I think what has surprised me the most is the caliber of attorneys working at the courthouse for the other Judges. I'm not sure about other fields, but in the legal world where you went to law school is a big deal (at least especially in the first few years post-law school when you are trying to get your first job). Law schools are ranked on a tier level - first tier, third tier, fourth tier. The school I attended was a good fit for me, has a good local reputation, and was a tier 1 school - but at the very bottom of tier 1 (like #100ish) vs. Brandon who went to University of MN which is much higher ranked (historically in the top 20).
During orientation I had a chance to meet the other new clerks in the building - many who are recent graduates like myself. That's when it hit me. Because the other new clerks aren't from middle of the road schools, they are from schools like University of Michigan, Vanderbilt, Georgetown, and Harvard. (all top 10-15 schools).
It was incredibly intimidating!
I started feeling embarrassed - like the little fish in a big pond. Thankfully my career clerk graduated from the same school I did and was a big help. She reminded me that although our school name might not be as recognizable, we have reached the point of an equal playing field. We are all doing the same job. Although I might not have a fancy certificate on my wall, it doesn't mean I can't perform just as well (if not better :) ).
But even more important is reminding myself that my school name doesn't define me. My job title doesn't define me. My degree doesn't define me.
My faith defines me.
And at the end of the day the fact that I'm not Julianne from Harvard doesn't really matter to me - as long as I've left an impression that I'm Julianne who serves the most high King!
"Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."
1 Corinthians 15:58