Life After Ripon – Nathan Held ’14

[Editor’s Note: Nathan Held ’14, Sophia Kaounas ’14, and Ariana Myers ’14 are writing rotating monthly entries for the Ripon College Newsletter chronicling their post-graduation experiences. We hope you enjoy their perspectives on Life After Ripon!]

The fall semester of my first year at law school came to a quiet end on the 16th of December, after a prolonged period of examinations interspersed with days of time to run oneself ragged in preparation for the demonic experience that is law school examinations. However, my anticipation of exams was worse than the actual experience. I even enjoyed the contracts exam more than I liked the course itself. In any case, it all came to an end right before I hopped onto a plane to head back to Michigan for the break to see my family and a small group of friends.

Law school makes you question why on Earth you’re doing what you’re doing. What was I thinking when I decided to do it? Was I temporarily insane? I certainly continue to ask myself the same questions, which is probably healthy, but my questioning has become less frequent. I have become more comfortable with the idea of settling down somewhere in the Pacific Northwest and practicing law, whatever that area of law may be. The single-mindedness and myopia about which I last wrote in this blog has happily subsided, and I’m looking forward to my spring semester which will change the tone of my education to one more concentrated on crime, property, and the constitution.

I have been fortunate, as well, to have found a few people here in Eugene I can call friends. It’s made it much easier to start calling Oregon my home now that I have been able to surround myself with friends who understand German grammar jokes, who appreciate, or at least tolerate, editorial commentary on everything, and who are just as willing to combat over the minute meanings of obscure words as I am. It’s an odd enjoyment, but it works for us. Perhaps law school is more fertile ground for such relationships. Pedantry is a religious calling for us.

As I write this, Spring semester begins next Monday, and I have been on winter break for nearly three weeks. As my wintry time in Northern Michigan comes to a slow and cold end, my thoughts have turned increasingly to next semester and the warmer weather. The excitement I had before new undergraduate semesters began has come again. I am looking forward to going back to school.

There is little else I can write. I will close instead with my best wishes to Ripon alumni that you all have a happy new year and success, both personal and professional, in the many years to follow.

Nathan Held ’14

Related Posts

Detail of "Limpet," by James. B. Thompson

Exhibit of last works by James B. Thompson ’73 available to view online

“Tide Charts: Ebb and Flow,” an exhibit of mixed-media artworks by James B. Thompson ’73, is on view through Feb. 25 in Western Oregon University’s […]

Howard Dayle Balliett '39 and Marilynn Bruns Balliett '41

1941 attack on Pearl Harbor: Howard Dayle Balliett ’39, Marilynn Bruns Balliett ’41 were there

Dec. 7, 1941, was declared “a date which will live in infamy” by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt after the Empire of Japan’s attack on […]

Play rehearsal

Ripon College presents theatre production ‘Everybody’

“Everybody,” by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, a modern adaptation of the classic play “Everyman,” will be presented Dec. 8 to 11 in Benstead Theatre, C.J. Rodman Center […]

Joshua English '07

Short story by Joshua English ’07 wins award in fiction contest

“The Human Animal,” a short story by Joshua English ’07 of Louisville, Kentucky, won the 2021 Ember Chasm Review fiction award. His work is featured […]