Brian Ahn, 1L
Brian Ahn, ‘14
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Undergrad: Georgetown University, ‘02
Major: International Political Economy
Law School activities/organizations: Intramural sports, American Constitution Society, Student Admissions Committee, Asian Pacific American Law Students Association
LSAT scores and GPAs aren’t the only components of admission to Chicago Law. When the Admissions Committee members study applications to build an incoming class, life experiences are an important consideration as well. Those experiences can fall into a diverse array of categories.
Take 1L Brian Ahn, for example.
After college, he spent a year learning Korean in Korea, worked for an American steel company, and was a bartender and waiter at various restaurants. He decided to try law school while serving as an assistant to a screenwriter and a producer with a small media and film production company he formed with friends.
“I’ve always wanted to come to law school, but family circumstances prevented it right after college,” he said. “More and more, especially after talking to lawyers and mentors in the entertainment industry, I was confident that this is what I wanted to do to further myself intellectually and career wise.”
Chicago Law impressed Brian from the start. He was drawn to its reputation for attracting faculty who care about teaching and for the atmosphere that comes from having small class sizes. It meant a lot to him that current students always were willing to email, chat online, or talk with him to give honest opinions about their experiences. He was convinced this was a community he wanted to join.
Transitioning from his life in the workforce hasn’t been easy, but the Law School community and its support have exceeded his expectations. Students in the 2L and 3L classes helped ease the 1Ls into law school, he said, and his 1Ls classmates have been “impossibly nice.” “I know someone whose laptop lost a water fight recently, and people went out of their ways to email him all their notes from the entire quarter,” Brian said.
His most memorable experiences so far have been the time he’s spent getting to know his classmates and professors, whether it’s unwinding at Wine Mess after a tough week or catching a great lunchtime speaker (such as ACLU President Susan Herman and Special Advisor to the United Nations Jeffrey Sachs). “I love how the Law School encourages us to ask the faculty to lunch,” he said. “We can get to know them outside of talking about hypotheticals.”
Here's what Brian thinks is the biggest misconception about Chicago Law:
“There seems to be a misconception that Chicago students are all work and no play. This couldn’t be further than the truth. My classmates and upperclassmen here are awesome, and I couldn’t imagine being at school with a better group of people.”