UW Law’s Student Ambassadors are current law students who are dedicated to helping admitted students make a smooth and successful transition to law school.

Student Ambassadors

As current second and third-year law students, all of our Student Ambassadors have first-hand knowledge of what it takes to thrive at UW Law. Their perspectives will help you feel more comfortable and confident as you begin your law school career.

Student Ambassadors answer questions, offer candid advice, and help new students navigate the challenges of their 1L year. If you have questions or concerns about entering law school, our ambassadors would be happy to speak with you.

If you have additional questions about the admissions process, please contact the Admissions Office directly at admissions@law.wisc.edu or 608-262-5914.

Our Student Ambassadors

Joseph Beckmann

Joseph Beckmann

Hometown: Chicago, IL
Undergrad school and major: University of Chicago – Political Science, 2011
Interests: Food, Beverage, Restaurant, Hospitality & Leisure Law, Small Business and Startups Litigation and Transactional Business Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: jsbeckmann@wisc.edu

"Wisconsin was always a top choice for me even when I was considering my undergraduate options. I love the city, the campus, the vibrant community, and I knew that the law school would provide me with the best opportunity to receive an excellent legal education. As an added bonus, the school seemed to have the friendliest, most approachable students and staff. Also, the clinical opportunities, student organizations, and being in a capital city provide excellent opportunities, which was a major draw for me."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
After I graduated in 2011, I worked 2 years in financial services and 4 years in recruiting and talent management. My last position in recruitment before I started law school was with Instant Alliance where I managed a team of 4 individuals recruiting people in finance and accounting positions for roles with Fortune 500 companies. Right before I started law school, I worked for a boutique law firm of around 100 attorneys, Lowis & Gellen, in Chicago as a Legal Data Assistant, which was my first foray into the world of business law.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
Doing practice exams and getting feedback from professors is an excellent way to learn how to perform better on exams.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am an Associate with the Wisconsin Law Review, an Associate with the Moot Court Board, the Vice President of Community Affairs for the Student Bar Association, Vice President of Marketing and Outreach for the Jewish Law Student Association, Social Media Chair and Webmaster for the Latino Law Student Association, and Event Coordinator for the State and Local Government Law Society. I also am the captain and player of Intramural Coed and Men’s soccer teams and Coed Sand and Indoor volleyball teams. Lastly, I participate in the Veterans Law Clinic pro bono program and the Domestic Violence Legal Clinic pro bono program in Chicago.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
Over my 1L Winter Break, I did an internship with a chemical manufacturing company in Denver, Colorado working on their Regulatory Affairs. Over my 1L Summer Break, I worked as a Judicial Extern with the Honorable Jesse G. Reyes of the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, in Chicago.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I speak Spanish, French, and English, fluently and am conversant in Russian. I also play violin, piano, guitar, and harmonica.

Victoria Crosby

Victoria Crosby

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
Undergrad: Prairie View A&M University (HBCU), Political Science
Interests: International Law, Criminal Law, Family Law, Estate Planning
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: vcrosby2@wisc.edu

"When I was looking at law schools, I wanted to go somewhere that had a great international program. Though UW does not have as many classes as some schools, it has many of the leading international law scholars teaching at the law school. It also has a great East Asian Legal Studies Center that was interesting to me. I also looked at the diversity of the universities I was accepted to. Wisconsin has more diversity and diverse opportunities for all students to succeed. The environment has been very nurturing and I couldn’t have selected a better school."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The summer before law school I worked at a restaurant as a hostess to save money to move to Madison from Texas.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
One thing I wish I had known about law school was the type of teaching that occurs. The teaching style is different from undergraduate education. I had to adjust a lot to the different style. However, it has taught me to learn in a different way that makes information stick with me better. As for the admissions process, I did a lot of research and didn’t have issues. I helped other people with their process because many students didn’t know that it is better to apply early because most schools had rolling admission and the process was different than undergraduate applications.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
UW BLSA- Director of Education (2017-18) Wisconsin International Law Society – 1L representative (2016-17) Society for Education and Policy Wisconsin International Law Journal National BLSA - National Financial Secretary (2017-18).

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
My first summer of law school I worked at Boardman & Clark LLP. Beginning Spring 2018, I will be doing an externship at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Wisconsin.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I have traveled to over 30 countries and have studied Chinese for 2 year.

Sophia Dolan

Sophia DolanHometown: Mukwonago, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Madison; Sociology and Criminal Justice
Interests: Criminal law, family law, public interest
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: spdolan@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because of the clinical program. When I decided to attend law school, the most important thing to me was a “law in action” approach so that I would get real-world legal experience while still under the supervision of a seasoned attorney. In addition to the clinical opportunities, I really liked the supportive community that Madison has to offer."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked for ARC Community Services as a Relief Counselor in Madison. I took on the overnight shifts working 10pm-8am for a short period of time while the manager looked for full-time staff. My duties during this shift were to assist the women in the household with feedings and take care of babies if their mothers requested help. I also had the opportunity to work for a local law firm and assist with filing bankruptcies. Last summer I also took a road trip to Cleveland, North Dakota to visit a college friend—while there I camped, fished, and listened to a lot of country music.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
One thing I really wish I knew about law school was what the classroom experience was like. My only point of reference was Legally Blonde—although not totally inaccurate, I think it would have been helpful for me to experience what the Socratic method was like before the first day of my Contracts class.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Women’s Law Student Association, Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender, and Society, Intro to Criminal Law Discussion 1L Leader, Tenant Resource Center Housing Counselor.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
During my 1L summer I worked in Legal Assistance to Institutionalized Persons (LAIP) in the Frank J. Remington Center and will be continuing to work there for the school year. So far, I have had the opportunity to learn and research cases of Juvenile Life Without Parole (JLWOP). There are two relevant cases in this area that have been certified to the Supreme Court, which has made it an exciting time to work with these clients and learn how to frame their issues in preparation for the new case law.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was a founding member of the sorority Alpha Xi Delta on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus.

Michele Etienne

Michele Etienne

Hometown: Cape Coral, FL
Undergrad: Barry University, Criminology
Interests: Family law, Labor and Employment, and Insurance
Expected Graduation Date: June 2019
Contact: Metienne@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin because I fell in love with the environment. The law school atmosphere is very collegial, the professors are extremely distinguished, and frankly nothing beats living in the Midwest."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
Prior to law school, I was employed with the United States Army as a paralegal and court reporter in the JAG Corps.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew how important time management was in law school. It was so easy to cram and do well in undergrad, but that is definitely not ideal for law school’s essay exams. Thus, plan ahead, PLAN ahead, PLAN AHEAD is my new mantra.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Black Law Student Association, Wisconsin International Law Journal, Wisconsin Innocence Project, Unemployment Appeals Clinic, and Children’s Justice Project.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
As previously mentioned, I am part of the Wisconsin Innocence Project. I am extremely appreciated of the hands-on opportunity this clinic affords me. Moreover, it is a really great way to practice legal writing, client interviewing, and one’s lawyer-thinking skills.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I work out 4-6 times a week just so I can eat like a food network host.

Tiffany Fameree

Tiffany Fameree

Hometown: Seymour, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Political Science
Interests: Labor & Employment Law, Political Law, Family Law
Expected Graduation Date: December 2018
Contact: tfameree@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because it offers unique experiential learning opportunities while maintaining a high national ranking. The city of Madison also offers a diverse, active, and vibrant community."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I was a nanny for a family in Madison. I also spent as much time as possible with my family and friends.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew how important it was to form study groups. A lot of people think that because of the curve and the competitive nature of law school that the students will not want to help each other, but I found that many students were willing to study together.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am a member of the Student Bar Association, the Women’s Law Student Association, the Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender & Society. I also have been involved with the Unemployment Appeals Clinic and the 1L Orientation Committee.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I spent my first summer working as a Clinical Law Student in the Family Court Clinic. During clinic, I had the opportunity to work directly with clients, draft legal documents, conduct discovery, and attend court proceedings. I spent my second summer working as a law clerk at Herrling Clark Law Firm in Appleton. As a law clerk I was able to improve my research and writing skills as well as observe various legal proceedings.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I love spending time outdoors, especially playing soccer and running.

Allison Gilley

Allison Gilley

Hometown: Livonia, MI
Undergrad: University of Michigan - Political Science & Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience
Interests: Public Interest, Immigration, International Law
Expected Graduation Date: December 2018
Contact: agilley@wisc.edu

"University of Wisconsin stood out because of the clinical opportunities it offers. After arriving and meeting everyone, I was excited to find that there is a true comradery among the students."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked for a healthcare technology nonprofit before coming to law school. I was able to fit in a trip to Sweden and to my hometown right before school started though. Both were great experiences for different reasons!

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I understood how regimented the first year of law school was. I guess I had a false expectation that it would be similar to undergrad and it took me a little bit of time to adjust to the different teaching style.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
PILF, Jackie Macaulay Auction, WILS, Moot Court, Gender Journal.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I spent my summer working in the Immigrant Justice Clinic and it has been a great experience! I have been able to work on U-Visa and acquired citizenship applications. It has been great to be back working with clients and has reminded me why I came to law school, to help people. I look forward to learning more throughout the year!

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was a gymnast for 18 years. Although I don’t do gymnastics anymore, I have switched to running and yoga.

Reza Hajisanei

Reza Hajisanei

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Undergrad: UCLA / History
Interests: Real estate and Bankruptcy
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: Hajisanei@wisc.edu

"The city of Madison, great education for a great value. Friendly environment."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
Worked at Fox Sports in Los Angeles.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew more about different opportunities available to students to cover tuition in addition to the scholarship offered through the school.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
SBA - Vice President of Academic Affairs
Middle Eastern Law Students Association – Co-president
Wisconsin Law Review, Business Editor

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I was a transactional summer associate at Michael Best in Madison this past summer. Returning to Michael Best in 2020 under the litigation group as a bankruptcy associate after completing a one year federal clerkship at the Western District of Wisconsin's Bankruptcy Court.

Any other interesting facts about you?
Migrated to the United States at 9 years old from Iran. Love to cook to relieve stress.

Bri Karega

Bri Karega

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia
Undergrad: Georgia State, Accounting
Interests: Business, Public Policy, Transactional, Litigation
Expected Graduation Date: June 2020
Contact: karega@wisc.edu

"I first applied because my grandparents attended UW Law and loved it. After researching the school, I discovered I really liked the clinic opportunities and the diploma privilege. I visited Madison once with my parents and discovered I really liked this city. It was pretty, with outdoorsy stuff to do and it was not just a college town."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked full time at Cumulus Media as a staff accountant. I also volunteered at some of my favorite charities.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I did not know about the mentorship program. I found that really helpful in my first year and it would have been nice to know about while applying.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am currently in L.A.A.R.J., BLSA and WLSA.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I am a student associate of the Law and Entrepreneurship Clinic. Additionally, in the fall I will begin the Judicial Internship.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I volunteer locally at Simpson Street Free Press.

Lindsey Klarkowski

Lindsey Klarkowski

Hometown: De Pere, WI
Undergrad: University of Minnesota, Biology Society & Environment
Interests: Health Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: lklarkowski@wisc.edu

"I toured multiple law schools before making my decision on which one I would like to attend. The University of Wisconsin Law School stuck out to me because I immediately felt that the faculty and administration put its students first. The atmosphere felt very supportive, and I was impressed with the multitude of experiential learning opportunities available here. Additionally, I have lived in Wisconsin my entire life and knew that I wanted to establish my career here."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?

For the year prior to entering law school, I worked in patient services at a family practice health clinic in my hometown. I took full advantage of being at home by spending time with my family and, of course, going to the Packer games.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had known just how supportive the community at UW Law would be. The student body is incredibly close, and the faculty truly cares about your learning and success.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am a part of the Health Law Student Association and a member of Wisconsin Law Review.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
The summer after my 1L year, I had the opportunity to work at the Center for Patient Partnerships—a clinic here at UW Law School focused on patient advocacy. This experience was a wonderful opportunity for me to work hands-on with clients navigating their way through unique healthcare system challenges.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I grew up riding horses and competed in Equestrian Show Jumping until beginning my undergrad. Skiing and Zumba are also some of my favorite activities.

Gordon Kochman

Gordon Kochman

Hometown: Wilmette, IL
Undergrad: Whitman College – History and Rhetoric
Interests: Admiralty/Maritime Law, Litigation, International Law, and Trade
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: gkochman@wisc.edu

"During my junior year of college, I became homesick and wanted to return back to the Midwest for law school. After applying to and visiting nearby schools, I fell in love with UW Law during its spring admitted students weekend. The people I met have remained my friends and sold me on coming here for school. I have yet to regret my decision!"

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I decided to relax and worked as a beach guard. In my spare time, I went to the Winnetka Historical Society’s archives to continue the research of both my undergraduate thesis and Martin Luther King.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew how compartmentalized legal education can be. While subjects have general principles that build on each other and provide a common lodestar for each corresponding field of law, overlaps are typically glossed over. This means it is a lot harder to get by with questions and not having them answered. Topics will either be used as the building blocks of other doctrines or be something that needs to be known on its own. This is both a blessing and a curse since curious (legal) minds are bound to inquire!

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Maritime Law Society – Founder/President
Wisconsin International Law Journal
Legal Assistance to Institutionalized Persons (LAIP)
Tenant Resource Center
Court Appointed Special Advocates
Middle School Mock Trial – Coach
Moot Court
Mock Trial
Jewish Law Students Association – Treasurer
Associated Students of Madison – Law School Representative

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I find the work with Legal Assistance to Institutionalized Persons (LAIP) to be incredibly rewarding. Having actual clients and being able to impact their lives in real and material ways is a power and a privilege that I hope to use for good. I also enjoy volunteering as a housing counselor with the Tenant Resource Center, since it brings a lot of information from the classroom into reality where situations are less clear-cut and involve a great deal of ambiguity.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I am still interested in maritime law despite my body’s fervent protests: I have allergies to seafood and I get seasick very easily.

Grace Kube

Grace Kube

Hometown: Holmen, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire; Spanish for Business and Latin American Studies
Interests: Public interest, leaning towards immigration
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: gkube@wisc.edu

"Wisconsin was my dream school. It had an emphasis on social justice, had amazing student programs ranging from one of highest respected clinical programs to the Dean’s Cup. I wanted a school that would stretch me academically but also care for me. I was excited about attending a school with Big 10 athletics as well."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I traveled quite a bit and volunteered at a local, immigration law non-profit.

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 although my classmates and I are all here in the same school, taking the same classes, we have vastly different hopes and dreams. This means that what is best for one student might not be best for me. It is easy to constantly compare and worry that I am not doing what I am supposed to be doing based off of my classmates’ actions. It would have been nice to know that we can do very different things in and after law school and still be successful.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I volunteer with Legal Action of Wisconsin and have a Judicial internship. I was on the executive board for the National Lawyer’s Guild and Latina/o Law School Association. I participated in LADR, PILF, Ready to Rent and the Unemployment Appeals Clinic last year.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I interned at the Department of Justice in the Civil Litigation department this summer. I found it to be a very meaningful experience filled with skill building and exposure to ligation. Last summer I worked with the Oxford Federal Project which has been an amazing window into not only the criminal law world but also federal law.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I once spent 72 hours on a bus traveling from Ecuador to Peru. I studied abroad in law school! Yes, its possible, and I can even still graduate early if I want!

Lauren LaCasto

Lauren LaCasto

Hometown: Huntington Beach, CA
Undergrad: Marquette University; English Literature
Interests: I am interested in a wide variety of areas of law (trust and estates, appellate, insurance, health), but I am not sure what type of law I want to go into so I am trying to learn a lot about many different types of law so I can figure out what I am most passionate about.
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: lacasto@wisc.edu

"I chose the University of Wisconsin Law School because it has great professors and a very collegial atmosphere. I also really like the location of the school. The professors at UW Law are all very qualified and accessible to students. Additionally, the law school is not overly competitive. While we are technically competing for the top grades, everyone is very friendly and supportive of one another. Finally, I really like the Madison area. There are a lot of restaurants and shops as well as nature trails and biking paths."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The summer before law school I worked at a law firm near my home in California. The firm I worked for did insurance defense when the insurance company suspected a claim was fraudulent.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had a more realistic description of what law school is like. I am the first person in my family to go to law school so I didn’t have anyone to tell me what to expect. When I started telling people I was going to go to law school everyone just kept telling me how hard and miserable it is and that I would have no free time. One thing I wish I had known is that while it is challenging, the workload is manageable if you take it seriously and treat it like a job. I was able to get all my schoolwork done by working from 8 to 5 every day and was still able to have some free time. A more tangible explanation of the workload rather than a general “law school is going to be the worst” would have been helpful for me to know.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am a co vice president of the Sports and Entertainment Law Society, a member of Moot Court, and a member of the Wisconsin Law Review.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
This summer I worked at the Center for Patient Partnerships (CPP), one of the law school clinics. At the Center we had two sets of clients: our primary CPP clients and clients through one of the UW health clinics. My CPP clients primarily had healthcare related legal issues and the health clinic clients had a wide variety of legal concerns ranging from child custody to eviction. Having both sets of clients allowed me to learn about a lot of different legal issues which I found exciting because I am still not sure what type of law I want to go into.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was the 2017 Dean’s Cup scrabble champion!

Robert Ling III

Robert Ling III

Hometown: I grew up in Anaheim, CA. But I lived in Seattle, WA for six years immediately prior to law school.
Undergrad: Washington University in St. Louis, Computer Science
Interests: Intellectual Property and Business & Transactional
Expected Graduation Date: Spring 2020
Contact: rling@wisc.edu

"I was born in Milwaukee and my family has all kinds of Wisconsin roots, so it was always on my radar. But when I was accepted to UW, I’d actually already committed to another school. The deciding factor for me came down to a meeting with the director of the Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, where I ended up working after my first year. UW is such an institution within Madison and the state that it creates a ton of opportunities for experiential learning experiences and networking."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I quit my job and then flopped around, mostly. Spent some time in the woods working on a book I keep threatening to finish. Spent some time painting. Spent some time playing tabletop wargames competitively. Did some travel.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
How quickly things happen. In my first summer, I’m interviewing for second-summer jobs, which generally convert into fulltime offers. I thought I was ahead of the game by coming to law school with a vague interest in Intellectual Property law, but it turns out that specialization is huge in its own right. Working at the L&E Clinic has really helped me hone in on what I enjoy and what I’m good at, Which I wasn’t expecting to have to do until another year later at least.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I’m on the International Law Journal. I’ll continue to work at the L&E Clinic. I’m in the IP Student Organization.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
So far it’s been the L&E Clinic, mainly. I’ve helped start-up businesses form companies, employ people, offer Terms of Service, file for trademark and patent protection, and more. I’m particularly happy about my work on a EULA for a video game. Back when I was a computer programmer, I always mulled over becoming a game developer. One year into law school and I’ve already contributed work in a shipping video game.

Any other interesting facts about you?
As a “minister” of the (www.) Universal Life Church (.org), I’ve officiated three weddings for friends and family. On the one hand, it’s great public speaking experience for a lawyer. But on the other hand, I’m thinking that judges won’t be quite as predisposed to collapse into joyful sobbing at my words as fathers-of-the-bride tend to be.

Megan Lyneis

Megan Lyneis

Hometown: Mequon, WI
Undergrad: 2017 Edgewood College, Madison WI; Political Science, Sociology
Interests: Criminal Prosecution/Public Defense, Civil and human rights advocacy, legislation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: mlyneis@wisc.edu

"This school was my first choice and I applied during early admissions. I enjoyed my time in Madison as an undergraduate and wanted to stay. But primarily, I wanted to come here because of the student culture and the opportunities to explore my areas of interest. Even though I was familiar with competitive cultures, I wanted my law school experience to be enjoyable and a time where I can build lasting relationships with friends, faculty and staff. Other schools I looked into did not seem to have the same feel; whereas, the people I had spoken to about Wisconsin had great things to say about student life and academics. I found this to be true after my first year here. I have found many good friends, enjoyed my classes and professors, and participated in the opportunities I was looking forward to."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?

I moved back home with my parents to save money before moving into a place in Madison and starting school.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew more about financial aid/scholarship opportunities. Also, more guidance of what it’s like coming straight from undergrad like myself – the learning curve, change in study habits, being in school with people who have more life experience than you, etc.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
SBA 2L representative, WSLA Vice-President of Communications
I also casually attend a great number of events and meetings of other student orgs like WACDL, LLSA, BLSA, etc.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
During this summer, I had the privilege of working in the Remington Center with the Wisconsin Innocence Project. This has been one of the most fulfilling opportunities I have ever had and it has greatly developed my legal skills. I have learned so much not only about the criminal justice system, but also about myself and my capabilities as person and future lawyer. I would recommend this kind of work to anybody, even those who are not convinced criminal work is for them. This work teaches universal lawyering skills while also opening your mind and eyes to the injustices of the legal systems and the great need for good lawyering out there. You meet people from completely different walks of life from your own and grow a greater understanding for their struggle. It challenges you to be a better person and lawyer. And, all the supervising attorneys are great!

Any other interesting facts about you?
I am Puerto Rican but come from a family of immigrants from all over and am so proud of ethnic heritage.

Jennifer Martin

Jennifer Martin

Hometown: Edgar, WI
Undergrad: UW-Madison; Political Science & History with a concentration in Human Rights and Genocide Studies
Interests: Immigration Law, Higher Education Law, Government & Legislative Law, International & Human Rights Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: jennifer.martin@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin because it is an excellent value law school, and is well-regarded in the legal community. I have participated in two of our famed student clinicals, in which I helped my supervising attorneys practice impactful law on behalf of real clients. Wisconsin also helps connect us to pro bono opportunities, which are great ways to learn about different areas of law."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I explored the nearby state and national parks, and really soaked in enjoying biking in and around Madison’s amazing summer!

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I could have had present me tell past me that it even though it’s a challenge, learning the law is fantastic, transformational, and it all works out.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am on the Mock Trial team, volunteer at the local community’s naturalization clinic, and provide volunteer tax assistance to low income Wisconsin residents.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I serve clients pro bono and am assisting a professor in his research in African constitutional law.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I love playing team rec sports in Madison; flag football, kickball, dodgeball, and Frisbee dominate my summers!

Julia Mumm

Julia Mumm

Hometown: Glendale, WI (Milwaukee area)
Undergrad: Saint Louis University – major in Spanish, Economics, and International Studies + minor in Urban Poverty Studies
Interests: Immigration Law, Trusts & Estates, Labor & Employment
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: jjmumm@wisc.edu

"I chose to attend UW because it was the best fit for me in regard to location, clinical opportunities, outstanding academics, and price. First, I liked the idea of being close to home during law school so that I could rely on my family for support in ways that I couldn’t when I was living six hours away in St. Louis. Second, I was attracted to the clinical program at UW, which is phenomenal! I knew I wanted to participate in a clinic and UW offers many excellent clinical options. Third, UW has a reputation for a rigorous academic curriculum that emphasize “law in action” and the professors are incredible. Finally, UW was the best choice for me financially. Overall, I am very happy with my decision to come to UW Law and I have had a great first year!"

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Milwaukee as an Administrative Assistant/ Front Office. I loved working with the students and in a school environment!

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish that I had known that it is possible to balance law school and my personal life. I thought that 1L year would completely consume my whole life, but in reality, it’s definitely feasible, and healthy, to have a balance. You can always make time for the things you prioritize and that are most important to you.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am on the board of the Wellness Coalition as the 1L coordinator and I am the treasurer for the Latin@ Law Student Association. Both of these organizations provide a great community and fun activities to connect with other students.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
During my 1L summer, I participated in the Immigrant Justice Clinic at the law school. Throughout the summer I had my own clients, managed their cases, researched the law, filled out forms, and wrote briefs. I particularly enjoyed meeting with my clients, putting my legal research and writing skills into practice, and going to Dodge County Detention Center once a month to screen detained individuals for eligibility for immigration benefits. The highlight of my summer was appearing before the Immigration Judge at the Chicago Immigration Court advocating for my client. I would highly recommend participating in a clinic during law school!

Any other interesting facts about you?
I love yoga and rock climbing!

Angela O’Brien

Angela O’Brien

Hometown: Wauwatosa, WI
Undergrad: UW-Platteville; International Studies, Spanish; Criminal Justice
Interests: Immigration, civil litigation, civil rights / impact litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: abobrien2@wisc.edu

"I have lived in Wisconsin for almost my entire life. When I was considering going to law school, I never questioned that Wisconsin was where I wanted to be. I applied early decision to Wisconsin because this school was my first choice. I grew up in Milwaukee and came to Madison a lot to visit friends. I loved the vibe of Madison – it is an exciting, vibrant place, the perfect city for young professionals. I was drawn to UW law because of its high ranking, its “law in action” approach, and its wide variety of clinical offerings, externships, and cocurricular activities. I knew I wanted a law school experience that balanced classwork against real life experience, and so Wisconsin was the perfect fit."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The year before law school, I was a full-time volunteer with Border Servant Corps, a volunteer program that placed year-long volunteers with non-profit service sites along the U.S.-Mexico border in El Paso, Texas and Las Cruces, New Mexico. I lived in community with five other volunteers, and together we explored the Borderlands through intentional community, social justice, simplicity, and spirituality. My worksite was Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services, the largest provider of free or low-cost legal immigration services in West Texas. I worked as a Removal Defense Caseworker, which meant I worked under the direct supervision of an immigration attorney and prepared defenses for clients who were facing deportation. I loved the work that I did, and it was the reason I decided to apply to law school.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
Since I was in Texas the year prior, I wasn’t able to take a tour, meet with anyone in admissions, or speak with any current students. I would have liked the opportunity to connect with current students to ask questions, especially since travelling back to Wisconsin wasn’t feasible. I wish I would have reached out to the Admissions Office to see if that would have been a possibility.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am an associate of the Wisconsin Law Review, a competing member of the Moot Court team (Jessup International Law Competition), and a pro bono volunteer for the Community Immigration Law Center.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
My most exciting job in law school so far has been the clinical work I have done with the Immigrant Justice Clinic. I came to law school at UW Law because I knew it had one of the best clinical offerings in this part of the country. This summer, I represented clients directly in two different immigration matters. One involved going to immigration court in Chicago to represent my client at a hearing before an immigration judge. I got to go through preliminary matters with the judge and give an opening statement and a closing argument. The second case involved preparing an affirmative asylum case for a client who has a well-founded fear of future persecution because she testified against a man who had been committing crimes in her home country. We prepared her application and declaration, and are currently preparing her for her interview with the asylum officer, which should be at the end of August.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I love to read (and likely drive my roommate crazy by leaving books all over the apartment), and I am a passionate follower of NFL football and national politics.

Kelly Orth

Kelly Orth

Hometown: Adams-Friendship, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point: Political Science, Public Administration/Policy Analysis, and Sociology
Interests: Criminal Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: korth4@wisc.edu

"UW had such a great reputation, a strong criminal law program, and I love living in Wisconsin. Diploma Privilege and the atmosphere of the law school were both big factors as well."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked in the Portage County District Attorney’s Office.

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 many, many resources available to help out. I didn't know what to expect from both applying and for law school in general. I was afraid to ask admissions offices questions about pretty much everything because I was worried that I might somehow ask the wrong thing and it would reflect badly on me. But I couldn't have been more wrong. The admissions office is very invested in making sure potential students have correct information and are more than willing to help. Once law school begins, there are so many things that exist to help students out- whether it is the Academic Enhancement Program, the Office of Career and Professional Development, or one of the many other resources, all are very interested in helping law students.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am President the UW Law Mock Trial team and participate in the Prosecution Project. In the past, I was a part of the Wisconsin Innocence Project and WACDL.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
My 2L year I was a part of the Wisconsin Innocence Project and it was easily one of the best things I have participated in during law school. I learned so much, made lasting friendships, and changed my perspective on many things. Currently, I am working in the Dane County District Attorney's Office as part of the Prosecution Project. The opportunities and experiences I have had have been amazing. The people I work with are wonderful, and I have been able to do things that many do not do at all, much less prior to graduating. I have been in court, on the record, almost daily and second chaired a jury trial this summer. Overall, I can't say enough good things about the clinics UW offers in general. They are experiences that I think are very beneficial to everyone and would highly recommend them.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I love to read, kayak, and spend time with my family/friends/fiancé.

Gabriel Pollak

Gabriel Pollak

Hometown: Maiden Rock, WI
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Media Studies
Interests: Criminal
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: gpollak@wisc.edu

"High ranking, lots of clinical opportunities/journals, be close to my family."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked on a blueberry farm.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
The skills that are taught in Legal Research and Writing are the same skills that are used to write a law school exam.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Mock trial team and International Law Journal

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I work for the Wisconsin Innocence Project, which is very cool. I had no idea how much I would enjoy doing criminal appellate work.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was a letter carrier for the United States Postal Service.

Kathryn Potratz

Kathryn Potratz

Hometown: Menomonee Falls, WI
Undergrad: Saint Louis University, Psychology & Criminology/Criminal Justice
Interests: Family Law & Elder Law
Expected Graduation Date: December 2019
Contact: Kpotratz@wisc.edu

"I am a proud cheesehead! I knew that I wanted to practice in Wisconsin and UW-Madison has a great law school! I was excited about the opportunity to graduate early and get involved with top ranked clinical opportunities through the university."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a nanny and tried to rest up and prepare for my law school adventure. I also traveled to Disney World, Nassau, Amber Cove, Grand Turk and Vancouver!

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I knew that despite the competitive aspect of the law school environment, UW Law maintains a welcoming and supportive environment that makes law school survivable.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
I am the president of Children’s Justice Project! I also am a member of the Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender and Society.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
I currently work as a legal intern with a local family law firm. I also am a clinical student in the Family Court Clinic. This started during my 1L summer and continues throughout my 2L year. I have developed a passion for family law and could not have asked for better hands on learning experiences!

Any other interesting facts about you?
I studied abroad in Madrid, Spain during undergrad where I also volunteered teaching English to young adults.

Molly Schommer

Molly Schommer

Hometown: Prescott, WI
Undergrad: UW-Madison; Community and Nonprofit Leadership
Interests: Criminal, Governmental and Legislative
Expected Graduation Date: December 2018
Contact: mschommer@wisc.edu

"I’m from Wisconsin and would like to practice law here upon my graduation. Wisconsin is a great school and offers amazing opportunities for connecting with lawyers throughout the state. The diploma privilege and in-state tuition were also swaying factors for me."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I was working as a Youth Minister at Sacred Hearts Catholic Church.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
How much the admissions process and the three years costs. Applications, tuition, books, and living expenses are far more than I was anticipating. A realistic outlook on these expenses and how to manage them would have been helpful.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Mock Trial WACDL (WI Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers) Pro Bono work – CASA and Municipal Defense Project Intramural Sports – football and futsal

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
Oxford Federal Project – I really enjoy going to prison and meeting with my clients. It put into perspective how real these individuals’ lives are and how thankful they are for the work I am doing for them. It solidified for me why I am in law school and continues to drive me to aid these individuals through the system.
Dept. of Military Affairs – I am drafting drone regulations to go to the legislature as a potential bill to pass. I also get a behind the scenes look at emergency management and homeland security issues

Any other interesting facts about you?
I grew up on a dairy farm that has been in my family for 130 years, so I love being outdoors and will jump on any opportunity to do manual labor.

Hannah Stewart

Hannah Stewart

Hometown: Green Bay, WI
Undergrad: Elmhurst College (Elmhurst, IL); Political Science and Communications
Interests: Government/Policy, Litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2020
Contact: hmstewart@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin for the welcoming community and extensive experiential learning programs. Unlike other schools I visited, the students at Wisconsin were supportive, enthusiastic, and proud to be part of the school. Additionally, the opportunity to get practical experience in the field during the school year was very important to me, so Wisconsin was the perfect fit!"

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The summer before law school I finished off a two-year internship with a consulting firms that assists non-profits in fundraising and advocacy. I assisted in coordinating trips to the Illinois Statehouse to meet with legislators to discuss relevant bills and planning fundraising events. Other than that, I spent as much time as I could relaxing and spending time with my family and friends.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I had known how structured 1L year is. All 1Ls take the same classes, so all of your friends are going through the exact same thing, unlike undergrad where everyone had their own unique course load. This is great because everyone understands what you’re going through, but it also means you’re around the same group of people 24/7. Finding another outlet like exercising is key to balancing out the constant stress of law school!

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Wisconsin Law Review, Associate
Volunteer Income Tax Assistant (VITA) Pro Bono Program, 2L Volunteer Coordinator
Student Bar Association, Treasurer, Former 1L Rep.
Wisconsin Public Interest Law Foundation, Auction Chair, Former 1L Rep.
Sports and Entertainment Law Society, Communications Chair
Women’s Law Student Association

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
My 1L summer I clerked at the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Wisconsin. I was able to experience both civil and criminal litigation by working on a variety of projects. In the Fall of my 2L year, I worked as a judicial intern with Justice Annette Kingsland Ziegler of the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Any other interesting facts about you?
When I was in college I was a member of an elite choir that regularly performed professionally in venues such as Carnegie Hall in New York City with artists such as Andrea Bocelli and Renee Fleming.

Alex Straka

Alex Straka

Hometown: Hartland, WI
Undergrad: I completed my bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, majors in Economics and Political Science. I also completed my master’s degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Interests: Business transactional law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: ajstraka@wisc.edu

"I chose Wisconsin Law for two reasons. First, I thought why fix something that isn’t broke? I was already a “Double Badger,” and I loved my time at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as both an undergraduate and a graduate student. Therefore, my return to Wisconsin to obtain a law degree—and become a “Triple Badger”—was a natural fit. Second, Wisconsin Law offered (and still offers) a fantastic value. There are few other law schools where you can earn a law degree from a high caliber, world-renown institution at a relatively affordable cost."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
The summer before law school, I worked as Research Analyst for the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission. In this capacity, I researched analyzed issues in higher education, such as degree completion, college transfer agreements, and diversity hiring in university athletic programs. I capped off the summer by visiting family and friends in Iceland!

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
The decision to attend law school is a big one, but the decision “where” to attend is just as, if not more, important! It is no secret that law school is an expensive endeavor—both in terms of money and time—so you should make sure that you feel comfortable and welcome at the law school you hope to attend. With this in mind, I would recommend every prospective student to visit their top law schools prior to committing to one. You should be as curious and inquisitive as you need to be during this visit so that you can fully assess the school. A visit to your preferred schools should also hopefully give you a better sense of the law school’s experiential course offerings, extracurriculars, culture, and professional development opportunities.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Through my law school career, I have been involved with QLaw, the LGBT Bar Association of Wisconsin, and the Center for Russia, East Europe and Central Asia here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I have also worked as a teaching and research assistant for various academic departments and professors.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
Wisconsin Law has offered so many opportunities to me as a law student. These opportunities have included the following:

  • 1L Year: Teaching assistant for the Political Science Department.
  • 1L Summer: Law clerk at Northwestern Mutual in Milwaukee.
  • 2L Year: Research assistant to Professor Kathryn Hendley.
  • 2L Summer: Summer associate at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in Chicago.
  • 3L Year: Judicial intern to Justice Ann Walsh Bradley of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, Research Assistant to Professor Kathryn Hendley, and, of course, Student Ambassador!

Any other interesting facts about you?
I frequently “sleep-walk” and “sleep-eat.” On a different note, I am currently learning Icelandic, which according to UnBabel Blog is one of the world’s most difficult and complex languages to learn.

Emma Szcupakiewicz

EmmaSzczupakiewicz

Hometown: Muskego, WI
Undergrad: Miami University (OH), Political Science
Interests: Civil Litigation
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: szczupakiewi@wisc.edu

"I wanted to come back home to Wisconsin and still attend a prestigious law school."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked for the University of Wisconsin Athletic Department in the Compliance Office.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I would have known more about how the University awards financial aid.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Sports and Entertainment Law Society; Women’s Law Student Association; Wisconsin Law Review.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
The best externship I’ve had is with the Wisconsin Department of Justice in the Solicitor General’s office. I worked with extremely talented appellate lawyers, some who clerked for Supreme Court Justices.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was a student-athlete in college on the swim team.

Gya’ Williams

Gya’ Williams

Hometown: Beloit, WI
Undergrad: University of Southern California – Public Policy and Law
Interests: Education, Labor & Employment, Civil Litigation & Criminal Defense, Sports & Entertainment Law
Expected Graduation Date: May 2019
Contact: gbwilliams@wisc.edu

"Growing up in Wisconsin, I knew that it was important for me to have the opportunity to give back to the community that raised me. When I visited UW Law I was blown away by how down to earth and supportive everyone was. Also, I loved the possibility that I would be involved in Wisconsin’s clinical programs and really get the opportunity to learn the law by advocating for clients."

What did you do the summer before you started law school?
I worked as a legal intern at the Federal Defender’s Program in downtown Chicago, Illinois. Working for the Federal Defender’s Program gave me a valuable insight into criminal law.

What is one thing you wish you knew about law school or the admissions process ahead of time?
I wish I would have known how to prepare for law school exams. The exams we take at the end of the semester are unlike anything that I have ever experienced. There is strategy before and during the exam that needs to be perfectly executed for you to give your best performance.

What student organizations or activities are you involved in?
Currently, I am a Moot Court Board Member, the Vice President of the Black Law Student Association and the Secretary of the Sports and Entertainment Law Society.

Discuss any exciting jobs or internships you’ve had while in law school.
During this last summer, I worked for the Wisconsin Innocence Project. The experience was truly one of a kind. I was exposed to drafting memos, motions and interviewing incarcerated clients. I learned so much about myself and how I want to represent my future clients in court.

Any other interesting facts about you?
I was in a Gospel choir in college.

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