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ALS ORSEM 2016: To the Stars

THE Freshmen Orientation Seminar (OrSem) is an annual event organized by incoming sophomores to help the incoming first years be prepared for what is in store for them in the Ateneo Law School (ALS).

This year, the name and theme of the OrSem is “Ad Astra.” The term came from the Latin phrase per aspera ad astra, which means “through hardships to the stars.”

The first day of the OrSem was filled with messages and talks aimed at inspiring the freshmen to do their best and stand out in school. The speakers were Dean Sedfrey Candelaria, Dean Cesar Villanueva, Dr. Ivy Patdu and Atty. Paola Alvarez. Atty. Ryan Quan enlightened the freshmen with the new addition to the JD Program—the track system. After this, each block had their own classroom sessions with their respective Talk and Tour representatives (TNT’s). The first day ended with a mass.

The second day started with talks from bar topnotchers, Atty. Timothy Lumauig, Atty. Dianna Wilwayco, and Atty. Pedro Bernardo, wherein the students were taught to study hard and study smart, and were motivated to not just survive, but excel during their stay in law school, and of course, in the bar examinations.

To show that Atenean lawyers are not just always studying but are also very well-rounded, the first years were provided with time to choose and join the different student organizations based in the ALS. They were also toured around the school to acquaint them with the school’s facilities and premises. Thereafter, they were given an hour to study in the library for the mock recitations. The mock recitations were conducted to let them experience firsthand how the Socratic method is done in law school.

For the first part of day three, the students had a mentoring session specially arranged by Atty. Lala Rosales. The freshmen were divided into small groups and each group was assigned to a prominent and accomplished lawyer who guided them and addressed their questions and concerns.

This year’s OrSem concluded with the OrSem Night, where all blocks had to choose two representatives for Mr. and Ms. OrSem. To foster camaraderie and unity within the block, they were also tasked to prepare a block cheer. After a fashion show, talent portion and question and answer portion, the representatives from block B emerged as OrSem 2016 Mr. and Ms. Orsem.

With this, Orsem 2016: Ad Astra comes to a close. However, for the freshmen, this is only the beginning; and even though a lot of hardships may come their way, they should be reminded that the darkest nights produce the brightest stars. P

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