Countless alumni of Denver Law are flourishing as attorneys in the public interest and government sectors in the Metro Denver region and beyond. Each month, we highlight a different alum and learn about their law school career, their current work, and why they chose this path.
What have you been doing since graduating from Denver Law?
Since graduation, I’ve been working as a staff attorney at the Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center (RMCLC). I was able to extern here as both a law and social work student while I was pursuing a dual degree at Denver Law and the University of Denver’s School of Social Work. Primarily at RMCLC, I work as a guardian ad litem (GAL) in Jefferson County, which means I am appointed to represent the children’s best interest in juvenile delinquency and dependency and neglect cases. I zealously advocate on behalf of children to ensure that their mental health, physical care, and educational needs are met. As part of my representation, I conduct independent investigations, meet with the child, and meet with anyone who has an impact on the child’s life in order to make recommendations to the court on what is in the child’s best interest. Last spring, I was also appointed as the GAL in the Family Integrated Treatment Center in Jefferson County. My focus here is to collaborate with a team of professionals that work with parents who are experiencing substances abuse issues. Our goal is to provide services to try to keep kids in the home or return them home as soon as possible, once we can achieve the safety necessary for them to return.
My favorite thing about my job is being able to work closely with children. When I went to law school, I knew I wanted to do something that allowed me to advocate on behalf of children. Knowing that I am having an impact on children’s lives makes every day worth going to work for. I feel really fortunate that I was able to get a job that allows me to use both my law degree and my social work degree almost every day.
What are some of your best memories at Denver Law?
My best memories were the different externships I was able to find because of the emphasis Denver Law places on public sector experiential work. The school worked really hard to help me get hands-on experience. In addition to my externships with the RMCLC, I also externed for the Colorado State Court Administrator’s office within their Court Improvement Program. This externship even led to a part-time job while I was a student. Denver Law opened so many doors within the professional field. This made law school that much more rewarding.
What advice would you give a student who is interested in pursuing public interest law?
Don’t be deterred by what your peers are doing! If you are interested in public interest law, there is a lot of opportunity out there. It’s easy to get caught up in the law school idea of getting the ‘top law firm job’, but there are so many opportunities in the public interest field that will be really beneficial. I have had so much courtroom experience that I never thought I would get – one of the advantages to doing public interest law is that you often get hands on experience very quickly!
Pride and Prejudice
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