Alejandro Herrera, 2L
Alejandro Herrera, '13
Hometown: Buffalo, NY
Undergrad: Temple University, ‘09
Law School activities/organizations: Public Interest Law Society, Hemingway Society, Latino Law Students Association, International Moot Court, Hinton Moot Court
To say Alejandro Herrera had a busy 1L summer would be a bit of an understatement. He had not one, not two, but three law-related jobs.
One was working for the Law School’s Federal Criminal Justice Clinic representing indigent defendants charged with federal crimes. “Being on the defense side of criminal proceedings usually means that your cases are very tough, but I feel that we did really effective work on behalf of our clients,” he said. “I learned a lot from my experience and am planning on getting involved again during my 3L year.”
Alejandro also served as a research assistant for a Law School professor and interned with a federal district judge in Chicago, an experience that led him to consider pursuing a post-graduate clerkship. He finished the summer with an open mind about the kind of law he eventually wants to practice.
Every student in Alejandro’s class participated in law-related work their 1L summer, some with help from the Law School’s guarantee of summer funding for those with unpaid internships at nonprofit organizations or government agencies. Summer work is important for students who are building law resumes and testing practice areas to see what they like best.
Alejandro chose to attend the Law School after a test of a different sort. In considering various law schools, he weighed many factors, including location, financial aid, and reputation. It was a visit to the Law School during Admitted Students Weekend that tipped the scale. “I cared the most about meeting my potential classmates and assessing the vibe, which I couldn’t do by reading books and websites,” he said. He advises all prospective students make the same visit. “I don’t believe there is any substitute for forming your own impressions while spending as much time as possible at your prospective schools.”
Here's the class that has had the biggest influence on Alejandro so far:
“Definitely my Legal Research and Writing Class. Research and writing skills are among the most important for lawyers and law students, and they are also some of the most difficult to master. Each 1L had to write a couple of memos and an appellate brief, and the practical experience was invaluable. That class did in a great job in preparing me for my summer work and future career.”