Friday, August 15, 2014

Once a Buckeye

If you're one of our law students, you're getting ready for your return to Moritz. As you meet new people this year, remember that one day they will be your colleagues---for better or worse.

One of my favorite things about meeting new students is learning where they are "from," a sometimes-loaded question if they've moved around over the years. Hearing the myriad ways people pronounce crayon, rural, and roof can amuse me for hours too.

As you prepare to meet your new classmates, take a look at this chart from the New York Times: Where We Came From, State by State. Here's the lowdown on people who were born in Ohio:
Ohio is another state with negative domestic migration. Since 1980, the number of residents born in neighboring Pennsylvania and Kentucky has fallen by a quarter million. The state's population growth is driven mostly by people born here.
In 1990, 74 percent of Ohioans (i.e., people living in Ohio) were born in Ohio. That number is currently 75 percent. That means you have good odds the people you meet in Ohio were born and raised in Ohio. This is in sharp contrast to my home state, Florida, where only 36 percent (!!!) of residents were born in Florida. Seems like everyone in Florida is from somewhere else.

What does all of this mean? Well for one thing, if you are a law student and meet a classmate who was not born in Ohio, recognize you've met a somewhat rare individual. (You in fact might also be a rare individual if you weren't born in Ohio.) Also take a moment to think about what it means to be from somewhere else coming into a state packed with people from this state. Make friends, bond over sports or exam stress, and learn a little bit about other parts of the country. If nothing else, it'll help you see the world from another perspective, something that can only improve your chances of relating well to future employers and clients.