Since its inception, the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core has helped many Baylor students prepare for the rigors of law school. One of our many pre-law graduates, Raymond Panneton (’10), recently contacted us with the following update:
After graduating from Baylor with a B.A. in Political Science, I earned a J.D. at Texas Southern University—Thurgood Marshall School of Law, where I served as an executive board member. I currently practice law with the Talaska Law Firm in Houston, focusing on complex medical malpractice and mass torts. In addition to my legal practice, I am a regular contributing columnist in the Texas Lawyer where I publish on technological advances in the practice of law. I am married to Hailey Panneton (Baylor ’12- Philosophy/Political Science), and we share our home with our three dogs, Leah, Riley, and Cannoli.
In addition to this update, Raymond was also kind enough to send us a few words of reflection on his experience in BIC and how it helped prepare him for both law school and his work as an attorney. You can read Raymond’s reflection below.
Reflection by Raymond Panneton (’10)
As a practicing attorney, I have the benefit of retrospection. I am now able to look back on my educational experiences and determine what contributed to my overall academic growth and success. As I look back, I can without a doubt point to my BIC experience as one of the best academic decisions I made.
The BIC is designed to be a program that attempts to integrate core academic requirements into one cohesive academic program. This integration of ideas and concepts challenges students to break the compartmentalized nature of higher education, that is, to realize that areas of study often affect and overlap each other. The BIC program not only highlights these areas of overlap, but also trains their students to synthesize this information to see the larger, global picture.
The ability to analyze issues from a global perspective, as learned in the BIC program, is a skill necessary to be successful in law school. As students will learn once they are in law school, gone are the days of black and white, and here are the days of shades of gray. Law school requires students to build on the fundamental knowledge that is being laid in each course. The successful law student must take what was learned in each class and synthesize this information together to create a broad understanding of how the law operates as a whole, not just how a segment of the law works. Having a global understanding of how the law operates will not only help the law student in class, but will strongly aid in passing the bar exam.
The BIC program lays a solid foundation for success in law school and in the practice of law. While a law professor is not likely to ask about “the role of women in society”, that law professor may ask how a contract issue could affect a tort claim. By learning how to synthesize information across multiple subject areas to create a global understanding of a concept, a BICer will likely be ahead of the curve in crafting an intelligent and well-reasoned response. Participation in the BIC program does not guarantee a student’s success in law school; however, the BIC does provide students with the necessary foundational skills to succeed in law school.
If you would like to send us an update or reflection, or if you have other ideas for the blog, please email Adam Moore, BIC Program Coordinator. We’d love to hear from you.