Meet the Student Ambassadors

Notre Dame Law School’s Student Ambassadors are hand-selected by the admissions team and serve as professional student leaders to interact with prospective students. They are involved on campus, optimistic, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and often the first interaction potential law students have with the Law School. As the true faces of NDLS, they offer unique views and serve to welcome future Domers into our community.


Megan Ball, 1L

Hometown: Clive, IA

Undergraduate study: University of Notre Dame, B.A. ’16, majoring in history honors and theology

Legal work: Interned for Senator Chuck Grassley and worked during many breaks at Brick Gentry Law Firm in West Des Moines, Iowa

Student organizations: 1L Rep for both Jus Vitae and Federalist Society

Future plans and aspirations: I am hoping to clerk and pursue transactional work in the Chicago area. Particular interest in real estate, land use, and probate.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose Notre Dame Law because of the unbeatable community. Both the supportive, familial community on campus and the extensive alumni network beyond. NDLS’s mission to educate a different kind of lawyer most directly matched my own desire to be a distinctive legal professional.


Theresa Barton, 1L

Hometown: Martinsburg, WV

Undergraduate study: University of Notre Dame, B.A. ’16, majoring in psychology

Student organizations: Research Assistant in Dr. Kristin Valentino’s Development and Psychopathology Lab (still a member)

Future plans and aspirations: Undecided on the field of law in which I want to practice but I do know that I would love to be working for a firm in Chicago after graduation.

Why did you choose NDLS?: Notre Dame has been my home for the past four years and I can’t imagine attending a more special University. For me, the proximity to Chicago, the accomplished professors and supportive alumni network, and the football Saturdays were reasons enough to choose Notre Dame Law School. But those reasons for choosing NDLS could also be said of countless universities. You won’t really know “Why Notre Dame” until you step onto campus. And I promise, as soon as you do, you will feel how incredibly special this place is. I am so lucky to be pursuing my legal education here at Notre Dame as I learn how to become a “Different Kind of Lawyer”, and there is nowhere else I would rather call home.


Ariell Bratton, 3L

Hometown: Mesa, Ariz.

Undergraduate study: University of Arizona, B.S. ’13, majoring in molecular and cellular biology

Legal work: Worked this past summer in patent litigation at Paul Hastings, San Diego. In 2015, in IP litigation at Lathrop & Gage in Chicago
Student organizations: SBA treasurer, executive editor of JLEPP, treasurer of Intellectual Property Law Society, American Bar Association representative in SBA

Future plans and aspirations: to be a patent litigator

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because it was the perfect balance of what I was looking for. It would give me a nationally and even globally recognized alma matter, a strong network of alumni, and classes that were broad enough I could explore but focused enough I could hone in on my craft. I come away with so much more including lifelong friends, mentors, and memories.


Nicholas Burandt, 1L

Hometown: Cincinnati, OH

Undergraduate study: DePaul University, Double Major in international studies and arabic studies

Extracurriculars: Former Legal Records Clerk for Wilson Elser law firm in Chicago, Illinois. Current member of the Volunteer Lawyers Network, an organization helping to pair pro bono lawyers with individuals in the South Bend community who cannot afford legal aid.

Future plans and aspirations: Litigation and Federal Bureau of Investigations

Why did you choose NDLS?: All law schools will teach you the basic legal principles found in every casebook. But Notre Dame Law School offers so much beyond the traditional classroom setting. There are not only several clinical opportunities on Notre Dame’s campus but also the ability to spend semesters in London, Chicago, or Washington, D.C.. The countless extracurricular activities on campus—like intramural sports and service projects—make attending law school more enjoyable. I chose Notre Dame to not just receive a first-rate education but to enjoy studying the law in a community I am proud to be a part of.

Stephen Canoza, 1L

Hometown: Chicago, IL

Undergraduate study: Georgetown University, majoring in Finance and International Business, 2007

Legal work: Prior to attending NDLS, I spent 9 years in Washington, D.C. working as a forensic litigation consultant to the financial services industry. In my capacity, I advised financial services firms and their legal counsel on accounting, financial, and economic issues related to complex commercial disputes and regulatory investigations.

Student organizations: Mentor to undergraduate students enrolled in Georgetown’s undergraduate business school, and volunteer for student programming initiatives supporting high-need Georgetown scholarship recipients from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds.

Future plans and aspirations: I would like to return to Washington, D.C. after graduation to work in a public interest law capacity, ideally in the area of securities regulation or enforcement.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS for its academic rigor, its supportive and collegial student environment, and because I believe that many of its core values complement my own – namely, that the legal profession has a duty to advance social justice issues, and that legal practitioners should be stewards for positive social change.

Kaeleigh Christie, 1L

Hometown: Howell, NJ

Undergraduate study: The George Washington University, B.A. ’16, majoring in political science and criminal justice

Student organizations: Orientation Committee of the SBA, Intellectual Property Law Society, The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies

Future plans and aspirations: I plan to pursue a career in national security and cyber security law. I hope to one day be General Counsel to a defense contracting company.

Why did you choose NDLS?: As a long-time Fighting Irish fan, being a Notre Dame student has always been a dream of mine. I was especially drawn to Notre Dame Law School for its mission to educate “a Different Kind of Lawyer.” I decided on NDLS as the result of the array of opportunities this education provides, which includes being taught by top professors, having access to an esteemed alumni network, and belonging to a community that values tradition, service, and faith.


Dayle Comerford, 1L

Hometown: Glen Ellyn, IL

Undergraduate study: Haveford College, B.A. ’15, majoring in psychology with a minor in economics

Legal work: Before attending law school, I worked at DLA Piper as an intern in the litigation department for 3 summers (2013-2015) and as the Pro Bono Project Assistant for the summer of 2016.

Student organizations: In addition to being a class host, I currently serve on SBA’s athletic committee and will be an active member of SCELF.

Future plans and aspirations: My goal since grade school has been to become a lawyer for the sports industry. While I currently am most interested in intercollegiate athletics, I love learning about new possibilities and opportunities of using a law degree in sports. As a law student at Notre Dame, I hope to gain experience in the industry and look forward to connecting with alumni who are currently working in the sports industry.

Why did you choose NDLS?: NDLS allows me to pursue my career goal while being close Chicago where I grew up. I loved the atmosphere and people when I visited, not to mention my deep love for football. Notre Dame was the best overall fit for me and it was the best decision I could have made.


Megan Davis, 3L

Hometown: Austin, Texas

Undergraduate study: Texas A&M University, B.A. ’14, majoring in psychology and english

Legal work: During the summer of 2015 I interned for Justice John Devine of the Supreme Court of Texas. During my 2L summer I completed six weeks as a summer associate in the litigation section at Jackson Walker, LLP in Austin, Texas, and six weeks as a summer associate in the litigation and business transactions sections at Andrews Kurth, LLP in Houston, Texas.

Student organizations: During my 3L year, I am involved in the following organizations: admissions ambassador, vice president of the Notre Dame Student Animal Legal Defense Fund, notes editor for the Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy, research assistant to Professor Jim Seckinger, and participant in the London Law Programme. During my 2L year, I was involved in the following organizations: admissions ambassador, secretary of the Notre Dame Student Animal Legal Defense Fund, staff member for the Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy, member of the Notre Dame Barrister’s Mock Trial Team, research assistant to Professor Jim Seckinger, and Notre Dame Student Bar Association admissions committee co-chair.

Future plans and aspirations: After law school, I will be joining Jackson Walker, LLP in Austin, Texas as an associate in the litigation section.

Why did you choose NDLS?: First and foremost, NDLS, as well as the greater Notre Dame community, is an extremely welcoming environment. I noticed immediately during my Admitted Student Weekend that the students, professors, and staff at NDLS are truly spectacular. They are constantly willing to sacrifice time and energy to assist one another, and to make all students feel at home at NDLS. This sense of community stays with NDLS students and staff once they leave Notre Dame, and makes for a fantastic, helpful alumni network. Additionally, I realized very quickly that NDLS could provide me with unique opportunities. From taking the opportunity to study abroad in London, to finding my dream job in my desired market, NDLS opened doors for me that I didn’t see happening elsewhere. NDLS is a renowned institution that provides its students with incredible opportunities across the globe — I couldn’t pass up that offer!


Matthew Doherty, 1L

Hometown: Sewell, N.J.

Undergraduate study: University of Notre Dame, B.A. ’15, majoring in the program of liberal studies

Legal work: Law Clerk – U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Indiana (South Bend Division), Summer 2016; Legal Extern, Fall 2016

Student organizations: SBA Merchandise Committee Chair; Admissions Office Student Ambassador

Future plans: Litigation

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose Notre Dame law because it offered exactly what I was looking for in an academic community. As an undergrad at ND, I came to love the welcoming community it fostered and began to see this place as my home. When it came time to decide on a law school, I knew that there was no place comparable to Notre Dame. Its beautiful campus, strong moral focus, and emphasis on educating a “different kind of lawyer” all combine to make ND the perfect place for a legal education. Notre Dame is more than a school; it’s a place where you will grow as an individual and one that you will cherish well beyond your time as a student."


Sebastian Fischer, 1L

Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA

Undergraduate University: The Ohio State University, B.A. ’16 in philosophy and international relations and diplomacy

Student organizations: FPAC (networking committee chair), Honor Council 1L representative

Future plans and aspirations: Clerk for a federal judge before working for the US Attorney’s Office

Why did you choose NDLS?: I decided to enroll at NDLS because of the strong alumni network and the school’s desire to not only prepare better lawyers, but better citizens.


Pete Gonzales, 1L

Hometown: Aurora, IL

Undergraduate study: University of Notre Dame, B.A. ’16, majoring in the program of liberal studies with minors in economics and public policy

Student organizations: SBA 1L rep, HLSA 1L rep, 1L ACS rep

Future plans and aspirations: Big law, public service, and helping people.

Why did you choose NDLS?: ND law gave me the perfect environment to combine my passion for service and quest for career opportunities. We’re not afraid to discuss what’s right in conjunction with what’s legal and I found people here who passionately pursue that conversation too. I wanted to be a different kind of lawyer, so there’s nowhere better to be than Notre Dame.


Bill Green, 1L

Hometown: Homer Glen, IL

Undergraduate study: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, B.A. ’12, majoring in political science and minoring in german

Student organizations: 1L Representative, Public Interest Law Forum

Future plans and aspirations: I’m not entirely sure how I want to use my law degree immediately after school, but I aspire to be a judge during my legal career.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because, simply, it’s Notre Dame. The aura, the history, the sheer class of the institution and its professors is cemented the moment you walk in the doors. When I came for admitted students’ weekend, I knew there was no longer a choice in the matter.

Samantha Harris, 1L

Hometown: Thousand Oaks, California

Undergraduate study: Pepperdine University, B.A. ’11, majoring in political science and minoring in history

Graduate study: Pepperdine University School of Public Policy, M.P.P. ’14 specialized in economics and international relations

Student organizations: Sports, Communications and Entertainment Law Forum; Federalist Society; Environmental Law Society; Intellectual Property Law Society

Future plans and aspirations: Animal Rights Law or Constitutional Law

Why did you choose NDLS?: I was looking for an institution that produced not only excellent lawyers, but lawyers with a purpose and a sense of duty to society. The obvious attributes of Notre Dame Law School caught my attention at the beginning – outstanding faculty, phenomenal alumni network, national reputation, emphasis on tradition – but the more I learned about the school, the more I realized that they truly do educate a different kind of lawyer.

Kendra Key, 1L

Hometown: Shreveport, Louisiana

Undergraduate study: Louisiana State University-Shreveport, B.A., B.S. ’12, in criminal justice and sociology; and Indiana State University, B.A. ’14, majoring in language studies.

Legal work: During the summer of 2015 I interned for Justice John Devine of the Supreme Court of Texas. During my 2L summer I completed six weeks as a summer associate in the litigation section at Jackson Walker, LLP in Austin, Texas, and six weeks as a summer associate in the litigation and business transactions sections at Andrews Kurth, LLP in Houston, Texas.

Student organizations: I am currently a Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity fellow as well as Notre Dame Black Law Student Association 1L Representative and Student Board Association member on the merchandise committee. I have also written for the Student Bar Association blog, ndlsraisingthebar.

Future plans and aspirations: I am currently interested in international law, as well as criminal law, and human rights.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I came to Notre Dame because, to me, it offered the whole package. It is a top institution with an amazing alumni network, national recognition, and it offered a strong support system both through faith-based and social groups within the law school as well as through family nearby.


Hans Kessler, 3L

Hometown: Lancaster, Penn.

Undergrad study: University of Pittsburgh, B.A. “14, majoring in political science and history

Legal work: Pennsylvania Governor’s Office of General Counsel (Summer 2015); summer associate at K&L Gates LLP in Pittsburgh (Summer 2016)

Student organizations: Vice president, Student Bar Association, Law Review, SBA Athletics Committee

Future plans and aspirations: I will be working at a firm in Pittsburgh next summer

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because it felt like a place I could call home. NDLS’ catchphrase is educating “A Different Kind of Lawyer”, and I think this is true because we attract a different kind of student. NDLS is place where people care about you as a person. From your classmates, to the professors, to the administration, there will always be someone who is willing to help.


Hillary Krill, 2L

Hometown: Erie, Penn.

Undergraduate study: Allegheny College, B.A. ’15, majoring in environmental studies and minoring in french

Future practice area aspirations: Environmental law or international law

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose Notre Dame Law School because I want to become a "different kind of lawyer,” a lawyer who approaches legal issues with a strong educational background and ethical principles. The Notre Dame community is extraordinary and provides me with the support and connections that will greatly assist me my legal career. The competitive yet collaborative community at Notre Dame Law School is a work environment where I can explore my passion for law and my professional development.


Anthony Kroese, 3L

Hometown: Buffalo, N.Y.

Legal work: I worked with the Business and Commercial practice group of Goldberg Segalla in the Buffalo, NewYork, office. I also took on a role with the firm’s Insurance group. In addition, I assisted in research and creating product for the firm’s Sports Law blog.

Undergraduate study: Canisius College; B.A. ’14, majoring in political science

Student organizations: Student Bar Association, social chair; American Bar Association, representative; Admissions Office, fellow; Journal of College and University Law, editor

Future plans and aspirations: I will be returning to Goldberg Segalla.

“Why did you choose NDLS?: Notre Dame was my first choice because of the strong commitment to academic excellence. The philosophy behind becoming a “Different Kind of Lawyer” resonated with me, helping me to understand that in order to truly live that mission, a legal education must be a commitment to a lifelong education that goes far beyond Notre Dame. To be fully prepared to live within the legal community, a Notre Dame education, focusing on the transformation of the mind, body, and spirit, is the best education to make the enriching connections with colleagues, professors, and alumni that lead to long term success.


Michael Kubik, 1L

Hometown: Crystal Lake, IL

Undergraduate University: University of Michigan, B.A. ’16, majoring in philosophy

Legal work: Between my sophomore and junior year (Summer 2014) in undergrad I interned with Polsinelli, a law firm in Chicago.

Student organizations: I am one of the 1L reps for the Innocence Project Club and I am a member of the Intellectual Property Society as well as the Food & Beverage Law Society

Why did you choose NDLS?: Short answer is the community, the alumni network, the proximity to Chicago, and all of the US News stats. Long answer is I was drawn to Notre Dame for a variety of reasons. Obviously the US News rank and employment statistics and proximity to Chicago and all of those types of things were a draw, but the same could be said of any other Midwest school of Notre Dame’s caliber. What made this place distinct and what ultimately swayed my decision was – and I say this with full awareness of how cliché it sounds – the community. I was torn between ND and two other schools and it was at the admitted student weekend that I made my decision. Every school tells you how great their community is, that it is a collaborative environment, that things are not overly competitive. Most of the schools feel like they say that through gritted teeth. Notre Dame was the only one that felt like they meant it. You could see the friendships as you walked around campus and through the school. I saw in Notre Dame an opportunity not just to build valuable business connections, but to build friendships. It felt like finding family. The other schools could not sell me that same feeling. I am glad to say that my experience so far has validated my decision.


Sami Lyew, 3L

Hometown: Atlanta

Undergrad study: Auburn University, B.A. ’14, majoring in political science with a concentration in public administration

Legal work: 1L summer spent at Chick-fil-A, Inc. with the legal department. 2L summer spent at the Securities and Exchange Commission with the Office of Inspector General.

Student organizations: Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Legislation, student ambassador, SBA Merchandise Committee

Why did you choose NDLS?: I wanted to go to a law school where I felt part of a community, and that’s what I found at NDLS — a community of brilliant professors, a community full of school spirit, a community of caring, genuine, and true friends, a supportive community outside the university, and an alumni community that I could connect with and one day join. NDLS is unlike any other law school, and I am thankful to attend a prestigious university that also features such a close-knit community.


Alyssa McClure, 1L

Hometown: Buffalo, N.Y.

Undergrad study: University at Buffalo, B.A., ’16 majoring in psychology and social science interdisciplinary, concentration in legal studies

Student organizations: SBA Admissions Committee, Women’s Legal Forum, Public Interest Law Forum

Future plans and aspirations: I am interested in litigation, in either a civil or criminal context. I also hope to clerk in a federal court upon graduation.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I am unsure in what city I want to practice after graduation, and Notre Dame’s extensive alumni network gives me the opportunity to explore options across the country. Notre Dame’s national reputation and its welcoming, collegial environment solidified my decision. I wanted to attend a law school where I felt at home, and I have found that in the community of students, professors and faculty at Notre Dame.


Thomas McHugh, 2L

Hometown: East Islip, N.Y.

Undergraduate study: Villanova University, B.S. B.A. ’12 majoring in biology and communications

Student organizations: Legal Aid Society – Juvenile Rights Practice (Summer 2015) Journal of Legislation; Moot Court Board oralist; Galilee: Justice at Work alumni chair; assistant rector at O’Neill Hall

Future plans and aspirations: to work in New York City

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose to come to NDLS because of the incredible alumni network across the country. I have thoroughly enjoyed meeting other “Domers” in different parts of the country and being a part of the Notre Dame tradition has come to mean a great deal to me in my time at the Law School. I am certain that I made the right decision in choosing NDLS because of the fantastic education I’ve received, the outstanding people that I’ve met, and the countless opportunities that the University has afforded me.


Emmanuel McMiller, 1L

Hometown: West Palm Beach, Florida

Undergraduate study: Williams College, B.A. ’14, majoring in political science

Legal work: Legal Assistant at Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb, P.A. for two years between college and law school

Student organizations: Student Bar Association-Alumni Relations Committee, Black Law Student Association

Future plans and aspirations: I am currently aiming to become an appellate lawyer in the D.C. area after law school.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because of its national reputation, strong alumni network, experienced professors, and its mission to train a different kind of lawyer to make a difference in the legal field.


Lauren Nottoli, 3L

Hometown: Columbia, S.C.

Undergraduate study: University of South Carolina, B.A. ’13, majoring in public relations and political science. I took off one year to serve as a Collegiate Leadership Consultant for Gamma Phi Beta Sorority.

Legal work: South Carolina Attorney General’s Office, extern for the Chief District Judge for the District of South Carolina, Edelman

Student organizations: President, Student Bar Association, 7th Circuit Advocate on Moot Court Board, Federalist Society member

Future plans and aspirations: Following graduation I will serve as a Staff Judge Advocate in the U.S. Coast Guard.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose Notre Dame because of the academic community. The professors, students, and staff here are incredibly welcoming and devoted to our success. When I visited the law school and walked around campus I instantly knew this was a place I wanted to be. Also, the school’s mission to “educate a different kind of lawyer,” in that a Notre Dame lawyer fundamentally acts in service to others, really resonated with me. I served on active duty for 8 years before arriving at Notre Dame and the culture and values here are very similar. This is the great place to be and I’m incredibly proud to be a student at NDLS.

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Colleen O’Connor, 1L

Hometown: Delmar, N.Y.

Undergraduate study: Duke University, B.A. ‘14, majoring in psychology and women’s studies

Legal work: Before law school, I was a paralegal at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

Student organizations: Member of Women’s Legal Forum, Alumni Interviewer for Duke University

Future plans and aspirations: I am hoping to work at the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose to go to Notre Dame because of the community. When I visited NDLS, I felt at home. I knew I would be able to thrive in the supportive law school community.


Harkesh Patel, 1L

Hometown: Potomac Falls, VA

Undergraduate study: University of Virginia, B.A. ’13, majoring in economics and government

Legal work: I worked in a support role in the Washington, DC office of a global law firm for three years prior to coming to Notre Dame. I hope to return to a corporate transactional practice in Washington after NDLS.

Student organizations: Member, Community Service Committee of the Student Bar Association [also a volunteer at the Volunteer Lawyer Network]

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS for its excellent academic reputation as well as its goal of educating a “different kind of lawyer.” While this was an idea that resonated with me as I researched the law school, my campus visit reaffirmed to me the school’s commitment to developing the individual and serving the community. In my experience, students are taught by brilliant legal minds in a collegial atmosphere and presented with many faith and service-based opportunities to grow beyond the classroom as well.


Matt Pekoske, 1L

Hometown: Woodbridge, VA

Undergraduate study: U.S. Coast Guard Academy, B.S. ’08, majoring in government.

Legal work: I will be interning at a U.S. Coast Guard legal office this summer.

Student organizations: Future Prosecuting Attorney’s Council, Military Law Student’s Association, International Law Club

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because (1) it is a national school with an incredibly alumni network that helps you accomplish any goal you want to as an attorney, and (2) because NDLS teaches you how to be a lawyer while encouraging you every single day to never lose sight of your values. In my view, that is what makes me a different kind of lawyer.


Katelyn Ringrose, 1L

Hometown: Etna, CA

Undergraduate study: University of California, Davis, B.A. ’14, majoring in english literature

Legal work: Co-owner of Impowerus, Winner of the McCloskey Business Pitch Competition

Student organizations: LGBT Law Forum First-Year Representative, member of the National Lawyer’s Guild and the Women’s Legal Forum.

Future plans and aspirations: Immigration and family law, litigation.

Why did you choose NDLS?: Before coming to Notre Dame Law, I aided refugee and immigrant children through the naturalization process. Hearing my students describe fleeing their homes, suffering abuse, and witnessing the destruction of their culture inspired me to follow my goals of practicing international and immigration law and protecting the rights of those most vulnerable to abuses. I am continuously inspired by Notre Dame’s mission to “assist the world in creating justice grounded in love.”


Jonathan Schall, 1L

Hometown: Wyoming, PA

Undergraduate University: University of Scranton, B.S. ’13, majoring in biology

Student organizations: I am a member of the Federalist Society, the St. Thomas More Society, the Intellectual Property Law Society, and the Notre Dame Knights of Columbus.

Future plans and aspirations: At this time, I am considering a number of possible career paths, but look to one day practice in my home state, Pennsylvania.

Why did you choose NDLS?: Notre Dame stands not only as an exceptional law school, but as a remarkably collegial community as well, and that community draws on the talents and strengths of the greater Notre Dame Family in addition to the diverse perspectives within the Law School. Here, we are challenged to go beyond just learning the law, charged to contemplate issues of justice, morality, and ethics at all levels of our study and careers. Even this early in my first year, I already have wonderful relationships with professors and classmates who are supportive and inspiring. Notre Dame is a wonderful place to learn, work, and grow.


Samantha Scheuler. 2L

Hometown: Kansas City, MO

Undergraduate University: University of Missouri, B.A. ’14, majoring in english and minoring in leadership and public service, and french

Legal work: Office of General Counsel at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington D.C. as part of the Law School’s Church, State and Society Fellowship

Student organizations: Women’s Legal Forum, Health Law Society, Federalist Society, St. Thomas More Society (1L Representative), Moot Court Trial Team, Assistant Rector in Pasquerilla East Hall

Future plans and aspirations: I hope to have a career in healthcare law, with the end goal being General Counsel for a hospital. This summer I will be interning with Health and Human Services in D.C., specifically with the Departmental Appeals Board.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS during my own Admitted Students Weekend, almost two years ago. I have to admit, I wasn’t particularly excited to be spending my spring break visiting South Bend in the dead of March, but almost instantly after arriving at the law school I knew I was in a special place. It was special for reasons beyond the reasons which prompted me to apply to ND in the first place— the national name, incredible alumni base, impressive faculty. During the time I spent at the law school that weekend every other minute I was struck by how special the community is. Before I visited ND I had this preconceived notion that law school was going to be a very individual, competitive, stressful, and rather dreadful three years. Simply put, my visit to NDLS opened my eyes to what my law school experience could be. As soon as I stepped foot in the building it became incredibly evident how genuinely kind and friendly everyone was here. I spoke to 1Ls, 2Ls and even 3Ls who were more than eager to introduce themselves to us prospective students. Throughout the weekend it was clear to me that everyone knew each other, and more importantly, everyone was friends. Even when I spoke with professors, I was blown away by their humility, their passion for teaching, and their obvious commitment to “educating a different kind of lawyer.”

Now that I am in my second year at NDLS, I can say for certain that all of these things about NDLS that impressed me during my Admitted Students Weekend are abundantly true. The community here really is different, and that can be seen at every level from the Deans, to the faculty, the administrators, and among the students. At NDLS not only do your professors want you to be successful, your classmates want you to succeed and you want to see them succeed as well. In my experience, ND was and is different than a lot of other law schools in this way, while still offering a high caliber and challenging legal education to its students.


AJ Simonton, 1L

Hometown: Indianapolis, IN

Undergraduate University: Morehouse College, B.A. ’14, majoring in political science

Student organizations: Student Bar Association First-Year Representative, Black Law Student Association, American Constitutional Society

Future plans and aspirations: This Summer, I will be working for a law firm in my hometown of Indianapolis. I hope to explore various practice groups this summer and in-house counsel next summer. Long term, I will run for office.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose Notre Dame because the Law School seeks to educate “a Different Kind of Lawyer,” a legal professional who uses his/her knowledge of the law for the greater good whether as a public interest lawyer or attorney with a multi-national law firm. Service is very important to me and, regardless what law I choose to practice, I want to make a the world a better place.

Jessica Skocik, 1L

Hometown: St. Louis, MO

Undergraduate study: Penn State University, B.S. and B.A.’13, majoring in criminology and sociology

Legal work: Since graduating, I have served as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for St. Charles County which included writing court reports and appearing before the judge to advocate for the needs of a child victimized by abuse, as well as maintaining a weekly visit schedule with the client. I also worked in a post-adjudication residential treatment center for youth in St. Louis County.

Student organizations: At NDLS, I am a member of the SBA Orientation Committee, and a 1L representative for the International Human Rights Society.
Future Plans: I am interested in studying human rights law in both domestic and international contexts, specifically the reconciliation of tradition/religion/culture and modern human rights law.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS, because I felt like I belonged here. To a large extent, the opportunities in Human Rights Law and the presence of the Center for Civil and Human Rights guided my application. But the Admitted Students Weekend and my communication with current students, alumni, and faculty members carried my decision. I knew at NDLS that I would want for nothing. In fact, everywhere else I looked left me wanting something I knew NDLS would provide me. It was everything I dreamed law school would be and so much more.


Josie Sucheki, 1L

Hometown: Rolling Meadows, IL

Undergraduate University: University of Kentucky, B.A., majoring in political science and psychology with minors in spanish and leadership studies

Legal work: I worked as a deposition clerk for a small Chicago firm during undergrad

Student organizations: SBA Orientation Committee, Women’s Legal Forum

Future plans and aspirations: I would love to move back to the Chicago area and practice family law. I have a passion for children and advocating for those who cannot legally speak for themselves. Eventually, I would like to serve as a juvenile court judge in Chicago and use my undergraduate specialty of developmental psychology to aid the youth in the city today.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I grew up a Notre Dame fan and it has always been my dream to attend school here. I came to my first football game when I was 9 and promised myself I would make those dreams happen. I attended a prospective student visit and fell in love with the cohesiveness and strength of everyone in the Law School and I quickly realized this was a place where I could prosper and grow.


Jenna-Marie Tracy, 1L

Hometown: Sparta, NJ

Undergraduate University: Ramapo College of New Jersey, B.S. ’16, majoring in biology/chemistry

Student organizations: IPLS Society 1L Rep, Spiritual Life Committee

Future plans and aspirations: I am interested in pursuing a career in IP law, specifically patent prosecution or litigation.

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because it felt like home. I was sold on Notre Dame after I visited and observed how friendly and helpful the students were. I expected law school to be a cut-throat and competitive atmosphere that would not encourage a community spirit. Notre Dame is just the opposite. The community here is supportive and incredibly welcoming. After my visit, I knew I wanted to be a part of that.


Chinelo Udokoro, 2L

Hometown: Atlanta, GA

Undergraduate University: Georgia State University, majoring in criminal justice

Legal work: Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project, Summer Intern

Student organizations: Black Law Students Association, Vice President; Badin Hall, Resident Assistant

Future plans and aspirations: Practice transactional law in Los Angeles

Why did you choose NDLS?: I chose NDLS because of its international status. I chose NDLS because of its national presence and the flexibility it would provide during my job search. I chose to stay at NDLS because of the “Notre Dame Family” I created. I chose to stay at NDLS because of the outstanding faculty and the beauty and accessibility of the Catholic social teaching.


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