand, it’s hard to believe it’s over. The first semester is over and it just flew by. Your bed back at home is beckoning and exam results and new friends become old are waiting for you on the other side of the holidays. The rollercoaster has stilled, through the blood is still rushing in your ears.

Once law school has sunk its teeth into you, it’s hard to want to leave. It’s like standing on the ground at night, watching drunken boys dare each other to leap over the water tank on their hostel roof. The first step, the first jump seems impossible, but in that split-second of being airborne, you feel like you’re flying.

Kashmira Majumder
WBNUJS, Kolkata.

35 COMMENTS

  1. exceptionally well written. the roller coaster ride analogy is brilliant! she’s stays true to it the whole way. *applause,applause* πŸ™‚

  2. hey.. hi kashmira..nice to finally hear from you here after the lmc mun… anyway yeah i totally get what you are saying.. (i’m in NLUO myself).. lol…cya in some moot in the future probably…cheerio!!

  3. I think all law schools have a similar routine and life. It’s the ambience and exciting thing about NALSAR which gives us a brilliant forum here to excel in wide gamuts of activities. NUJS, the law school in my hometown, is no different.

    • abhinav ji… its may nw…..
      u r so confident abt going into nujs dats gud……………..
      fir hamari dukanoin ka kya hoga??

  4. Chanced upon it by accident. Glad that I did. Nice work! The one thing that you still haven’t had an experience of is NUJS Night and it is something you will look forward to each year once you have had a taste of it πŸ™‚

    • Naman- you have no idea how bummed i was to miss it! πŸ™ and yes, everybody kept talking about how awesome it was all week afterwards lol

  5. thank you for the amazing feedback, everybody πŸ˜€ every law school is different because the city and the environment it fosters, but you always come out a better person at the end of it. If you’ve chosen it, you nearly always love it.

  6. Like Β I needed another reason to love NUJS.
    I stand on the other side of the wall(with the cheese maggi) with the hope of being able to experience the things you write about. πŸ™‚
    oh;not that I need to state the obvious;your article is Brilliant. πŸ˜€

  7. This article helped me so much.
    Everytime I was disheartened over bad mocks, or too tired to read through current affairs, or just plain hopeless.Β 
    This article made me want to work harder than ever, and get into this college. I haven’t been there, and I love the place already. πŸ™‚
    So thankyou, for inspiring and encouraging me.

    NUJS Kolkata, here I come. πŸ™‚Β 

  8. Could you give some more info about the hostel and general environment in and around the campus? Things like, is the hostel old/ new, how many girls in a room, is the campus in the city, how is it from safety point of view.

  9. Could u pls tell us the minimum cut off marks for clat 2013 for admission to wbnujs? It would be quite helpfull. And also some coaching centre in kolkata if I don’t get a satisfactory rank for qualifying in wbnujs…Pls and also R.S.P.V

  10. This article helped me so much.
    Everytime I was disheartened over bad mocks, or too tired to read through current affairs, or just plain hopeless.Β 
    This article made me want to work harder than ever, and get into this college. I haven’t been there, and I love the place already. πŸ™‚
    So thankyou, for inspiring and encouraging me.
    NUJS Kolkata, here I come. πŸ™‚Β 

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