Our Student Ambassadors

Sofia AscorbeSofia Ascorbe

Hometown: Miami, FL
Undergrad: Marquette University, English Literature and Philosophy
Interests: Criminal Law, Labor & Employment Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: ascorbe@wisc.edu

"During Admitted Students Weekend I was blown away by how friendly and inviting the atmosphere was, and I was impressed by the Law School's clinical offerings. By the time I left, I knew I had a home here already."

Read more about Sofia

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I took some time off to spend with my family in Miami, FL. I also traveled to Panama, where my mom is from.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew that most law students do not obtain all of their credits through formal classes only. The externship/internship and clinical opportunities are part of almost every student's academic career.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I serve as the Student Bar Association (SBA) president which represents the student body in regard to academic life, social life, and community engagement. I am also highly involved with the Latino/a Law Students Association (LLSA), serving as their LEO representative. I will be competing with the UW Law Mock Trial team in San Francisco this year, and I volunteer as an Academy Mentor with UW's Center for Academic Excellence, a pipeline for undergraduates thinking about law school.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I was a student attorney for the Wisconsin Innocence Project for a year as part of the clinical programs at the Frank J. Remington Center, and one of my clients had his conviction vacated. Preparing arguments for the court (we drafted, submitted, and argued motions, and worked extensively on an appellate brief), while providing him with practical and emotional support (we obtained social services for him and were in constant communication with him and his family), was one of the most emotionally moving and intellectually stimulating experiences of my law school career.

I currently work as a corporate legal intern with American Family Insurance at their national headquarters in Madison, where I research exciting and relevant areas of law and assist with litigation-related projects.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I grew up as an Army brat, so I lived in six different cities by the time I was eight years old, including San Juan, Puerto Rico and Washington, DC, where my dad worked at the Pentagon.

Matthew AtkinsMatthew Atkins

Hometown: Laguna Niguel, CA
Undergrad: University of California, Berkeley; Political Economy, Legal Studies, and Political Science
Interests: Business law, environmental law, land use
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: matkins3@wisc.edu

"Excellent value, law in action approach, great clinical programs, diploma privilege."

Read more about Matthew

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
Took a cross-country road trip.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
It’s important to be early and get a good seat on the first day of class, because a number of professors will memorialize that position with a seating chart.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, Christian Legal Society.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I’ve worked in the Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, which provides legal services to entrepreneurs and startup companies. I’ve had opportunity to assist with entity selection and registration, and draft a variety of transactional documents including an Operating Agreement, Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, Intellectual Property Assignment, Non-Disclosure, and Non-Compete.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I have visited 49 states and 11 countries.

Ellen AtterburyEllen Atterbury

Hometown: Madison, WI
Undergrad: UW Madison – History
Interests: Criminal Justice, economic and social justice, women’s issues, abusive head trauma defense
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: eatterbury@wisc.edu

"I am from Madison and love this town! Plus, it has a great reputation for clinics, and I have been interested in working for the Wisconsin Innocence Project since I was in undergrad. My goal going into law school was to learn how to help people, and I knew the clinics would help me achieve that end."

Read more about Ellen

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a fit specialist in Victoria’s Secret.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
The curve, and the fact that Mike Hall is literally the Swiss army knife of the law school. He is so fantastic. I know a lot of students feel stressed and under extreme pressure, and I wish I had known earlier that Mike Hall was there to listen.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am the Vice President of Academic Affairs for the Student Bar Association. This involves attending and giving student input for the Orientation committee, organizing and recruiting small group leaders for orientation activities, assigning mentees, and selecting members for faculty committees. I am also the new Program Coordinator for Ready to Rent, a pro-bono outreach program that holds weekly classes at the work-release center. The goal for this program is to teach the inmates basic landlord tenant laws and how to communicate effectively and politely with landlords. In addition, when they complete the program, they will receive a certificate that they can give to future landlords that shows their effort into having a meaningful and positive landlord tenant relationship, despite a criminal record. I have also been on a trip to New Orleans though the school for pro-bono work.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I love my work at the Wisconsin Innocence Project. It is fulfilling on both a personal and professional level, and I learn something everyday from both my clients and supervising attorneys.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I like animals a lot, but apart from that not really.

Phil BillowPhil Billow

Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
Undergrad: Ohio State University; Political Science/Philosophy
Interests: Corporate Transactions and Litigation, Finance, Tax
Expected Graduation Date: December 2017
Contact: pbillow@wisc.edu

"Madison offers a relatively low maintenance and enjoyable experience. This was an important priority as I wanted to concentrate on succeeding in law school. Madison also offers proximity to Chicago and Minneapolis. The UW has a “Big 10” attitude and spirit, which I wanted to experience again while becoming familiar with a new place and new people. And although Ohio State does many things right, UW Law is better than all Ohio options!"

Read more about Phil

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I relaxed as much as possible. But I also worked for newly opened restaurants and travelled around the country to educate those in the service industry on wine service and bartending.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew that law degrees only travel so much. Employers are very regional. Although I could theoretically get a job anywhere in the country, it becomes difficult the farther from Madison you travel.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am involved in the International Jessup Moot Court Competition, the Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender & Society and I am a student mentor and small group leader.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am a working clinical law student in the Consumer Law Clinic at the Economic Justice Institute which offers consumer protection to the indigent. I work in debt collection, garnishment and repossession cases. I am involved in ongoing litigation against a major credit card corporation which is extremely thrilling!

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I enjoy all outdoor activities and health and clean eating are a serious passion. I am also travelling to Uganda for Christmas this year to lobby the National Assembly to support legislation controlling dangerous chemicals used in gang violence.

Allysa BrownAllysa Brown

Hometown: Philadelphia PA
Undergrad: Penn State University, Administration of Justice
Interests: Criminal Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: brown49@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law because this was the only interview I went on that made me feel wanted and comfortable. Every other school was concerned about money or my LSAT score but UW wanted to get to know me as a person."

Read more about Allysa

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I attended the CLEO Scholars program at Ole Miss (University of Mississippi School of Law).

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew that the exams were four hours long.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

BLSA (Black Law Student Association).

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I currently work for the Wisconsin Innocence Project.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I do not like anything with a white sauce to it. I do not eat Alfredo, blue cheese, sour cream, or ranch.

Tomás ClasenTomás Clasen

Hometown: Shorewood, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Madison. I majored in History and I earned certificates in African Studies and East Asian Studies
Interests: Complex commercial litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: clasen@wisc.edu

"I went to Wisconsin for undergrad, so I was familiar with the campus and the city of Madison. Also, several friends had graduated from the Law School and raved about their experiences."

Read more about Tomás

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
Before law school, I worked for four years in New York City. In NYC, I participated in Teach For America. I taught for two years in both Harlem and Brooklyn.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish someone would have told me to visit all the schools I was considering. There is no better way to get a feel the culture of a school and whether it will be a good fit for you personally than being on campus interacting with people who go to school there.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I hope to become more involved in some organizations during my last two years of law school. However, officially I am only a member of the Wisconsin Law Review and the Moot Court Board.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
This past summer I worked at the Wisconsin Innocence Project. I loved getting some true litigation experience as a rising 2L. I’d recommend the clinic for anyone interested in criminal law or litigation more broadly.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I am actually from Guatemala originally. I have been lucky enough to spend extended periods of time in Europe, Africa, South and Central America as well as Asia. I love to travel.

Matthew CokerMatthew Coker

Hometown: Pacifica, CA
Undergrad: University of California, Davis-Political Science. Master's Program in Political Science at the University of New Hampshire
Interests: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: coker2@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin because it's an excellent law school with a strong national reputation. It was really important to me to attend a school that has a good academic reputation and that could help me obtain jobs in different areas of the country."

Read more about Matthew

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a legal assistant for an estate planning attorney in Davis, CA. Working for a solo-practitioner gave me tremendous insight into the business of running a legal office, cultivating a client base and interacting with different attorneys and other professionals.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had known how different law school is from any other type of academic program I had experienced before. Since I'd successfully completed a master's degree and published a thesis, I thought I was well prepared coming in, but the law program is vastly different from any other area of study I've done before.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I'm currently in two Frank J. Remington Center clinics - Oxford Federal Project and Criminal Appeals Project. I'm a 2L representative with SBA, vice-president of the American Constitution Society, and outreach chair with QLaw. I'm also co-chaired the bake-off for this year's Dean's Cup.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
I spent this past summer working in the Oxford Federal Project in the Remington Center. My clinical experience is the best thing I've done in law school so far. Getting exposure to real legal work and working under the guidance of a supervising attorney was a rich educational experience I wouldn't trade. I've learned a lot about my working methods, working with clients, and legal research and writing skills that I think will benefit me during the next two years of law school and beyond.

The clinical experience has also greatly changed my career focus. Prior to starting law school, I didn't want anything to do with criminal defense or criminal law in general. After taking Professor LaVigne's Criminal Procedure class last spring and participating in the Oxford Federal Project, I've completely changed career course and am looking to participate in the Public Defender Program this coming spring.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I jokingly tell people that I took the scenic route to law school-specifically that I used a road map rather than directions. I think I bring a different perspective to my law school experience as a somewhat older student (in my early 30s). I've completed a graduate program and published academic research. I've lived in three different regions of the country, being a California native (near San Francisco), attending graduate school in New Hampshire, and now law school in Wisconsin. I've held some very interesting jobs and have quite a bit of work experience.

I'm deeply passionate about music, and have encyclopedic knowledge about certain artists, genres and eras. I also greatly enjoy cooking and hosting dinner parties. I try to gain as much from every experience and opportunity as possible and have been trying to make a positive impact on the law school community since I started here last fall.

Christian ConwayChristian A. Conway

Hometown: Oak Park, Illinois
Undergrad: Emory University – Political Science & History Double Major
Interests: Juvenile, Family Law, Employment Litigation, Appellate Work
Expected Graduation Date: Spring 2018
Contact: Conway6@wisc.edu

"Location, Culture, Warmness."

Read more about Christian

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
Taught Spanish classes.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
That you cannot prepare for it so just enjoy your summer.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Black Law Student Association, Moot Court, International Law Journal, Midwest Black Law Student Association, Unemployment Appeals Clinic.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
Family Law Project.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I love Reality T.V, running when I can, Eating greasy food, politics, weight lifting and being a support system to my friends and family.

Michael DavisMichael Davis

Hometown: Waukesha, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin - Whitewater; B.S. Biology
Interests: Intellectual Property, Business
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: mdavis33@wisc.edu

"Growing up in Wisconsin, I always knew I wanted to come back. When I visited the Law School I felt a connection. The Law School has great clinical programs, and studying in a state capital provides so many opportunities you can’t find elsewhere."

Read more about Michael

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I was working at a top 15 hospital doing genetic testing.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I would have observed a class before I actually started last fall. It would have been very helpful to see how people brief cases, and the flow of class before I actually got thrown into it.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Law Review, SELP, IPSO.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
My first summer I worked for the Law and Entrepreneurship clinic. It was a great experience helping people starting their own businesses seeing their dreams come together. I learned more in one summer about startups and business law than I thought possible. I really feel like the experience set me up for future success.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I have an amazing wife, a rambunctious chocolate lab, and a playful cat.

Whitney EdererWhitney Ederer

Hometown: Plain, WI
Undergrad: Winona State University-Paralegal/Pre-Law & Sociology
Interests: Health Care Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: wederer2@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin because of the health law opportunities, the collegiate atmosphere, and because Madison is my home."

Read more about Whitney

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked at the William S. Middleton Memorial Veteran's Hospital as an intern in the Health Information Management Section.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew more about the dual-degrees in general and what they offer to enhance your legal education and future career.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am a 2L class representative for the Student Bar Council, I'm a part of the Public Service Committee and I'm an incoming 1L student mentor. I'm also a UW Law school tour guide, a Themis Bar Review Representative, and the Health Law Student Association marketing director. I'm a member of the Student Network for Public Health, Women's Law Student Association, American Bar Association, and Wisconsin Bar Association.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
I've worked for the Center for Patient Partnerships this past summer, a clinical program at the UW Law School. Working hands-on with clients and researching health care issues was an experiences I will never forget.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I enjoy zumba and other fitness classes (yoga, strength training, spin, lap swimming). I recently started a blog about my own personal wellness journey to serve as an inspiration, guide and resource to others who want to live well.

Olivia EsserOlivia Esser

Hometown: Redfield, South Dakota
Undergrad: University of Nebraska- Lincoln; psychology
Interests: undecided
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: oesser@wisc.edu

"One of my criminology professors in undergrad loved Wisconsin Law School and talked about it all the time. When I visited here as a sophomore for a football game I could see why! I fell in love with Madison & was very excited to have the opportunity to come to law school here."

Read more about Olivia

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I spent the year before law school working in an AmeriCorps position helping military families. I spent the summer planning “Back to School Brigades” and filling backpacks with school supplies.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had known that law schools, like any other program, have cultures that are distinct as personalities. It would have made me unnecessary stress if I had known more about Wisconsin’s culture- specifically that is above all else supportive. From your classmates to administrators, everyone challenges you to do your best.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am involved in the Women’s Law Student Association, Moot Court, Wisconsin Law Review, Legal Assistance for Disaster Relief, and If/When/How.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am working the Oxford Federal Project out of the Remington Center. We assist potential clients serving a federal sentence at Oxford Federal Prison with a variety of legal issues. These can be everything from post-conviction sentence modification to family law questions.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I love to bake and I signed up for my first half-marathon in November! Not sure those two things will work well together, but it will make for an exciting semester.

Robb Evans

Robb Evans

Hometown: Twin Lakes, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Madison, Economics and History
Interests: Securities, general business
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: revans3@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because I really liked the experiential learning aspect of the school."

Read more about Robb

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked at Memorial Union and kind of relaxed before law school began.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish that I had a better impression of what the student body was like. Wisconsin has such a friendly atmosphere and if I had know that during admissions I would have chosen UW way sooner.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am part of the Wisconsin International Law Journal.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
I worked at the Consumer Law Clinic. I had a chance to negotiate a settlement and prepare an argument for a hearing this past summer.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was born on Leap Day, so technically I have only celebrated 5 real birthdays.

Chelsea FischerChelsea Fischer

Hometown: Sussex, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Political Science and Public Administration
Interests: Civil Litigation and Family Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: cfischer5@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because of its nationally ranked clinics and diploma privilege opportunities."

Read more about Chelsea

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I spent as much time as possible outside. I spent my weekends up north on the lake and worked at a park during the week. I also took a road trip to Oklahoma to spend time with family.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew more about the law school's competitive organizations. I think they teach so many practical skills and I never considered them before selecting my school.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am in the Family Court Clinic, Women's Law Student Association, Phi Alpha Delta, Wisconsin Law Review, and Moot Court.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
I spent one year as a clinical law student as part of the Family Court Clinic and a summer as a law clerk at Centro Legal. Both allowed me to appear on the record in family law cases and work with clients. I also completed a judicial internship at the Wisconsin Supreme Court working on various issues including gun control, sexual assault, and insurance disputes.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I'm a first degree black belt in tae kwan do. You will always find me with headphone in because I love music and I used to be part of an acapella group and perform in various musicals.

Annie GetsingerAnnie Getsinger

Hometown: San Antonio, TX; Baraboo, WI (and a few other places along the way)
Undergrad: University of Missouri-Columbia; Journalism
Interests: Family Law, Criminal Law, Health Care Law, Education
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: getsinger@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because of its clinical offerings and real-life approach to learning about the law. I plan to stay in Wisconsin to practice when I graduate, so diploma privilege is also a wonderful advantage to have. (I also value the inclusiveness of the campus and law school communities. I am interested in helping all prospective, admitted and current students feel welcome. During last year’s Admitted Students Weekend reception, I volunteered to mingle with students. I had two people ask me about the atmosphere at the law school for LGBT students. I think this is an important perspective to include among the student ambassadors.)"

Read more about Annie

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a newspaper reporter for the eight years prior to entering law school. During the summer before I started school, I worked at the Baraboo News-Republic and then took a month off to relax, camp and hike with my family at my favorite Wisconsin state parks.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had known about the wonderful friendships I would make in my small group and clinic. I didn’t anticipate the environment being so friendly and laid-back. I have enjoyed the students, staff and professors as much as I have loved learning the material.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Women’s Law Student Association, Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender & Society, occasional admitted student lunch host, Orientation Small Group Leader, Jackie Macaulay Auction volunteer. I have also applied to be a 1L student mentor.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am currently enrolled in the Family Law Project clinic. I have spent this summer working to help incarcerated clients work through their family law issues. One of the most rewarding experiences has been helping a client to have visits with their child for the first time in years.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I played rugby in college and enjoyed short-lived stints as a roller derby girl and amateur boxer. I have two (soon-to-be) stepchildren, ages 10 and 12.

David HollanderDavid Hollander

Hometown: Highland Park, Illinois
Undergrad: University of Missouri, Political Science
Interests: Civil Litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: dhollander2@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin because it seemed to be a close-knit law school with the resources of a major research university. At Wisconsin, it is easy to develop strong relationships with classmates and professors."

Read more about David

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked until about a month before orientation started. Then, I went to Peru for a couple of weeks and moved to Madison early to settle in.               

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am involved in Mock Trial and the American Constitution Society. I also play on the law school's hockey and ultimate frisbee teams.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
I work for the Wisconsin Department of Justice Consumer Protection and Antitrust Unit, helping Assistant Attorney Generals bring civil law suits to enforce consumer protection status.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I am also a student attorney in the UW Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, where I help early-stage businesses and nonprofits navigate various legal hurdles.

Zhenlan (Joe) HuZhenlan (Joe) Hu

Hometown: Nanjing, China
Undergrad: University of Toronto, Specialist Program in Management and Information Technology
Interests: Intellectual Property (Patent, Trademark and Copyright law), International Trading Law
Expected Graduation Date: Spring 2018
Contact: hu259@wisc.edu

"I chose University of Wisconsin Law School because I am interested in working at one of the Clinical Programs. UW law school is widely known for its legal in action philosophy. Students get hands-on experience at an earlier stage. The law school is located in Madison where law students can enjoy the gorgeous view over Lake Mendota from the Bascom Hill. Madison is also the state seat of Wisconsin, so law students have access to great legal resources such as the State Law Library and State Congress. Last but not the least, the tuition cost is relatively lower than other public or private law schools."

Read more about Zhenlan

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I quit my tutor/consultant job at New Oriental School in Beijing, so I could spend more time accompanying my family before going to law school in August. In my hometown, I worked as a self-employed English tutor during the entire summer. At leisure, I wrote periodic articles sharing English learning and law school application experience on major media.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I would like to know more about the various extra-curriculum activities offered by the law school such as mock trial, moot court and law journals. I hope that I could have had more information with respect to different clinical programs. I do not know that students can actually work at a government agency as an externship throughout the academic year until second year starts.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I volunteered at Wisconsin Unemployment Appeals Clinic. I represented low-income clients at the Madison Hearing Office or on phone hearings. I discussed legal matters during the interview/in-take. I am a member of the Asian Student Law Association, and Intellectual Property Student Organization. I played basketball for our law school at Dean's Cup.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I worked as a summer law clerk at Wisconsin Department of Revenue. I will continue in the 2016 Fall as an externship. I conduct legal research, write memorandums, and report to the Chief Counsel. I worked on issues related to real estate transfer, Native American taxation, alcohol and cigarette tax. I also attended depositions, hearings, mediations and wrote briefs in support of summary judgment motion. This is so far the best internship I have ever had in my career. The staff attorneys and legal assistants supported me and treated me as part of the family. My supervisor and two of the attorneys spent great amount of time helping me with my writing skills. I have got several good writing samples that I could show future employers.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I attended University of Toronto and I have travelled to many places throughout Canada. I especially like Ontario, Quebec and Alberta provinces. I have been to the Banff and Jasper National Parks, Rocky Mountain Area. I enjoy cooking Chinese cuisine at home. I brought food to my co-workers at the office and they liked it.

Riley LeonardRiley Leonard

Hometown: Fairbanks, AK
Undergrad: University of Alaska Southeast - Anthropology
Interests: Criminal Law, Human Rights, International Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: rcleonard@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because it provided the perfect characteristics for a graduate program – high national ranking, experiential learning opportunities and an exciting and vibrant community."

Read more about Riley

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I spent my last summer touring around the western United States camping in national parks and forests. It was a great way to take a deep breath before the rigor of law school. It also reminded me of the importance of maintaining a work-life balance throughout my first year.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I would have known about the realities of day-to-day life in law school. While it definitely takes over your life at times, there are ways to prevent, or at least delay, the burnout and exhaustion.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am a member of the Student Bar Association (student government), the Wisconsin Innocence Project, Wisconsin International Law Journal, Mock Trial, Wisconsin International Law Society and the Indigenous Law Students Association. I am also on the 1L Orientation Committee and the Faculty Tenure Committee.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
The Wisconsin Innocence Project is a phenomenal opportunity to get involved in complex appellate work. I have had the opportunity to write motions for inmates on death row raising various constitutional and statutory claims. It’s exciting to apply the skills and knowledge you learn in the classroom to the real world and a real case. It’s tough and intense, but worth every second.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I love to cook and travel. I try to learn a new dish from every country I visit to bring back home to my friends and family. One day I hope to open my own restaurant.

Emily LiebmanEmily Liebman

Hometown: Edina, MN
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Madison, Class of 2014, B.A. in Political Science and History, Certificates in Jewish Studies and European Studies
Interests: Public interest law, criminal law, criminal prosecution
Expected Graduation Date: Spring 2018
Contact: ealiebman@wisc.edu

"I chose University of Wisconsin because I knew UW Law had strong public interest programming and I appreciated that the school was located in the Midwest. I came to law school hoping to practice in Minnesota, and while my interests have now expanded to Colorado as well, I appreciate UW Law’s close proximity to one of the regions of the country I am interested in practicing in. I also chose UW Law because I grew to love Madison and UW as an undergrad, and knew that I would be able to have a comfortable experience in law school upon my return to Wisconsin."

Read more about Emily

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I finished up my year living and working in Steamboat Springs, CO, and backpacked through Europe for a month.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
While I knew that getting outlines from 2Ls and 3Ls can be helpful, I wish someone would have given me more guidance on how to go about asking for them, as I only realized during my 1L year that it can be extremely helpful to gather several people’s outlines and cross-reference them with your own to ensure that you have a complete understanding of the material. I also wish someone had told me that professor office hours in law school are significantly more beneficial to attend than in undergrad, and they should be taken advantage of particularly to go over practice exams.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I compete on the moot court and mock trial teams, am the Vice President of Community Service for the Jewish Law Students Association, am a member of the Womens Law Students Organization, and volunteer with the Ready to Rent pro bono program and with the Madison Memorial Mentorship program coordinated by the Black Law Students Association.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school: The summer following my 1L year, I was a law clerk for the United States Attorney’s Office in the District of Minnesota. I learned a great deal from this job, and my legal research and writing skills improved significantly in only just one summer. This job also solidified my interest in pursuing a career as a prosecutor.

Any other interesting facts about you? I took a year off between undergrad and law school to be a ski instructor out in Steamboat Springs, CO. I still go back there over my winter and spring breaks to teach skiing.

Casaundra LucilleCasaundra Lucille

Hometown: Madison, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin- Madison, Legal Studies and Sociology
Interests: Litigation and Trial Work
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: clucille@wisc.edu

"I am originally from Madison, and I went here for undergrad as well. I looked at other schools in the Midwest and on the East and West Coasts. I chose to come to Wisconsin because of its good reputation, and because it has alumni all across the country."

Read more about Casaundra

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a waitress and traveled.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I’d known that I didn't need to apply to so many schools. While it was nice to have options, you are only going to attend one school; applying to more than ten may be excessive.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

The Black Law Students Association and Moot Court

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
The judicial externship program is a great opportunity to work with judges and see court proceedings firsthand. I will also be representing WI law competing in Vienna with the Vis Moot team.

Any other interesting facts about you? 

I have been on dance teams most of my life, including as an undergrad when I participated in UW-Hypnotiq.

Amanda PostelAmanda Postel

Hometown: Madison, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Madison, Spanish & Geography
Interests: Immigration, International Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: ampostel@wisc.edu

"Wisconsin pride! The University of Wisconsin is a highly ranked law school, and I was already established in Madison before starting law school. Madison is a great place to live!"

Read more about Amanda

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I spent the summer with my kids. Prior to law school, I worked as a Bilingual Resource Specialist for the Madison Metropolitan School District, and had the summer off. So, I was able to spend my last summer before law school going camping, going to music festivals and hanging out at home with my two children.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I got a lot of good information from the admissions office. I took the time to ask all the questions I had, and they were all answered. The admissions office was really attentive and helpful, so there wasn't really any missing information I can say I wish I had known.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am a member LLSA and BLSA.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you've had while in law school.
Last semester I was a research assistant for Professor Yackee. This summer I did the Immigrant Justice Clinic and was a Summer Tour Guide. This fall, I will be a contracts study group leader for LLM students. I also received a FLAS scholarship this year to study International Law and Portuguese in addition to the regular law school curriculum.

Any other interesting facts about you?
My favorite hobbies are Latin dancing and playing European-style strategy board games. I was an exchange student to the Canary Islands in high school. I love to bike and spend time outdoors.

Megan RenslowMegan Renslow

Hometown: Moorhead, MN
Undergrad: Macalester College; Philosophy and Classical Civilization
Interests: Criminal Law; Civil Litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: renslow@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin because of the clinical programs and how close knit the community seemed to be when I toured. I am especially grateful for the clinical programs now after having worked at the Restorative Justice Project."

Read more about Megan

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a front desk clerk in Fargo, ND.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I don’t have any lawyers in my family so I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I didn’t even know what everyone meant when they started talking about outlines at orientation. I wish I had some sort of guidance or crash course in what law school entailed before jumping into it.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Mock Trial; Law Review; Women’s Law Student Association.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
This summer I worked in the Remington Center at the Restorative Justice Project. This job was probably the most difficult work I’ve ever had to do. I spoke with victims and offenders about the harm a crime created to prepare them for a potential dialogue. I saw first hand the amount of pain and humanity the criminal justice system ignores. I also was exposed to the huge amount of hope and strength within each person. I don’t know if I can categorize my work as exciting, but it fulfilling, difficult, emotional, and rewarding.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I almost went to school for musical theatre.

Samantha RichieSamantha Richie

Hometown: St. Paul, MN
Undergrad: UW-Madison; Political Science, History, Criminal Justice
Interests: Criminal law, public interest law, issues related to juvenile justice
Expected Graduation Date: May 2017
Contact: srichie@wisc.edu

"I learned about the clinical opportunities available to law students while I was an undergrad at UW, and I knew that was something I really wanted to be involved in. I also loved the idea of getting to cheer on the Badgers as a student for a few more years."

Read more about Samantha

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a legal assistant in a law firm specializing in estate planning before starting law school. I spent the last couple weeks of the summer traveling and visiting friends and family.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I would have known that even though school is busy and can be stressful, it is possible to work hard and still have fun outside of the law school. There are so many great opportunities in Madison, and it’s important to still do the things you enjoy doing.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

Children’s Justice Project, Public Interest Law Foundation, Legal Assistance for Disaster Relief, and Wisconsin Law Review.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am a part of the Family Law Project in the Frank J. Remington Center where I have had the opportunity to represent clients in various family law matters, and really apply what I’ve learned in my classes to the real world.

Any other interesting facts about you? 

I really like to bake and cook a lot of different things, especially when I’m stressed or procrastinating. I also enjoy running and other workout routines.

Ailani TaylorAilani Taylor

Hometown: Chicago
Undergrad: Psychology and Criminology
Interests: Family Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: jjohnson69@wisc.edu

"I chose to attend the University of Wisconsin Law School because of its amazing clinical programs."

Read more about Ailani

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The summer before I attend law school I attended the CLEO Pre-Law Minority Program.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish some had told me how valuable time management could be to your success at law school.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am the Vice-President of the Children’s Justice Project and the Director of Community Service of the Black Law Student Association.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I have a clerkship with Gingras Cates & Luebke.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I love gymnastics and healthy eating.

Khanh 

TranKhanh Tran

Hometown: Milwaukee
Undergrad: Marquette University / Philosophy
Interests: Tax Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: ktran6@wisc.edu

"I wanted to practice law in Wisconsin, the tuition was affordable, and school ranking was high."

Read more about Khanh

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I was working for Milwaukee Public Schools as an educational assistant.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
It is a long process and never sell yourself short. Start early.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I am involved in the Asian Law Student Association as well as the Indigenous Law Student Association. I am an active board member for both student orgs.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am currently working for American Family Corporate as a law clerk.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I’m a Vietnamese immigrant who found himself calling Wisconsin home. I am the first person in my family to ever go to law school.

Laura VoegeliLaura Voegeli

Hometown: Madison, WI
Undergrad: UW-Madison, Spanish and Elementary Education
Interests: Criminal, immigration
Expected Graduation Date: May 2018
Contact: lvoegeli@wisc.edu

"I really like the campus here; Madison is such a cool city with so much to do. The Law School here also has really good clinical programs."

Read more about Laura

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a dive coach and pool manager at a pool in Madison.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
Start your outlines after the first or second week and type them. Many professors say to start them later, but that creates a lot of stress later in the semester when everything is getting busy.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?

I have been doing probono work at the Community Immigration Law Center and the National Immigrant Justice Center.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am currently working at the Wisconsin Innocence Project. It has been an amazing experience. I have visited clients in prison, interviewed witnesses and past lawyers, and written DNA and new trial motions to circuit courts and the WI Supreme Court.

Any other interesting facts about you? 
I coach ski racing in the winter for a local club team. I am an avid skier and go water and snow skiing frequently during the school year.

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