Q&A with Kathryn
Why did you choose BU Law?
BU Law’s health law program was a major factor in my decision to apply to, and ultimately attend, BU Law. None of the other schools I considered offered the breadth of health law courses that BU Law offers its students. I was particularly interested in the clinic externships and the pro bono opportunities available. Another major draw for me was the BU Law community. During the admitted students preview weekend, the current students’ varied interests and experiences, along with their approachability and down-to-earth attitudes, really impressed me. I thought, “I could go to school with these people!”
Who was the first person you told that you were accepted and why?
The first person I told that I was accepted to BU Law was my supervisor at PDPH. I learned that I had been accepted while I was at work, and could not contain my excitement. I was thrilled to tell my supervisor because she and my coworkers could not have been more supportive throughout the entire law school application process. Of course, I then immediately called my mom and dad to share the news. My parents have always been supportive of my educational path – whether it’s been geared towards law school, medical school, or public health – and they knew how much I wanted to attend BU Law.
Thus far, what do you think of BU Law’s health law program? Do you have a favorite class or particularly inspiring professor?
As a 1L, I have not yet had the opportunity to take any health law courses; however, I have had the chance to get involved with the student-run Health Law Association and attend several faculty panels – most recently one commenting on the Supreme Court’s Affordable Care Act decision. At the moment, my favorite class is Contracts, but I am particularly looking forward to having class with my faculty advisor (and health law guru), Professor Outterson.
How have BU Law professors and/or fellow students responded to your PDPH experiences?
My experiences working in the Epidemiology Unit of PDPH seem to intrigue my classmates and professors; however, I expected my unconventional path into law to surprise more people. What I have learned though, is that all of my classmates come from unique backgrounds. I think a common misperception is that all law students have some sort of legal background coming into law school – maybe working in politics or as a paralegal, or even just volunteering in a law firm over the summer – but this is simply not true at BU.
Would you say many fellow students have similar legal interests or views as you? How does that impact your law school experience?
Since BU has a renowned health law program, I have met several students with similar legal interests to mine. Taking classes with many of my future colleagues is an extraordinary experience. Like all BU Law students, we come from different backgrounds and are able to learn from each other.
What has been most difficult about the transition from PDPH to law school?
Working for a couple of years, I was used to ending my workday at 6 p.m. and having the rest of the evening to myself. Homework was a thing of the past, and I had to reacquaint myself with the idea of it when I came to law school. Nevertheless, I think the analytical skills I gained working at PDPH have translated well to the assigned readings and class discussion, and I would not trade my work experience for anything.
What advice would you give to a BU Law applicant?
“Be yourself” and “do you.” Personally, I was not ready to attend law school fresh out of college – I needed time to figure out what career path to take to achieve my life goals – but I have met several people who were ready and are currently excelling in law school. With that said, I would definitely recommend getting work experience before applying. After two years of working, I came to school excited to learn rather than feeling burnt out. Also, through my work experience, I affirmed that investing in three years of law school was what I really wanted to do.