Posts Tagged ‘Career Community: Law’

Meet Edgar D. Rodríguez ’16, Legislative Correspondent/Aide to Congresswoman Norma J. Torres

November 8th, 2017 by eklamm

Name: Edgar D. Rodríguez ’16
Title: Legislative Correspondent/Aide
Organization Name: United States House of Representatives; Congresswoman Norma J. Torres (CA-35)

In one sentence, what does your job entail?

I am responsible for managing the Congresswoman’s entire mail correspondence system between constituents and her office, as well as, using constituent input (among other avenues) to help advance her legislative agenda by proposing and drafting bill ideas.

What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross?

My original plan was to return to my hometown (Pomona, CA) and work in the community expanding access to healthcare, specifically for U.S. citizen children of undocumented parents. However, after participating in the Washington Semester program in the fall of 2016 and receiving a job offer, I decided to stay in D.C.

How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

While I truly enjoyed my internship on the Hill—especially since I was interning for my representative—I still had plans to return to my community. It wasn’t until the Congresswoman asked me to join her on the campaign trail the week leading up to the general election that I began contemplating the idea of staying in D.C. after graduation. Driving the Congresswoman around to multiple campaign stops in California and Nevada and seeing first-hand the issues that she was advocating for and how it related to the work she was doing in D.C., made me realize the possibility of doing the same in Washington. Immediately after returning from California, the Congresswoman offered me the position to stay and help her accomplish the work she advocated for on the campaign trail.

Rarely do you find D.C. staff working for their home representatives. I saw the need to stay here and work for my home representative and advocate for my community because I am from there and I understand the local issues.

What were you involved in when you were on campus?

I was involved quite extensively during my time at Holy Cross through the Student Government Association. I was the assistant to the SGA Director of Student Life my freshman year, a two-term Senator, and eventually Director of Diversity. Concurrently, I was also involved in the Pre-Business program, co-founded the RSO Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanx de Aztlán (M.E.Ch.A. de Holy Cross) my sophomore year, took part of several service trips, was appointed to a couple of Presidential committees under the Office of Diversity, and founded the new center for students of color, among other things.

What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

I came to Holy Cross seeking an Economics Accounting major. However after my first year, that quickly changed to Political Science. While my major did not directly affect my career decisions, I have greatly benefitted from its instruction in my current job.

What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

The two greatest skills that I developed at Holy Cross are the same ones that I utilize today on a daily basis. The first is the ability to manage people. Aside from handling a legislative portfolio for the Congresswoman, I also have the wonderful opportunity to manage our internship program. Understanding the weakness and strengths of people and knowing how to utilize them to the benefit of an organization is something that took quite a bit of trial and error during my time at Holy Cross. The second skill is perhaps more common: the ability to multitask and take on different projects at the same time. For a very long time, I was the type of person that always took more than they could handle simply because I wanted to do it all. Learning to understand your capacity as a leader and how to effectively manage multiple projects early on has truly helped me balance my innate feeling of wanting to take on a lot and doing a good job at it.

What advice do you have for students on campus interested in the Communications / PR field?

I think students always fall short of pursuing their passions and, more often than not, pursue what makes them feel secure and not what challenges them. My advice for students is to try to escape the fear of judgement.

Pursue what makes you grow. There are passions out there that you may discover along the way, passions that you never knew you had. And that might not only impact your life in a positive way, but the lives of those around you as well.

I Was a Political Science Major, Now I am a First Year Associate

October 11th, 2017 by eklamm

Meet Jonathan Casseus ’14, First Year Associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in Boston.

In one sentence, what does your job entail?

My job essentially is that I am a lawyer in a big law firm conducting litigation for large companies on a variety of issues ranging from class actions to securities litigation.

What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?

I always knew that I wanted to go to law school ever since I stepped foot on campus at Holy Cross. I tailored my course selection to prepare me to fulfill that dream. I noticed that the courses matched my passions while at Holy Cross and in law school, I continued to love what I was learning, proving how much of a great fit it was.

What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Sound of St. James All-Male Acapella Group, RA in Mulledy for 2 years, MPE, Peer Mentors, Brother to Brother Committee, WHCH Sports (Broadcaster for Basketball), Intramural Soccer, Co-Chair of BSU in 2013, Treasurer in 2012, and Freshman Apprentice in 2011.

What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

Political Science. The courses really helped me understand how the law can shape countries and states, and the writing equipped me with tools that I still use up to this day.

What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

I learned how to have a disciplined work ethic to meet various deadlines especially when they all fall around the same time period. All the “hell weeks” prepared me for the times when law school got really tough. Moreover, I learned how to constantly reflect on my journey and my purpose and that has aided me in putting things in perspective and reminds me why I wake up doing what I always wanted to do.

What advice do you have for students on campus today?

If you have a goal or dream, take your academics by the horns and try to gear yourself towards that goal as best as you can. Also, do not take Holy Cross for granted, the school is preparing you to do great things, however, selling yourself short or cutting corners will not allow you to reap those benefits.

Meet CrusaderIntern Jacob Wronski ’18, Intern at the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office

September 11th, 2017 by eklamm

Tell us about where you are interning and the kind of work you are doing.

As an intern I spent most of my time at the Worcester Courthouse running errands for assistant district attorneys. I was also fortunate to be paired with a great mentor who was the ADA who processes all of the gun crimes in Worcester. There, one of my main tasks was to contact various police stations across the nation to request records for defendants that were being tried in a Dangerousness Hearing, and help organize their case files.

Give us an example of how you have applied your academic learnings to your internship?

The internship worked also as a class. I have never taken a criminal law course or a course of the basics of the court, and at the office I got to experience the entire process first hand from arraignment to sentencing and everything in between. This is a great way for anyone who may be interested to learn about law, but doesn’t know where to start.

What has surprised you about being an intern?

I was surprised to find the good relationships that were present in the courtroom on opposing sides. The defense attorney’s and ADA’s were civil and, more often than not, got along well in a way that you may not expect.

How did this experience influence or connect to your future career plans / goals?

Before this internship, I was unsure of what my future plans would be. Now, with help from many people at the office, I have decided to apply to law school where I will further explore my interest and passion for the law.

Any internship advice to pass on to other Holy Cross students?

Be assertive and pro-active at all times so that your employer knows you are eager and willing to get work done.

Alumni Job Shadowing Experience in the Legal Department at Circle

August 9th, 2017 by eklamm

Alexandra Curtin ’19 shadowed Noah Spaulding ’02 at Circle this summer. He works in their Legal Department as a Legal Director.

Describe your shadowing visit:

Within seconds upon arriving, Noah greeted me with some (very yummy) doughnuts. He introduced me to all of his very friendly coworkers and then we went into a conference room to discuss the plan for the day. He also told me more about Circle and his journey to the company. Next, I met Noah’s two attorneys, Saige and Christina, in their meeting about the legal contracts for Circle’s ambassador program in the U.K. While Noah was in his next meeting, Christina and I went over each provision in a draft of a Non-Disclosure Agreement. She then took me to lunch across the street because Noah’s meeting went on longer than expected. We finished going over the NDA after lunch. I also met and spoke with Cherie, Circle’s director of compliance in North America. I accompanied Cherie, Noah, and Saige to their meeting about forms for potential investors of Circle. Finally, Noah gave me a Circle t-shirt and took a picture with me!

Do your skills, interests and values align with your shadowing experience (industry of interest)?

Yes, I have always been interested in law so it was interesting to shadow a legal director. Additionally, my International Studies major and proficiency in French align with how Circle is an international company with numerous locations around the world.

Based on this experience are there any skills that you need to develop? If so, what are they and how do you plan to do so?

I definitely need to become more familiar with legal and financial terms. I plan to do so by taking more Economics classes and going to law school.

How has this experience changed or reinforced your career goals?

This experience has definitely reaffirmed my interest in going to law school and pursuing a career on an international level. It showed me the amazing various opportunities provided by a law degree. My experience at Circle also demonstrated how increasingly connected the world is becoming through technology.

Based on this experience what is next in your career plans?

I plan on talking to my advisor about the Pre-Law program and starting to study for the LSATs!

Would you recommend your shadowing visit to other students? Make sure to explain why or why not?

Yes, I would definitely recommend my shadowing visit at Circle to my classmates! Noah was a very welcoming and accommodating host. He and his colleagues took time out of their day to make sure that I learned a lot about the company and how it operates.

Meet CrusaderIntern Sahra Hassan ’19

August 9th, 2017 by eklamm

Meet Sahra Hassan ’19 Intern at Central West Justice Center.

Tell us about where you are interning and the kind of work you are doing.

My day to day work involves reviewing client documents and figuring out why the client’s benefits (either Food stamps, SSI, or EAEDC) have been reduced, cut or terminated. My long term projects include writing a commercial script about Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or Food Stamps) to the purpose of educating the public about the importance of SNAP, who is eligible, and de- stigmatizing it. The other project involves writing a benefits booklet about TAFDC, EAEDC, and SNAP.

Give us an example of how you have applied your academic learnings to your internship?

I have utilized my writing skills a lot. I often write statements to clients and the Department of Transitional Assistance (administers food stamp program).

What has surprised you about being an intern?

I was surprised at how quickly I was able to follow and understand legal terms and documents.

How did this experience influence or connect to your future career plans / goals?

This internship made me realize that law school is not for me; however, I appreciate the experience I had at Central West. I now know that I am more passionate about humanitarianism than legal work.

Any internship advice to pass on to other Holy Cross students?

Do yourself a favor and do an internship that is fulfilling and makes a good experience and not one that just looks good on your resume.

My Alumni Job Shadowing Experience | Law

May 3rd, 2017 by eklamm

Full Name: Andrew Truong
Class Year: 2017
Major: Political Science and Spanish
Shadowing Visit Site: Cetrulo LLP

Describe your visit and what did you gain from the experience?

I arrived at Cetrulo LLP in the morning and met with Mr. Bryan Abramoske, an attorney at the firm and my alumni match. We first went to his office and discussed both what he does and what the firm does in general. Afterwards, we took a tour of the office and Mr. Abramoske was dedicated to having me meet employees all around the firm to give me as many different perspectives as possible, from paralegals to partners, and even a judge. I was able to meet various HC alumni that work at the firm as well, who all also shared their perspectives and advice about transitioning to life after graduation.

I feel that I was able to see many perspectives on what a career in law could look like, and what paths people had taken from undergrad to where they are today. This all helped show the various potential options that I could take. I also felt that I connected very well with Mr. Abramoske, who shared a lot of wisdom and advice with me, and even lent me a book he thought I’d enjoy reading. He offered to be a resource for me for any questions I might have in the future.

How did this experience influence or connect to your future career plans/goals?

This experience definitely reaffirmed my future career goals of pursuing a career in law. By shadowing at Cetrulo, I was able to see and experience a mid-sized private law firm. I had previous experience working in nonprofit and small private firms, so this experience provided me with a different perspective and option of what my future could look like.

What is some helpful advice your alumni host shared with you?

Some of the most helpful advice my alumni host shared with me was to keep an open mind regarding the future and career plans. Even if you have an idea of the path you want to take, things almost never go exactly as planned. So, while having a direction to move towards is good, being flexible and open to change on the path is good, because you’ll gain a lot of knowledge and experience in the process and will ultimately end up where you want to be.

Why would you recommend the Alumni Job Shadowing Program to other students?

The Alumni Job Shadowing Program is a fantastic opportunity for students of all grade levels. I participated in the program both my sophomore year and this past year as a senior and definitely found the experience worthwhile both times. By participating in the program you get to see and experience what a profession is like, what it entails, and what it is like to be in the position firsthand. You may get reaffirmation of a career choice that you’re looking into, or you might realize that a certain career is not what you want to do. Which is also just as, if not more, helpful. You might find an area or position you hadn’t thought of that you end up really liking and want to pursue afterwards. The more experience with and exposure you have to the real world, the better prepared you are to move towards your professional goals after undergrad. In addition, you get the opportunity to connect personally with another HC alum who wants to help you further yourself on your career path that can also serve as a resource beyond your shadowing experience.