Discovering the Diverse Possibilities in Life and Law

In a previous blog post, we told you about how one student started her journey into the world of law via an event sponsored by the Law School Admission Council under its Diversity Matters grant program. Today, we share more stories of students who come from diverse backgrounds, but were able to discover that a legal education was within reach for them.

Victoria Burnette wanted to make sure a law career was what she wanted, so after she finished her undergraduate work, she took time off from school her own schooling, anyway (she taught kindergarten for a year). “I think it’s very important to be able to be that person to say, ‘Hey, I did it, and you can do it, too,’” she says. Here, she talks about her experience and where she’s starting her career in law.

Much of Victoria’s background isn’t typical of a law school student, but that is exactly why the profession needs her perspective. When people from a wide range of backgrounds add their perspectives to the greater legal community, that community better reflects the people it serves — thereby increasing access to justice for all.

Violette Cloud experienced a challenging first year of law school while completing a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. But she says the experience was “amazing” because she was able to learn what was possible in a legal career. “It’s not going to be easy … but there are ways to make change happen” in the world, she says. Here, she discusses her experience so far.

LSAC is committed to helping people like Victoria and Violette discover the possibilities of a career in law. Through its Diversity Matters grant program, LSAC annually sponsors more than 100 law school events and programs at campuses around the United States and Canada. At these events, students early in their educational journey can learn why the world does need another lawyer — and how diversity is critical to access to justice for all.

The legal profession itself is diverse, too, as Andrew “AJ” Sutton discovered. He studied mechanical engineering as an undergraduate, then found himself drawn to patent law — an area of practice, he says, that “you either love or you hate.” Here, he talks about how pursuing a law degree will open more career opportunities than his engineering degree would have.

These students are just three examples of why promoting diversity in legal education is key to LSAC’s mission of increasing access to justice. To learn more about the Diversity Matters grant program, and about other LSAC grant programs that promote diversity in the legal profession, visit LSAC Grant Programs.

Kent D. Lollis

Vice President & Chief Diversity Officer, LSAC
Kent D. Lollis is vice president and chief diversity officer at the Law School Admission Council, where he leads external outreach to organizations, associations, and other stakeholders working to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the legal profession. He also directs diversity, equity, and inclusion goals within the LSAC organizational structure.