Baby Lawyer and Pistol Enthusiastic

When I was asked to write an article for “Life in GED” after my participation to the France Pistol Shooting Championship, I did not know what I could say about it.

I could spend days discussing about my own discipline, as every passionate athlete, but it would not be of great interest for my fellow undergraduates.

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Cécile LESCARRET (GED2)

I would rather share what it has brought to my everyday life. Michel Cacheux, a wonderful coach and former member of the French national Shooting Team, once told me that to succeed a high-level athlete has to keep in mind five elements: Rules, Mental, Physical fitness, Strategy and Tactics.

I find this analysis quite alike the requirements a student should bear in mind for the finals. Everyone has to abide by the same rules in order to participate. Every athlete should be in the best shape possible (yes, even in pistol shooting I assure you) and in a positive and lucid mental state to perform. Moreover, an athlete needs to be strategic, knowing one’s strengths and weaknesses allows to have a lucid look on events occurring during a match and to fix what has to be fixed immediately. Finally, every athlete has little tricks that helps and reassures: drinking, munching, meditation… Every little tip providing some comfort may make all the difference in hard times.

But besides, being passionate is about having fun, push ambitions to the limits, always having faith and not being afraid to step back sometimes to reach the next level.

I am not the only passionate in the “Grande Ecole du Droit”, many of us have consuming passions. Some play music, some swim, some act, some even fight on a tatami! We all face the same joys, doubts and fears. We are all torn apart between our studies, our personal life and our passions.

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Elina ROUGEAU (GED2)

How do we manage to conciliate everything? I am going to tell you a secret… It is impossible! We do the best we can, but we are only humans after all. Sometimes, choices must be made. That means cancelling an event with friends to finish an assignment because you had to attend a training session before a competition. That means having to train at night or having to space the practice sessions and finding ways to compensate such as mental visualization. That means sacrifices.

But it is all worth it. More than a passion, after 8 years of practice, pistol shooting has become a genuine necessity. Trainings evacuate stress and competitions provide thrilling sensations but above all, the people I have met have contributed in the making of the person I am today.

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Claire Emeline AUDUC (GED1)

Through this article, I want to urge readers to believe in their dreams, no matter how hard it can be, as the song says, “ain’t no mountain high enough”.

Cécile LESCARRET

My First Semester – Rose Pommeray

My name is Rose and I started at the Grande Ecole du Droit last fall. Before university, I lived in Oslo, Norway and at the end of high school I had no idea of what I wanted to do. It was very complicated to find information as I couldn’t visit the universities, go to conferences, I didn’t even have a guidance counsellor… I knew I wanted to study law, but I was looking for something a little more specific so I started looking on internet and on APB for a selective university course. For a long time, I planned entering a “classe préparatoire”, a double diploma in law and economy, law and philosophy, law and just something else… I ended up finding the Grande Ecole du Droit. I sent my application and got in after an oral examination through Skype with Pr. Magnier. I passed my baccalauréat and left Oslo at the end of June.

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©Audrey Ailloud/Elina Rougeau

University is a thousand miles from high school. In Oslo, we were 16 in my class and I arrived in September in an amphitheater full of people. Among other things, it changes the relationship you have with the teacher: I used to ask questions as soon as I didn’t understand something, the rhythm of the course was adapted to us… In a university course, you take notes, you can eventually ask a question during one of the two 10 minutes’ breaks but it stays very anonymous. I was quite frustrated about it at first, but the courses were so interesting and the teachers so good that I accepted it fast, but I was still very happy to start the Grande Ecole du Droit courses. As a selective diploma, we are only 30 to follow each Grande Ecole du Droit course and I enjoyed being in a class and interacting again with a teacher. Our American Law course for example is organized like a course in an American university: the teacher presents a topic and asks questions about it that we answer all together. Of course, you need to prepare the topic before going to class: University gives you a lot of autonomy, which is good but also very demanding. I have learned a lot these past few months and grown tremendously as a person. It takes a lot of organizing and responsibility to succeed at university. The Grande Ecole du Droit helped and helps me with this complicated aspect of university through the personal support we get from the older students (second and third year students). A tutoring system is set up each year when new students attend the Grande Ecole du Droit and we all get a tutor to whom we can ask specific questions about anything we struggle with in our studies. Second year students also offer to organise coaching sessions on methodology and different subjects first year students struggle with. This whole system is very reassuring and made the transition from high school far easier that it would have been if I had attended only a classic “licence de droit”.

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©Christophe Rabinovici

University is an infinite source of knowledge and we have very good and inspiring teachers at the Jean Monnet Faculty. However, courses are very theoretical and academic, and the only way to think about and try building our professional future is to find and attend Conferences, which often take place at the same time as our courses… University in general doesn’t provide help to look in the future and be ready for professional reality. This is a major asset of the Grande Ecole du Droit: we have a course called “Soft Skills and Professional Project” (delivered by a Partner from EY Law Firm, Stéphane Baller) which is all about preparing us for the future. I must confess it both stresses me and reassures me. It forces me to focus on my professional future, though being a vague and abstract notion, but I have learned so much in such a short period from Stéphane Baller that I think of the future more peacefully.

I have learned a lot throughout this Semester, and I’m very satisfied with the choice I made to attend the Jean Monnet faculty and the Grande Ecole du Droit. It can be difficult and stressful at times, but I am far more confident than I was six months ago and I am ready for this second semester.

Rose Pommeray

Nota Bene: If you want to apply, you will find the Grande Ecole du Droit on APB (Diplôme d’Etudes Juridiques Comparatives et Internationales, Faculté Jean Monnet, Université Paris XI).

A Christmassy night in La Défense

One of the many traditions at the “Grande Ecole du Droit” alongside September’s Welcome Presentation is the annual Christmas Party taking place at EY Law Firm’s headquarters in La Défense. Each year, the Christmas Party gathers all generations of the Grande Ecole du Droit’s students, as well as the program’s teachers and partners for a festive evening. The event is always a treat for the students after the first semester’s exams and a pleasant occasion to get together before the winter break. Unlike every previous Christmas Parties usually organized by the program’s founders Pr. Véronique Magnier and Me. Stéphane Baller, this year’s event was in the hands of motivated 2nd and 3rd year students. The main goal for us was to freshen up this traditional event as well as keep it entertaining for the audience. Challenge accepted.

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©Christophe Rabinovici

We decided to highlight the GED’s achievements in 2016 and thus, make it fully reflect on what has been a productive and innovative year. In fact, as well as being a perfect way to underline this year’s major events, choosing a retrospective dynamic for the evening allowed new students and alumni to catch a glimpse of the latest commitments of the student’s association, AEGED.

We first started our retrospective with the « Oral’s day », an innovation of the association which was set up in 2016. Among 1800 candidates and 150 eligible students, 30 would become the lucky ones and enter the GED, thanks to the four 2nd year students who organized this selection day. The purpose of the oral’s day, beyond recruiting interesting profiles, was getting to know those we would potentially “share our lives with” for the next couple of years.

From future GED students to freshly graduated ones, another novelty we decided to cast a light on that evening was the Graduation Ceremony. Indeed, this significant event was a key moment in the alumni’s lives: this never-done before ceremony meant a lot for former LL.M students as Locif Choulak recalled in his testimony. We looked back at the first ever ceremony of this kind at the GED as a rewarding night for those who successfully completed their LL.M and had just come back from their foreign universities all over the world.

During the event, we also wanted to present some students’ collaboration with TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL FRANCE which is part of TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL, a worldwide movement driven by one vision: a world where States, firms, civil societies and individuals in their everyday life won’t be affected by any kind of corruption anymore. This mission was achieved by a group of dedicated students thanks to the legal clinic of Paris Saclay created by Pr. Magnier.

Therefore, not only was it an opportunity to shine the light on some of the GED’s most impressive work throughout the past year, but it was also a way to look into the program’s near future and upcoming projects.

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©Christophe Rabinovici

One of the major innovations this year alongside the “Oral’s day” is the AEGED mobile phone application. Created by 1st year student Benjamin Rathelot, the app allows us to have a quick overview of the association’s ongoing missions and coming events and is meant to ease our everyday access to crucial information. When introducing his creation to the audience at the Christmas party, Benjamin shared his desire to further the GED’s digital revolution and expand its visibility through innovative initiatives.

The association also has many projects for 2017 as Me. Baller mentioned in his closing intervention, starting with the exportation of some activities of the AEGED such as the methodological guidebook to write a dissertation and many more projects to come. But one prominent event that was announced by Me. Baller that night was our all new partnership with the European Companies Legal Association French Chapter (http://www.ecla.org/)

Thanks to such a significant event we were once again proven that being part of the Grande Ecole du Droit is an exciting and rewarding adventure. We are very thankful for EY Law Firm to have considerably helped in the process of organizing the 2016 Christmas Party and look forward to the next one to be an ever more innovative and full of surprises event!

Camille Collos and Flora Merret

The First Graduation Ceremony of the Grande Ecole du Droit

The graduation ceremony took place at EY Société d’Avocats on October 21 2016. On that very evening, we saw our project come true.

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The 2016 graduates © Audrey Ailloud

We wanted to organize a great ceremony that everyone, especially the graduates, would remember. We thought that it would be logical to reward the students after four years of hard-work at the Grande Ecole du Droit. To make this evening unforgettable, we decided to gather the family and friends of the graduates. We also invited all the Grande Ecole du Droit students and our teachers.

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The welcoming of a new “GEDeration”

Last year, we decided to build a team in order to start organising the huge orientation week-end! Once the team was constituted, we had one initial objective: finding the best place to welcome the new “Grande Ecole du Droit” students. After long hours of research, we finally found a perfect cottage located in the French countryside, two hours away from Paris. During the summer, several meetings were organised to plan all the activities and the way the week-end should progress. Continue reading

A flight to the Czech Republic

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View from the observatory © Héloïse Vigouroux

In May, after a short but hard year, « Grande Ecole du Droit » students finally left laws and University benches to focus on their new travel destination: Prague. The trip, having been long organized by the « Student life Team » of the diploma’s association, had finally come, for the good of all.

Because of the demanding 22-hours bus trip of our last travel to Lisbon, the students of the Grande Ecole du Droit chose this time, with no hesitation, to travel by plane. Therefore, slightly over an hour after boarding, everybody landed on Czech territory, ready to discover a nice and well-located hostel, a not so bad weather and a wonderful city. Everything was in place for a great week to come.

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Tips & advice to organize an integration week-end (called WEI by students)

First of all you have to find a place to stay for the week-end, at least one night and it is not easy mostly because of your shoestring budget (a student budget is by definition very small) and because most owners are afraid to rent to a large group of students. Indeed they fear to find their place completely ravaged. So, you have to be patient and have a strong competence in negotiation to find the perfect place to rent for the WEI. Then you have to rent one or more buses to transport everyone (for more advice, please contact Manon Bourdin, the GED student who did this task). With the price of both, you can make a budget that every student who wants to attend the WEI will have to pay (to have an order of magnitude, our was 70€ per person), write a document to inform the students of the price, what is included in it, what they have to bring, documents they have to give, internal rules they have to sign … (to have the document written by Manon Bourdin and Héléna Chéron GED students please contact them).

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Students just arriving at the WEI.

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The transcript mission

At the moment, you must be wondering « What is she talking about? A transcript mission ?». Well, don’t worry this article is the answer to your questions.

Mélissa (in the middle) with Mathieu and Salomé, two other GED3 students, at an EY event  - © Christophe Rabinovici

Mélissa (in the middle) with Mathieu and Salomé, two other GED3 students, at an EY event – © Christophe Rabinovici

I was assigned to do this particular mission on behalf of my entire class. As you already know (or not, that’s not a shame!), the students of the « Grande Ecole du droit » are going abroad to study an LL.M during the 4th year of their education. In order to be accepted in the universities, we must, above all, work on our applications, which include the redaction of personal statements, résumés, letters of recommendation, transcripts etc.

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The Bridge Experience

At the end of summer 2012, an accomplished first year of law degree at “La Faculté Jean Monnet” had helped me forget the disappointment caused a few months earlier by my failure at the Science Po interview. Then, I remembered what my friend told me over a cup of coffee. The University offers highly regarded programs to its most promising students and grants freshmen the opportunity to jump on the bandwagon.

One must admit that communication has never been the asset of the faculty, even more so at Sceaux than at the other Paris rockers. So, unless you are extremely anxious, an enthusiastic reader, or a constantly eager-to-learn individual, it is difficult to be interested in all of the information sections provided by the faculty’s lousy former website (hopefully, things have changed! – a little bit).

Very quickly convinced that I wanted to follow the business law path and to join a prestigious college program as the ones in business schools or private preparatory schools, I jumped at this opportunity and I took my chance. I compiled files of my high school and first-year bachelor’s degree in law results (which must certify a good level of English), and my motivation letter in a flash drive. I also slyly added my admission letter to post baccalaureate merit scholarship from AEFE (Agence de l’Enseignement français à l’étranger). You have to go with anything that can help you. Finally, I laid it all on tiptoe, to the B13 office’s student advisor.

A few hours later (yes, the GED was still in its early hours and could not repel the advances of a potential brave GED soldier, you unfortunate 2015 new 1st years!), A phone call informed me that Professor Magnier, Head of the GED Program and former Vice-Dean of the Faculty, wanted to meet me for an interview. To hear about my project. To get a quick glance at the person I was. In short, she had to decide whether or not I had the profile to join this elite and still secret squad.

The interview went well (take this, Sciences Po!) and I was officially joining team red and white at the reunification. They just didn’t know it yet.

Maher, Grande Ecole du Droit student, during the Lysias competition - Faculté Jean Monnet

Maher, Grande Ecole du Droit student, during the Lysias competition – Faculté Jean Monnet

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From CPGE to the GED

After three years in High school, most Students do not really know what their career will be. Of course Teachers try to help, but having a vocation at that age is very rare. In most cases, students just choose the subjects in which they are told they will be good at, and then try to integrate a Classe préparatoire aux Grandes Ecoles because it is supposed to be the best way to have a good job.

Once you have been admitted in one of these prestigious schools, it can be difficult to move to a different field. Particularly regarding Law studies, since there is no official equivalence between such “Grandes écoles” and Law. Moreover going to University can be seen as a failure.

However the Grande Ecole de Droit offers quite a unique opportunity. Indeed it allows students to join after two years of CPGE directly as a second year student after passing an exam based on the first year courses in Law.

Alexis Corlay (here at the 2014 GED Integration Day) went from being a CPGE to a GED student

Alexis Corlay (here at the 2014 GED Integration Day) went from being a CPGE to a GED student

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