• Issues,  Law School

    Responding to Racist Comments in the Classroom

    I wrote a post years ago about responding to racist comments and when that was written the discourse and awareness of racism in law school was not as out in the open as it was now. When I was in school (yikes that makes me sound old!), if someone complained about racist comments by other students, the students of color were told to grow thicker skin. There were few recourses for things that weren’t over the top overt so the idea was that you just grit and bear it, for the most part. And even though there is more self-awareness within some schools about implicit bias and space for students…

  • Issues,  Legal Practice

    Break It: Moving Past Stereotypes to Advance your Career

    I want to direct folks back to the ABA report about women of color leaving law. The report is great and breaks down so many of the issues women face that cause a road block in their career. One frequent theme that the participants highlight is how difficult it is to find mentors/sponsors in their career because they are not able to make a connection with those in positions to help advance their careers. The women profiled found it difficult to connect with the white male leaders in their firms, but noticed that the men did not have that same hesitancy/barrier to help white women. They hypothesize that a big…

  • Legal Practice,  Work Life Balance

    Never Making Partner: Can You Be a Happy as a Lawyer?

    The ABA recently issued a report on Women of Color in the law on why they leave or stay in the profession. The results are …stark. It was nothing surprising, but even still, it was disappointing to know the same issues I’m struggling with for a decade are issues women who have been practicing twice as long have endured. It’s like, ya, guey. Please stop. The study (which is worth reviewing) discusses the bias and stereotyping the participants (all women practicing for more than 15 years) experience. They discuss the prove it again bias; the othering we experience as attorneys; how we are never seen as equals by those in…

  • Issues,  Work Life Balance

    Don’t Talk in Whispers: Becoming Better at Advancing Racial Justice

    Many years ago (ok not that many, but a while ago) I was a freshman in college and will be forever grateful that my school had mandatory events for MLK day. I randomly attended one on white supremacy, expecting to learn about organized white supremacist groups (hi, I was a criminology major so felt it was more align with my studies). But instead, I experienced an eye-opening panel that “raised my consciousness” and became really the first step in understanding racist systems; acknowledging racial injustice; and pursuing racial equity.  On this site, I never hesitate to talk about race and its impact in the legal system  because I believe that…

  • Issues,  Work Life Balance

    Ten Changes that Made Me Feel Less Guilty About How Bad We Treat Mother Earth

    It’s earth day! Remember the fires earlier this year? They were intense and made really want to review my habits as a consumer and user of things that were better for the environment and the community that I’m in. I asked for advice and people came through with support (you always do!) to help me realign and think of ways to change my habits. So I’m sharing ten things I’ve done that have helped limit my waste and harm. Now before I get into it, I have to say that clean communities and the environment is an issue where we, Latinx, are often not at the table, but always on…

  • Issues,  Law School

    Can I Even Do This? How To Determine If You Can be a Lawyer

    Deciding to go to law school is difficult. There are so many factors everyone considers–is the cost worth it? will I be happy? should I move out of state or stay close to home? The overwhelming question many would-be applicants ask is “should I go to law school?” and more often than not, money is the factor. Can you manage the debt and will you earn a living that makes the debt worth it? But…for many of us, even before we get to “should I?”  we experience a ton of self-doubt that asks not should you, but can you? Can you even go to law school and become an attorney?…

  • Issues,  Law School,  Legal Practice

    The Danger in Being the First

    Wow, so I didn’t think I would write anything substantial about the American Dirt publishing industry scandal but like always Latino USA came through and inspired me. To bring ppl up to speed, American Dirt was written by a White woman and given a seven figure (!) advance by a publishing industry that then turned around and spent even more money to promote it. They landed promos with Latina influencers, a spot on Oprah’s book club, and blurb by the Chicana literary icon, Sandra Cisneros. The book, while fiction, seemed to be steeped in stereotypes and an obvious lack of knowledge of what it means to be Mexican. When a…

  • Issues,  Law School,  Legal Practice,  Work Life Balance

    A (1/2) Decade of Latinas Uprising

    It’s kind of exciting that we’re entering a new decade right? I think because I’m working on census 2020 stuff all the time at my new job that I’m very aware of this decennial time frame and how much changes in ten years.  But this time around, I am a little more relaxed than times past where I had a set timeline of accomplishments and milestones I wanted to work towards. In 2010, my only goal was to graduate law school, pass the bar, and find a full time job as an attorney.  I can say that decade really delivered. Not only did I become a lawyer, I laid a…

  • Issues,  Law School,  Legal Practice

    Let Them Underestimate You: What Julian Castro Teaches Us About Expectations

    First, this is not an endorsement, but we have to talk about Julian Castro. He killed it at the debate stage on Wednesday and was a surprising star of the night. It seemed obvious that his performance was a surprise to everyone but Julian Castro. I noticed how cool, calm, collected he was after he delivered it. He acted like he did exactly what he had planned to do, even acknowledging that “a lot of people were surprised” by his breakout performance. That’s when it clicked. Julian Castro, I’m sure, has a life experience of being a Brown attorney who is dismissed as someone who is incapable of delivering and…

  • Issues,  Law School

    What Law School is Not

    Recently someone interested in pursuing a more academic career asked me about the nature of law school and the ability to discuss ideas and social issues along with cases. It reminded me of my own experience when I first started law school and how incorrect I was when it came to the purpose and focus of law school. The summer before my 1L year I was really lucky to participate in a program for low income students to prep them for law school; like a mini-boot camp. I was stationed at Notre Dame and was bright eyed and ready to go on my first day. The program had three courses,…