Full Time Practice

Monday, November 5, 2012

Using Your Law Degree in Your Community and Family: Gifts of a Law Degree

At a WIL recruitment lunch for female students, held on March 12, 2012, Mehrsa Baradaran gave an address entitled, "Education Multipliers".

Mehrsa researches and writes on banking regulation and administrative law.  She taught classes in banking regulation, property, secured transactions and administrative law at BYU Law School from 2009-2011.

She has a wonderful story to tell about her grandmother, who was born and raised in Iran, and the impact this grandmother's thirst for knowledge had upon the generations that followed.  I encourage you to read her entire address which can be found in the Fall 2012 Clark Memorandum or online at www.jrcls.org/publications/clark_memo/.

Toward the end of her remarks Mehrsa makes the following statement, "I will tell you that you will never regret your education".  She then goes on to pose this question: why law?   Her remarkable answer and insights were these:
My first year of law school was the most mind-expanding time of my life. Studying the law teaches you how to think critically, analyze problems, and articulate your viewpoints. Learning law is really a chance to peek at the wizard behind the curtain. It demystifies what is so elusive to so much of the world. It puts you in a position of power—true power—to lift burdens. 
No matter what you do with your life, the skills you learn in law school will help you. A law degree is the most flexible advanced degree. I have friends with law degrees who work in government, business, and law firms. Some do public service work and others stay home with their children and use their law degree to teach their children about the world. 
If you are trained well and are good at what you do, you can do a variety of meaningful part-time and contract work without working full-time. And even in those seasons of life in which you are not working at all, you can still be useful to family, friends, and your community by participating on boards, giving advice, and lending a hand to the disadvantaged or marginalized...
When you go to law school you not only learn during those three years, but those three years lay the groundwork for learning for the rest of your life...What a blessing you and I have to learn and be educated. I hope that as women we seek those opportunities, show gratitude for them, and become education multipliers. 
Thank you, Mehrsa.

(One of the goals of this bog is to address seven different focus groups:  full time practice; part time practice; on hiatus; practicing with children at home; students; using your law degree in your community and family; and, singles.  If you have any suggestions about topics you would like to see addressed in these areas, please let us know through the Comment section below.)

1 comment:

  1. I also highly recommend this article, which has the lead-off spot in the latest Clark Memorandum, and am glad the WIL Blog is spotlighting Mehrsa. Mehrsa spoke at the WIL pre-law conference event 3 years ago, and her story is a fascinating one.