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The bar exam was the most stressful time of my entire life. I wouldn't wish that on anyone, except ... I went through the suck, most lawyers go through the suck, and YOU TOO SHOULD GO THROUGH THE SUCK! It's a rite of passage, a filter to remove the barely literate and the incomprehensibly lazy, especially in states with ridiculously high passage rates, like Iowa, Wisconsin, and South Dakota.

Proponents of the move argue that it will help grads avoid four months of stress (boo hoo) and accrued student loan interest, but here's a better idea, one that Iowa is also considering, but nobody is talking about: adopt the Uniform Bar Exam, especially since, as Iowans may already know, they are basically using it anyway.

One of my friends, years into his legal career, is still doing doc review in New York. Another one is working for a small firm in Southern California and hates his debt-ridden life. You see, in the major legal markets, there are still very few jobs, even for those of us with a couple of years' worth of experience. And for recent grads? Forget it -- there's nothing entry-level in the major markets.

Maybe it's time to rethink geography. When I graduated, I figured homeless on a beach beat sleeping on frozen streets, but maybe, just maybe, aiming for a crowded marketplace isn't the best move. In fact, why not aim for, say, fourteen marketplaces? This is the appeal of the Uniform Bar Exam: one test, one score, with portability to fourteen states.

At FindLaw, we know how important having a mentor is to one's professional development, so much so, that we often recommend it's one of the first things you do when you start a new job. But in all of our writings, we've never actually explained how to get a mentor.

It's very easy to say "get a mentor." But, how do you get the ball rolling? Who should you ask? What should you do? We're going to answer those questions for you -- read on to find out how to find a mentor.

A friend of a friend just failed the bar ... again. This concerned friend asked: what do you say to this person?

Nothing. If anything, offer a brief "if you need anything, let me know" condolence. Otherwise, they've got a lot of thinking and eventually studying to do, and nothing you can say will help.

In fact, we can think of way more things that you really shouldn't say, even if your heart is in the right place.

At least until 2015, the bar exam is the bar exam. What's left to say that hasn't been said before? Very little, which is why we're not trying to top our previous brilliant forays into tips for not having a stroke during bar review season. (Tip #1? Stop snorting caffeine pills.)

That being said, our previous surviving the [bar] times posts have focused on singular aspects of the experience (cram sessions, stress management, scheduling, etc.). Here is your all-in-one guide to the Big Freaking Test (BFT).

Professor Richard Sander of the University of California Los Angeles calls it the "mismatch theory." He's written a law review article, a book, and an article for The Atlantic about the subject -- how affirmative action supposedly sets up minorities to fail by placing them in schools that are too rigorous for them to handle.

His study, unsurprisingly, was not met with open arms. Critics complained that he lacked sufficient data to make the conclusions asserted. His response was to go to the one place that has all the data he'd ever need: the California State Bar.

Except they said no. Until the California Supreme Court, last week, said yes.

If you took the bar exam this past summer, then you have probably found out if you passed the bar exam. And, while others are jumping for joy, there are invariably some, who are not celebrating. It's time to break old study habits and change the game plan, because clearly (and I don't mean to be harsh), the current strategy did not work.

So, here are five tried and true tips that worked for me (ahem, I passed the bar in three states first time around). Sure, everyone is different, but I truly believe anyone can pass the bar exam. It's all in the approach ...

Seriously, this is becoming a new hobby: find and criticize proposals to "fix" law schools. (Don't ask about my ideas. With apologies to the South, it would somewhat resemble Sherman's March to the Sea, razing diploma mill schools, cutting seats everywhere else, and eliminating any ABA-sponsored tenure requirements to cut costs and tuition.)

Today's proposal? Lets make third-year useful again by incorporating bar exam prep classes into the curriculum. It's not a bad idea -- it's just mostly pointless.

How to Prepare Yourself for Bar Results: A Checklist

How do you prepare for bar results? The test was awful and the wait was possibly worse, but now that states are rolling out their pass lists, the day you get your bar results might be its own kind of dreadful.

It doesn't have to be, though, future barrister.

While many states have already released their bar exam pass lists, one of the most monstrous states for bar exam takers, California, has not yet done so. So for those of you still waiting for bar results, here's a checklist to help you prepare:

Maybe you've failed the bar exam ... multiple times. Or you passed the bar, but after getting laid off from a $30,000/year job, you've realized that the state of legal affairs in your state leaves little hope for the future. Maybe you're a third-year law student, with few job prospects, and you're trying to figure out where to set up your refrigerator box for a few months of post-grad homelessness.

You've got a lot of factors to consider when choosing your future state. Do you want to aim for the Bible Belt, or live amongst hipsters in Seattle? Do you have any family in that state from which you can mooch off of for a few weeks, months years? And, of course, there are the important considerations: