I had the same band director from middle school through my first two years of college at a community college. It was a happy arrangement where he taught at my middle/high school and at the community college where I started. Sometimes I look around, startled that I am here in law school, a place I didn’t contemplate coming to until after I graduated from college. When I think back to how I got here, I am always amused at what prepared me most for law school. My seventh grade study skills class taught me how to type and how to at least appear to be paying attention in class. Eighth grade Latin taught me how to memorize rules and terms. My undergraduate education in Classical Languages taught me rhetoric. It also taught me how to memorize whole books of Latin in about a week, which turned out to be an invaluable skill when I comes to Law School finals. Dabbling in basically every department at my undergraduate institution taught me to look for intersectionality at every turn. I am indebted to my past education for my current successes. And yet, the teachings that have served me the best come from my band director. My band director was man with a presence as imposing as his frame. I remember vividly being an eighth grader and watching a seventh grader walk away from my director when he was in mid-sentence. My jaw fell to floor. He had taught us well to respect authority. From band I also learned, that if you mess up keep going. I try to remember that during moot court or when I foul up a question in class. I messed up, but I always need to keep going. After being under the stage lights enough times, my fear of public speaking has disappeared. That confidence has served me well whenever I have to speak in front of more than five people, which happens fairly frequently. The most important lessen however was the 6 Ps: Proper, prior planning prevents poor performances. He would remind us of those Ps before performances and tests, but it has applied much more broadly in my life. Before my oral arguments at the end of my 1L year as I sat practicing my prepared arguments for hundredth time or so, I took a deep breath to steel my confidence and reminded myself that my preparation and planning should prevent poor performance. It worked, and I received the extra credit for being properly prepared. The 6 Ps don’t apply just apply to actual performances, but to all of the little performances required for law students. Meeting with the admission officer? Prepare your questions ahead of time, so you don’t flounder or forget. Meeting with a professor about a test? Review your test and have questions ready. Moot court arguments tomorrow? Practice, practice, practice and have your professional attire laid out. Class tomorrow? Read and brief, so you can answer any questions thrown your way. Busy week ahead? Plan it all out in advance, so you don’t get overwhelmed. The broader point of all of this is to say that you never know what has prepared you most for law school. That’s also one of the more interesting parts of law school. We all come from different places and have different strengths. We all bring something different to law school. It’s easy to forget that your past has prepared you for law school, and that you won’t know what has prepared you best for this rather crazy journey until you start. Don’t forget where you came from when you get here. You will, of course, have to make changes and adapt, but law school is not the ground zero of your education. Bring your experiences and your strengths and exploit them in this new environment, adapt when you need to and always be confident.