Cornell University - B.A. in History, Psychology - 2005 University of Georgia - M.A. in History - 2007
What I Did Before Law School:
After graduating from Cornell, I spent two years working towards an M.A. in history at the University of Georgia. I wrote my masters’ thesis on how and why the Rehnquist Court reached its civil rights decisions, which involved lots of primary source research and looking through former Supreme Court justices’ private papers. I enjoyed my experience at UGA, but over time I became more interested in obtaining a career in the law rather than just studying the field. So after earning my M.A., I worked for two years as a legal assistant for a solo practitioner in New York. Researching for, drafting, and editing briefs, memoranda, letters to judges, and other legal documents convinced me that I would enjoy being an attorney. So I applied to law school, and here I am !
What I am Hoping to Do with My Law Degree:
I’d like to clerk after graduating and then work for a firm. My dream is to some day become a federal judge.
My Best Experience at Penn Law:
1L has not been the hell that Scott Turow described. My courses are intense, but they are also exciting and have a manageable workload. So overall, I have been thrilled with the quality of education that I have received at Penn. I have also found that Penn’s reputation for collegiality is well-deserved. My classmates are normal, down to earth people who have been easy to befriend. My friends have helped me get through some of the tougher stretches this year and maintain a nice school-life balance.
Professor Who Influenced Me Most:
Professor Amy Wax has been terrific. She demands a lot from her students, but as a result I feel that I have learned Civil Procedure well. Plus, she has reminded me that I can learn a lot from someone with whom I share few political views.
My Favorite Course:
Describe How CP&P and the Center on Professionalism Are Helping Prepare You for Your Career:
They have helped me remember that although I am learning a lot here, I need to focus some of my efforts toward getting the job I want after graduating. This reminds me to do more than just study for exams, but also apply for jobs and speak with people who can guide me toward my career goals.
An Example of How the Law School’s Cross-disciplinary Approach Influences My Legal Education:
All four of my professors have advanced degrees in addition to their J.D. - and it shows! I’ve learned a lot about the roles that history, philosophy, and economics have in the law. After this year, I am looking forward to taking a few courses outside the law school so I can further broaden my perspectives and learn more than the straight doctrinal approach to law that I might have experienced at other schools.
My Favorite Philadelphia Moment:
After spending two years in New York, Philadelphia has been refreshing. Because of the lower cost of living, I can afford a much nicer apartment by myself for less than my share of the four bedroom apartment I shared in New York. It is also nice to be able to walk down streets and ride buses that leave me some room to stretch. It’s tough being a Mets fan here though!
My Favorite Place or Activity on the University Campus:
Well I’m a 1L, so I haven’t spent too much time outside of the library. But when I get the chance, I love to sit in the law school’s quad on a nice day.
What I’m Most Proud Of:
Maintaining a good balance between school and my social life. It would be easy to get lost in my books this semester, but I always make sure to spend time with friends and talk about things besides law school.
My Extracurricular Activities at Penn Law:
I have become an active participant and board member for Penn’s chapter of the American Constitution Society. ACS helps me remember that there is more to the law than understanding the cases in my books - it affects real people and their lives. We’ve organized and co-sponsored several events where students learned about the law’s ongoing role in health care reform, LGBT Equality, civil rights enforcement, and other important political areas.
What I Did for Public Service:
Since this is my first semester, I haven’t begun my pro bono requirement yet. But Penn’s emphasis on public service attracted me to the school. I am looking forward to applying the skills I have learned here to real cases and helping people in the process.