Real practice experience at NDLS

Author: Brooke Zentmeyer

Lauren Nottoli, 3L
Student Bar Association President

Choosing a law school can be a very difficult decision, and it is definitely a very important one. There are a lot of factors to consider, and sometimes you don’t know what factors can be most important. In my opinion, one of the most critical things to consider is the availability of practical experience you can get before you graduate law school.

There are many ways in which NDLS offers practical experiences that you simply cannot get anywhere else — I am currently participating in two of those programs. First, as a member of the Notre Dame Moot Court Board, I am able to participate in tournaments on behalf of Notre Dame. The aspect of being on the Moot Court Board that I’m so excited about, however, is the opportunity I have this year to argue a real case in front of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Along with four of my classmates on the Seventh Circuit team, we are representing real clients and work with a local attorney to write our briefs, and prepare our own oral arguments. This is the type of experience that some practicing lawyers will never have in their lifetime.

Also, an experience I had last year was to participate in our Intensive Trial Advocacy class. We conducted both jury and trials before a judge in January 2016. The program is “intensive” because we spent eight days being taught by attorneys, judges, and professors from both near and far before the spring semester even began.

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals externship and ITA don’t even scratch the surface of what is available at NDLS. When you visit NDLS, be sure to ask about the skills courses, clinics, and externship opportunities. With five clinics and externships with public defenders, prosecutors, the NCAA, corporate counsel, you’ll be able to find a way to get real, practical experience at NDLS no matter what your interest may be.

Originally from Columbia, South Carolina, Lauren Nottoli received her bachelor of arts in public relations, advertising and applied communication from the University of South Carolina. Nottoli is currently serving as the Student Bar Association president, a Seventh Circuit advocate on Notre Dame Moot Court Board, and a student ambassador. During her 1L summer, Nottoli worked at the Sexually Violent Predator section of the South Carolina Attorney General’s office and interned for a judge in the Federal District Court for the District of South Carolina. Last summer she worked at Edelman in Washington, D.C..