By Kevin O'Keefe

High school students find their true voice in a blog


Lawyers and other professionals can take a lesson from a couple students at a small New York City high school.

The Riverdale Press’ Isabel Angell (@isabeltheangell) reports that two years ago students, Eliana Padwa and Sam Gross, of the High School of American Studies wanted a place for students to share their thoughts and opinions independent of the school and administration.

The result was the blog, Uncommonsense. From Gross:

A lot of people in our school have a lot of valuable things to say about a lot of different topics. We think the most important part of addressing any kind of issue is talking about it and encouraging discussion. And obviously anyone can say anything they want to say — you have freedom to speak what you want to speak — but what we try to do is make sure that when you speak, people can hear you.

In addition to posting to the blog, the now 4 students post their pieces to Facebook where each post gets about 1,500 views. As Angell says, that’s not all bad for a school with only 367 students.

Not only do the blog’s posts spark discussions among students, the blog has brought positive change, including an upgrade in the school’s health curriculum.

Decades older, lawyers struggle to find their true voice. From law school where they learn legal writing to practicing law where they pen briefs to marketing where dry summaries of the law are done for alerts, newsletters and most blogs, lawyers don’t express themselves in their own voice.

As a lawyer you would be better served to blog like these students are — address issues, encourge discussion, speak freely (yet professionally) and make sure people here you.

Image courtesy of Flickr by Jay Parker

Kevin O'Keefe
About the Author

Trial lawyer turned legal tech entrepreneur, I am the founder and CEO of LexBlog, a legal blog community of over 30,000 blog publishers, worldwide. LexBlog’s publishing platform is used on a subscription basis by over 18,000 legal professionals, including the largest law firm in each India, China and the United States.

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