Highly motivated to pursue a career in law, I hope to begin by earning the Juris Doctorate through the Flex Program at XXXX College's XXXX Law Center, the program with which I feel strongly that I am the best fit. I look forward to giving of myself fully to the legal profession inspired and empowered by my deep appreciation for the order that our legal systems maintain in our societies. I also greatly prize liberty and I am drawn to the high stakes involved in law, and our capacity as legal professional to protect vulnerable people from the powerful. I see a career in law as intellectually challenging and personally fulfilling, not just about rules and regulations, but also about rights, justice, and the importance of understanding human behavior on both individual and societal levels.
My BA in Political Science from the University of Oregon (2010) and MS in Conflict and Dispute Resolution from the University of Oregon’s School of Law (2016), provide me with a solid academic foundation for excellence at Touro. I have taken a number of classes closely related to law as part of my Master’s Program and all of my work experience so far has been in the legal field. Currently, investigating allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination in which I conduct interviews of complainant, respondents, and witnesses, drafting memorandums and final reports, all in legal language. My disposition and character are suited to the practice of Law: dogged, detail oriented, a great debater, I am someone who always has and always will find myself attracted to the cause of the underdog, when that cause is just. I want to stand up and speak for those unable to speak for themselves, those in need of defense, victims, unjustly accused, those who are discriminated against or abused by the legal system. Studying Law will make me sharper, more sensitive, and provide me with a highly marketable skill. The Flex Program at XXXX Law School combines top notch quality and reputation with the flexibility that will enable me not only to meet my other obligations while I am a student in Law School, but to put the top-level time and energy into each class, enabling me to excel and distinguish myself as a creative thinker.
Born in Punjab, India, I migrated to the United States with my family at the age of 9 and we settled in Eugene, Oregon, the only “brown” kid in school. My parents enrolled me in an American school, explaining that it was time for me to learn English – “a language that could open doors to better opportunities” and a new, better way of life. I learned quickly, pouring over ESL books until late at night: The Secret Garden and The Wind in the Willows opened up new worlds of captivating images and beautiful stories that I longed to be part of. Along with the new language, I adopted a different way to dress, new mannerisms, and new tastes, including American pop culture. Whenever taxi drivers or waitresses asked where I was from, I told them I was American.
At home, I asked my mom to stop packing Indian food for my lunch. The smell of curry I once enjoyed now embarrassed me. Instead, I wanted instant mashed potatoes and Kraft mac and cheese. Things improved after my family started traveling internationally and I learned a lot about different cultures and ethnicities, becoming more comfortable in my own skin. In high school, I sometimes did research on my country, India, my culture and would present in class. One thing I learned was that people appreciated diversity and would always ask me questions about India and life there. I moved to New York after I got married in in 2015, where I have basked in the diversity and opportunity. Since moving to New York, my focus has gravitated towards helping the poor, vulnerable, marginalized, or disenfranchised members of my society, those who otherwise might not be able to represent or defend themselves.
I am the first girl in my entire extended family to earn not only a Master’s but even a Bachelor’s Degree. It was my deceased father’s dream that I earn a degree in Law. I began teaching children while still a child myself, mostly language arts, in our temple in India; and continued to do so in our temple here in America all the way through high school, preparing curriculums for all classes, facilitating meetings, workshops and tutoring students. I have volunteered at FOOD for Lane County (FFLC), a private, nonprofit food bank with a mission of helping to reduce hunger by engaging our community in the creation of access to food: soliciting, collecting, growing, rescuing, preparing, and packaging food for distribution through our network of social service agencies and programs. I volunteered to serve as part of a team working to raise public awareness, education and to encourage long-term community-based solutions to hunger. I have also volunteered at The Eugene Mission providing emergency assistance and long-term solutions for homeless neighbors (men, women and children), in search of stable employment and housing.
Diversity/inclusion and equal justice are close to my heart, especially serving as an advocate for women, girls, and working with LGBT issues. In my current position as an Equal Opportunity Manager with the Department of Education of the State of New York, I investigate cases of sexual harassment and discrimination as well as other forms of discrimination based not only on gender, but also sexual orientation, religion, race, color, age, disability, marital status, pregnancy and other forms of discrimination in the public school system of New York. I oversee 26 other investigators and assist them bringing in and interviewing complainants, witnesses, and respondents (often with union representation). We make a determination of whether the respondent is going to be terminated from the DOE or if there is going to be a series of trainings for the respondent and/or some other action taken. I also provide trainings thorough the Department of Education in the areas of sexual harassment/discrimination, EEO and EEO Laws.
A big part of my interest in law school is my concern for people who for a variety of reasons have trouble navigating our legal systems. Increasingly, I have become interested in Labor Law as I think this will help me to excel at the service of society, engaged with public-sector issues and the promotion of diversity and inclusion – particularly in the workplace. I want to search for ways to help create and maintain harmonious employer-employee relations through the study of collective bargaining and benefit disputes.
I look forward to giving my all to your program as an Indian-American woman who thinks of herself as a global citizen with an inclusive disposition.
I thank you for considering my application to the Flex Program at XXXX Law.