Yuk Lun graduated from Singapore Management University (SMU), School of Law, in 2014. He started SingaporeLegalAdvice.com as a blog in university, and it has since grown into the leading legal platform for individuals and SMEs in Singapore. He also enjoys any opportunity to practice his French.
This Letter is addressed to his 20-year-old self who has just started law school.
You think you have a plan. You plan is to study as hard as you can, and then harder. You plan to block all distractions and focus on studying the law. And then you plan to be a well-paid lawyer and cruise through life. And hey, who knows, maybe along the way you’ll find someone to marry, buy a property, have kids, and live out the Singapore dream?
Think again! I’m here to tell you that your plan sucks big time. Things are not what they seem. For example, lawyers at prestigious law firms are not cruising. Well, not the associates anyway. And nobody got to where they are by cruising along, since SMU was set up to add some competition to the status quo. So, drop that notion of slacking away. Once you do that, a world of possibilities open up. You can be anything you want, as long as you’re willing to work at it.
What else can you do where you are? You should try new student activities (as much as you can get away with)! Once you become an economic unit in the working world, you’ll realise that school is the most convenient place to try your hand at anything, whether it is dancing or hiking or organizing events.
You did one thing right though, which is to start SingaporeLegalAdvice.com. You saw there was the need for legal information online, and for connecting people to lawyers online. And you knew you had the skill to do something about it. Throughout the school years, you worked on it. Sometimes you worked on it more, sometimes you worked on it less, but you just added something whenever there was time. Come to think of it, even in year 3, your aim was to be a lawyer. Who could’ve guessed that you’d be working full-time on SingaporeLegalAdvice!
It is in doing that we change ourselves. You end up building websites, writing articles, doing online marketing, and knocking on lawyers’ doors. You make sure that SingaporeLegalAdvice helps their practice succeed. You discover a whole other world apart from learning and applying the law. It was challenging. It was also gratifying because you can feel the value you are adding, for example when you received a positive review. You know that it serves the legal consumer. In the end, the choice between practicing as a lawyer and working on SingaporeLegalAdvice.com was easy.
So, remember to try out different things if you can, because life doesn’t always turn out the way you expect. Circumstances change. You change. But not to worry, these are things you’ll find out for yourself soon!
Oh, and the part about the Singapore dream? It’s constantly being redefined. I’m not that old.