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  • Writer's pictureThe Moot Times UCalgary Law

Editor’s Note: [W]rite of Passage

By Heidi J. T. Exner, CFE

The dog days of summer are upon us! Though I complain about the oppressive heat and thickness of the air this time of year, the truth is that I friggin’ love it. I live for these days. I was born in the middle of a heatwave, and I have always felt rejuvenated from the sun’s rays. This year, however, I find myself more attracted to water alongside the heat than ever before. Instead of drifting off in fantasies of hiking on dry rocks or stretching out in golden fields, ideas like getting a flamingo-shaped kid pool (zero apologies!) for my townhouse patio or spending the day on a lake are revving my engine. I have no idea where this attraction to water is coming from. Maybe I am just a bit more relaxed now than I have been in years, and the balance of heat and cool water is a manifestation of that. No doubt there’s a “baptism” metaphor in this as well, though I am not religious.

Speaking of religious metaphors, this issue is also the physical marker for a “rite of passage” of sorts. Though I am not leaving entirely, my leadership of The Moot Times is ending. My final year as a student only consists of a handful of MBA classes and one law class (3L Advocacy, in January), so I will no longer be part of Murray Fraser Hall’s daily goings on. I am turning my focus more fully to off-campus endeavours and preparing for my post-JD/MBA career, whatever that might be.

It dawned on me this summer that I have been a major contributor to this publication throughout my entire law school journey. I have been the head honcho of this ‘zine for over two years now, which is not a typical stretch of leadership for a student club. This is not because I’m some drooling, power-mad autocrat, but rather because the revamp of our publication took a lot of work. It was not fair for me to expect another law student to take the reins until everything behind the scenes was streamlined and accessible for takeover, which is not as simple as it sounds. We did it, though! I am excited to say that the time has arrived: our 2022-2023 year shall be co-led by two amazing new Editors-in-Chief!

Anyone who runs orgs, and especially anyone who deals with publishing, might understand the chaos that transpires behind the scenes when they are ambitious (foolish?) enough to plan massive restructures to be led and executed by volunteers. Now, imagine pulling off this undertaking with volunteers who are law students – a subset of the general population that is notorious for being overworked! The Moot Times’ revamp was no small feat, and this speaks volumes about the group of students who made it possible. I say this often, but it truly cannot be said enough: we have one heck of a great team!

I like to think that the revamp set the stage for operating on a continuum, whereupon inertia is one extreme and revolution is the other. Perhaps, and ideally, this means it can reflect the constant evolution of the thoughts and interests of my current peers and future law students. Each issue has strived for all facets of improvement, and a key metric for improved content is the diversity of voices and interests we can include.

In this issue we have a wonderful array of guest contributions. Some of them will be familiar to you (notably, Dean Holloway and other friendly faculty), and some are not. We have contributions from two Sarahs, neither of which are lawyers! I absolutely love that we are able to provide a platform for them to connect with Murray Fraser Hall through our ‘zine, because their contributions are important. You might not have considered this yet, but throughout your legal careers you will encounter clients and other non-lawyer professionals who you will work alongside. Trust me, you’ll want to understand their perspectives. If you can diversify the voices in your life to include sciences, humanities, business, and everything else under the sun, then you will be a better lawyer (and a better human) for it. Life itself is an interdisciplinary art. When information and understanding can flow freely among a variety of different parties, this is when we reduce the amount of “error” in trial-and-error approaches – which is an approach to solution-building you will find in abundance in your careers. Furthermore, we can increase innovation, foster true teamwork, and achieve countless other personal and professional successes. But I digress. My point is that I strongly encourage you to keep your personal and professional circles open and inclusive to parties outside of the legal profession. This is my parting advice to you as a pretty-much-finished quasi-3L.

This feels so strange. Please excuse my sappy tears and understand that they are tears of joy (and a bit of nostalgia). Take flight, my friends! I’m rooting for you all the way!!

- Heidi

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