Student: Amanda Michelle SanchezPEPPERDINE SANCHEZ

Law School: Pepperdine University School of Law

Status: 3L, Juris Doctor candidate, 2015; Master’s in Dispute Resolution candidate, 2015; Certificate in Criminal Legal Practice candidate, 2015

Undergraduate: Pepperdine University

Home: La Palma, California

When you ask Amanda Michelle Sanchez about the transformative experiences in her life, she talks about having an autistic brother and attending Pepperdine University School of Law.

“I grew up watching my mother and father often having to navigate the special education and disability law fields on their own, trying to obtain the legal services to which my brother was entitled,” Sanchez, a 3L, said in e-mails and a telephone interview.

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STUDENT: Prad A. GeorgesU AKRON Prad

LAW SCHOOL: The University of Akron School of Law


UNDERGRADUATE: B.A., Theology/French/Spanish Literature, Minor in Psychology, Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama

OTHER DEGREE: Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy, Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale

HOME CITY/STATE: Miami and Orlando, Florida

Prad A. Georges, a 3L in the JD-MBA program at the University of Akron School of Law, has come full circle personally and professionally. In his former career as a therapist, he saw that he could give his clients better lives if he were able to help improve local economies. Now he says he has the law and business skills to do that.

“Working as a marriage-family therapist for several nonprofits, working alongside lawyers in family court, I was counseling people at the lower middle-to-bottom end of the socioeconomic scale,” Georges said. “That’s when I realized that the poor state of local businesses and entrepreneurship was the underlying cause of so much financial distress. I knew, too, that with a law degree and an MBA, I could help these families and their communities turn their situations around.” Continue reading


Much of the legal career of Lucy S. McGough, Dean of Appalachian School of Law, has pivoted on her being in the right place at the right time with people who believed in her talents: her own choice to pursue a legal degree, for example, as well as her acceptance at Emory University School of Law.Dean McGough 1

As McGough (pronounced McG-you) recounted in a telephone interview, she was a student at Emory University in Atlanta heading for a Ph.D. in English – until she ran into a woman who had graduated three years earlier and was in the midst of the same degree. The subject of the woman’s proposed dissertation: a minor British poet, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, he of “It was a dark and stormy night” fame.

“That’s when I decided against devoting my life to something that seemed so narrow and arcane,” McGough said. “I wandered over to the Emory law school and ended up talking with Ben Johnson, the dean, who on his own authority could and did offer me a place there. He told me, ‘Go for it. And by the way, you start on Monday.’” She was one of three women in the entire law school. Continue reading



LAW SCHOOL: Pepperdine University School of Law


UNDERGRADUATE: Illinois State University, B.S. in Finance

HOME CITY/STATE OR COUNTRY: Bloomingdale, Illinois

Scott Sasser’s service in the U.S. Marine Corps became the key to finding a school that would prepare him for a career as a California attorney. Sasser, a 3L at Pepperdine University School of Law, joined the Marines out of a sense of duty to country as well as an obligation to himself.

“I’d grown up in the Chicago suburbs and wasn’t ready to settle into a desk job in my hometown,” he said in an e-mail and telephone interview. “I wanted a challenge.”

As a junior public affairs officer, he wanted initially to stay in the U.S., preferably on the West Coast. The Corps had other ideas. After nearly a year of training in Virginia and Maryland, Sasser was assigned to Okinawa, Japan. While there, he deployed on civil-military operations missions to both the Philippines and Thailand, and one training mission to mainland Japan. He then completed an operational combat deployment to Afghanistan, where he served as a Tactical Psychological Operations Team Leader.

“I describe it as the ‘best worst’ experience of my life,” he said. “We could see the difference we were making there. It also gave me a healthier perspective on life, on what’s important, and on what situations are actually worth getting stressed about.”  Continue reading


Seattle University School of Law.Photo by Marcus Donner © 2013Annette Clark, dean of the Seattle University School of Law, understands more than most the importance of a good fit in careers and law schools.

Coming from a “medical family,” and interested in the sciences, Clark’s dream was to become a doctor. Then came the third year of medical school and work in clinical and hospital settings. Continue reading



LAW SCHOOL: Indiana University McKinney School of Law; Indianapolis, Indiana

STATUS: LL.M. full time, American Law for Foreign Lawyers, graduating May 2015

LAW DEGREE: LL.B., Mackenzie Presbyterian University; Sao Paulo, Brazil, 2003

OTHER DEGREES: LL.M., Corporate and Contract Law, Mackenzie Presbyterian University, 2008


It was Fernanda Beraldi’s career as an in-house counsel at aircraft-maker Embraer SA that led her to  Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, where she’s earning an LL.M.

Beraldi, who knew she wanted a master’s degree in U.S. law, had narrowed her search to Chicago and Ann Arbor, Michigan. Then a year ago in February, she came to Indianapolis to meet with a client about the sale of a pre-owned airplane.

“I was very impressed with the lawyers with whom I had to work,” she said in a telephone interview. “They were smart, professional and cooperative while at the same time advocating for their client. They weren’t trying to batter us into submission, but rather with every word were clearly trying to get a fair deal done.”

It turns out that not only were they all Indiana lawyers, but they all had attended the McKinney School of Law. Continue reading