Monday Morning Message 5.2.22 Nothing is Given. Everything is Earned.

Posted 2022-05-02 10:18am

“Nothing is given. Everything is earned.” ― LeBron James

“Pressure is a privilege - it only comes to those who earn it.” – Billie Jean King

“As much as talent counts, effort counts twice.” ― Angela Duckworth  

Today is the first day of final exams and they continue through May 13.

If our students are looking for inspiration, they need look no further than last Friday’s results from the February 2022 Ohio Bar Exam.

I’m proud to share that CSU Cleveland-Marshall achieved an 80% pass rate for first-time bar exam takers, which placed us FIRST of Ohio’s 9 law schools in first-time bar passage rate.  

 Our graduates' strong performance didn’t come easy. It was earned. A recent study found that a law student must study 500 hours or more to have an 85% chance of passing the bar exam.

So my advice to our students is to change the way you look at the pressure of final exams.

Look at the pressure as a privilege that you have earned.

You have chosen to study and work during this time of your life like most people won’t, so that you can learn law and live justice like most people can’t.

You’ve worked hard all semester. You have diligently read and briefed cases, prepared and reviewed your notes and outlines, and practiced your legal analysis on hypotheticals and old exams. 

Trust your preparation – remember you have done the work.

Our graduates who passed the February Ohio Bar Exam are now celebrating their success, as they should. But as Muhammad Ali said, "I run on the road long before I dance under the lights."

I’m not going to say good luck; you’ll make your own luck if you’re prepared. Keep running on the road.

Dean Fisher’s Serenity Prayer for Final Exams

  • God grant me the serenity to accept that this semester has already tested me in ways I could not have imagined.
  • The courage to lean into the uncertainty with strength, resilience, and optimism.
  • And the wisdom to know that whatever the circumstances I face, I always have a choice on how to respond.
  •  Understanding that if I change the way I look at things, the things I look at can change.
  • Trusting in my skills and surrendering to an unshakeable belief in myself.
  • Accepting that the exam doesn’t just test my knowledge, it tests my state of mind.
  • Focusing on the moment and visualizing success.
  • Pacing myself, taking each question one at a time, and applying the law to the facts.
  • Taking the exam as it is, not how I or others would have written it.
  • Supremely happy that I am a student at a law school where we have each other’s back and we are in this together
  • Remembering that I have chosen to study and work during this time of my life like most people won’t, so that I can learn law and live justice like most people can’t.


 Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay Committed to Living Justice.

Have a great day. Have a great week.

My best,


Lee Fisher
Dean, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law
| Cleveland State University
Joseph C. Hostetler-BakerHostetler Chair in Law

For copies of past messages, please go to this link: Monday Morning Messages.

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