Friday, March 3, 2017

Rachel Chung ’18

Yale is attractive to me because I got the impression, even before coming here and had found this to be true, that I could study anything I wanted here. And I would have a whole wide range of intellectual opportunities and different faculty members to learn from. And a really robust network of peers who I would be learning from throughout my time in law school. And when I came to admitted students week, it felt like the right fit.

I am a member of the San Francisco Affirmative Litigation Project, which is a clinic that pairs Yale Law students with city attorneys in the San Francisco city attorney's office. And we bring affirmative litigation under an unfair competition statute, which allows us to go after all kinds of bad actors in and around San Francisco. Those cases are on behalf of the people of San Francisco or the people of California to make sure that a lot of under-represented communities, who don't otherwise have access to legal representation are getting a fair fight.

I've been involved in the new ideas team in the clinic, which is a long-running favorite. We help city attorneys develop potential ideas, and we'll research those ideas based on what kind of bad stuff is happening in San Francisco. And I've also been involved in on-going litigation matters on a variety of consumer protection and public health topics.

This year I've served as the chair of Yale Law Women. We're one of the largest and most active student organizations here at the law school. As you can imagine, our membership comprises all of the women here at the law school, which appropriately is about half. We advocate to advance the status of women here at Yale Law School and in the legal profession at large. And so far this year, it's taken shape by doing mentorship programming to pair younger students with older students. To talk about their experiences, as well as pairing students with faculty members to figure out ways that they can shape their careers and think about the future of their academic career, while they're still here. We put together faculty dinners, we bring in outside speakers-- women who are alumni of this law school and other law schools, doing all kinds of amazing things in the law. And that has been a really fun way for me and for other students to see some of their options that are out there.

We make community engagement a really big part of our mission-- Creating social and professional and intellectual networks between the women of the law school and our alumni base. Again, to help women think about different options that are out there, and also about what kind of challenges they're going to face knowing that the legal profession is historically and still dominated by men in so many ways. And that while we're all intellectually equipped to get out there and do what we want to do, we're going to face barriers as women. And we help our students prepare for that as well.

A student perspective on clinics and student organizations at Yale Law School.