By Larissa Alire, Fellow Class of 2016
I have wanted to be a lawyer since I was in seventh grade. I didn’t know what becoming a lawyer entailed, other than attending law school. This was because I didn’t come from a family of lawyers or even know one personally. I learned about Law School – Yes We Can in high school and that changed everything. Law School Yes We Can is paving the way for me to become a lawyer. Let me tell you how.
The program has allowed me to form relationships with people I really admire, like Judge Arguello. In fact, it was my approaching Judge Arguello at the Colorado Hispanic Bar Association Dinner in 2015, which led to my learning about and applying for the program. At the time, I was a junior in high school. I was invited to the dinner because of my participation in the
Denver Urban Debate League. My partner and I were the only Latino debate duo in the league, and we attended the dinner to receive an award on behalf of the debate team. Judge Arguello was receiving the lifetime award. After reading her biography, I searched for her so that I could introduce myself. She told me about Law School Yes We Can. I was immediately intrigued and determined to apply to the program. I was so excited when I received my acceptance email. Judge Arguello and I also continue to stay in touch.
Law School Yes We Can has given me a roadmap on how to reach my goal of becoming a successful lawyer. I’m more halfway done with my first year of college, but I can confidently say I have a ten-year plan, which very many eighteen year old cannot say! My mentors have assisted me with things like selecting courses to reading over internship cover letters. They also answer my panicking texts; when I think things are going downhill, they lift me up. Halleh Omidi, one of my mentors always reminds me to breathe and that it’s okay to have fun. I get so caught up in the track to law school that I forget I’m only eighteen; she keeps me sane. Another of my attorney mentors, Theresa Wardon, invited me to watch her argument in front of the Colorado Supreme Court. This was one of the most incredible experiences I have ever had. It really opened up my eyes to what I would be doing in the future, and I loved every second of it. April Connolly, my law school mentor, guides me through the expectations for law school. I see her working hard every day, and that inspires me to do better too.
The events sponsored by the program have proven very helpful as well. They give me an opportunity to hear from and interact with lawyers. I also value that these people want to help me, and other fellows, get into law school. The most impactful event I have attended so far was the holiday dinner. There, the guest speaker, Dr. Ramos, was beyond inspirational. His words reminded me of why I am working so hard to become a lawyer. I am doing this for myself, my family, and the future generations that are following me. Additionally, Law School Yes We Can offers me LSAT Prep, guidance, and overall preparation for my future.
In conclusion, Law School Yes We Can is setting me up to achieve my dreams. I know that there is a lot of work ahead of me, and likely many obstacles to overcome, but I am confident that with the help of Law School Yes We Can, I will be successful.