Once a year around this time I have to give a speech on The Role of the Legal Secretary in [The Firm’s] Environmental Practice to the co-op students who have been selected to join us in the new year. I was bestowed the honour because the year they started this initiative my co-worker Jenn was on maternity leave. I’ve been stuck with it ever since. Thanks a lot Jenn!
The first year I had to do it I was terrified. I used to be swell at speeches when I was in grade school. I’m sure my mom has some ribbons and shit to prove it. Then I moved around to different schools a bit and I got the Fear after having to make all new friends in grade 8, 9, 10 and 11! I avoided speeches in university. So the first year my supervisor asked me so nicely to give the speech I wanted to kill myself, but obviously I agreed because I am a big pushover and also there was nobody else in my department to do it.
I actually look forward to giving the speech now. The students are always so bright-eyed and happy to be working in such a big firm. Law is still so very exciting to them. They are not yet jaded by the hierarchy and their place in it or bogged down in the mundane details that come between the bits of the day that truly are exciting. Giving the speech year after year has fixed my confidence.
The free lunch and movie coupons they bribe me with are pretty good too.