Mahira Siddiqui

To be [a lawyer] or not to be [a lawyer]?  That [was] the question.

For three years I grappled with this question and after much deliberation I have decided to take on this most exciting and thrilling adventure.

Truth be told—I'm only two weeks into my first year so I can't really say much about the 1L course load other than give you a rudimentary breakdown of subject matter jurisdiction or what constitutes cruel and unusual punishment under the 8th amendment of the United States Constitution. What I can offer is the perspective I’ve gained in the years leading up to my entrance in the legal field.

My legal education (and subsequently yours) will singlehandedly be the most important investment I (you) will ever make. Naturally, the main thing holding me back was the crippling debt. But after years of talking to lawyers, reading umpteen blogs and pondering other career options, eventually, my passion for law justified this hefty price tag. On that note, I’d like to bring attention to the plethora of opportunities available for law students to lessen our financial burden. With the world virtually at our fingertips, be on the lookout for scholarships, fellowships, etc. Organizations such as Ms. JD among others have made these kinds of awards readily available for the motivated and keen mind.

I believe law is a profession best learned by practice and the foundation of that practice is, not surprisingly, the school you attend. Essentially, my choice for school was dependent on a few factors, the obvious ones being location, BAR passage rate and merit awards to name a few. After weeding out a few schools I had to delve deeper and to make a long story [relatively] short, Golden Gate University School of Law won me over.

Golden Gate has a world renowned faculty that teaches an enriching curriculum focusing on both theory and legal skills training. I’ve spoken with 2L, 3L and GGU alumni who testify this is the only way to prepare students to step into the practice of law. Additionally, Golden Gate’s on-site clinical programs played a big role in my decision.  I look forward to participating in the Women’s Employment Rights Clinic which provides legal representation to low-income individuals unable to afford the appropriate legal counsel. Making a difference. That’s why I’m going to law school.

Furthermore, Golden Gate prides itself on being an excellent public interest school and offers a dynamic and nimble program, which I believe is best for my interest in public interest. Additionally, the lovely Drucilla Stender Ramey, Dean of GGU Law, is a long-time advocate to Ms. JD and encouraged me to become involved with this wonderful organization during my very first conversation with her. I hope one day to have half the experience she speaks about.

So, that is my story thus far. I am eager to study contemporary legal practice and am grateful for this prestigious opportunity. In sum, please heed my advice. Peruse the web—research actively, network passionately and as always, as the law itself proclaims, learn from precedent, or as I’ve recently learned from my casebooks, stare decisis.

2 Comments

tanya f

I’m so proud to call you my mentee!

VictoriaSA

Seeing how much of a passion you have for law, I am glad a person like you is practising it. It might be a tough journey, and the debts are high, but as a lawyer, you are able to help people in need, and help bring back justice to this world. Lawyers have been given a bad name due to many of being being profit driven, but remember, you can make a difference, however small.
Mariov

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