$10k Scholarship Finalist

On September 11, 2001, our country and world were forever changed by the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Along with it, a generation of children lost its innocence. On that day in a Long Island suburb outside of New York City, I was a nine-year-old late for school when I watched the second tower fall at 9:03am on TV. Throughout the school day, student after student was called out of class to go home because one of their parents was working as a first responder at Ground Zero or an employee in Lower Manhattan. Terrified by what had occurred in our own backyard, we were all quickly encouraged to go on with our daily lives in order to ensure that the terrorists had not won: a difficult feat.

I look back on this horrific tragedy and think of how it changed my worldview. Years later, I would become deeply interested in better understanding other cultures and religions. How could I learn about others’ perspectives and make the world a better, safer place? A world that had once been so small and only encompassing my own neighborhood, state, and country had become a vast patchwork of nations interconnected by history, the economy, and (just recently) the internet.

In college, I combined my love of global affairs and numbers by studying economics and international relations. During my junior year, I discovered my future career in national security when interning for a year at the Treasury Department at the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). OFAC is the U.S. government agency responsible for issuing and enforcing economic and trade sanctions in order to advance the United States’ foreign policy and national security goals. This involves the implementation of full trade embargoes against countries and regions like Cuba, Iran, and the Russian-occupied regions of Ukraine as well as targeted sanctions against drug traffickers, terrorists, and corrupt regimes.

Since graduating college, I have spent the past nine years of my career working with sanctions as a government employee at OFAC, consultant to financial institutions and businesses while at a sanctions-related startup, and now as a compliance professional in Amazon’s sanctions and export controls group. In my role, I work with our global trade legal partners to assess risk and create internal policies to investigate and close sanctions-related accounts.

My current work inspired me to pursue a J.D., so I can expand my knowledge of international trade regulations beyond sanctions. I hope to use my law degree to change the world by serving as an advocate in the government relations field specializing in international trade regulation issues. I aspire to craft policy that focuses on protecting the United States’ national security through the use of economic tools while minimizing the burden placed on the private sector. As a non-traditional law student, the One Lawyer Can Change the World Scholarship would greatly ease the financial burden and unique challenges of attending law school as a mid-career professional.

My career goal is to become a global trade attorney with a focus on national security, regulatory issues, and public policy. I hope to help people and companies better navigate complicated international trade regulations and ultimately craft policy that can protect our country, advance our strategic interests, and minimize the burden placed on business.

Georgetown Law is a perfect fit for my legal education because it is located in the heart of the nation’s capital only blocks away from where our laws are created, debated, interpreted, enforced, and defended. Attending Georgetown’s law program allows me to continue living and growing professionally in the city that I have called home for the past 13 years. As a law student focused on global trade, learning from professors who are practitioners by day and teachers by night will provide me with the opportunity to learn from the best in the business. I plan to leverage the Georgetown Law classroom, not only to learn but to actively grow my network. In addition, DC is home to a vibrant global trade community, and I am excited to attend events and learn from colleagues in the trade space as it grows in both importance and relevancy.

I would like to thank my husband, family, friends, and colleagues in the global trade compliance space for their constant support and encouragement. Having a team behind me as I forge this new path means the world to me, and I could not do it without them. I would also like to thank BARBRI for this incredible scholarship opportunity, Georgetown Law, and Dean Andy.

Winning this scholarship would empower me to attend my dream law school with a lessened financial burden on my family. I would be able to focus exclusively on the task at hand — becoming a lawyer that can change the world — and not the financial repercussions of the degree. I would be honored to receive this scholarship and would strive to embody the spirit of this award, both inside and outside of the classroom.

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