Education & Rationale
Jaymi-Lyn Souza, Worcester State University ’21
I decided that I wanted to be a lawyer when I was around ten years old. I had gained some knowledge of the legal system as a child and even just from my limited exposure, I saw how important it was to have representation. Since then, I realized that our system is only fair if there are people who strive to keep it fair. My goal has always been to help people, and I realized that by being a lawyer, I would be able to do so by making sure they are represented and that their voices are heard.
When I applied to college, I applied to most places as a political science major. Worcester State did not have a political science major, so I applied, was accepted, and given a full scholarship as a history major. At the beginning of my freshman year, I met with my academic advisor, who referred me to Dr. Dell’Aera– a Political Science faculty member. He took over as my advisor, and told me that he and his colleagues were attempting to establish a political science major at Worcester State. Unfortunately, that did not happen in time for me to pursue my degree that way, so I chose to pursue it through Liberal Studies instead, blending philosophy and political science together.
Political science and philosophy are the two areas of study that will best help me in my pursuit of a law degree. As a senior, I am almost done with my degree. The courses I have taken have helped me to grow as a critical thinker and have widened the way I see the world. Through my studies and in-field experience working on campaigns, I have been exposed to theories, beliefs, and perspectives aside from my own. These skills are imperative to becoming a good lawyer: my career goals are to ensure that laws are applied in a just manner, and that laws themselves are just. In order to evaluate whether something is or is not just, I have to be able to consider justice from many different perspectives, because what is fair to one person may have detrimental impacts on another.
I believe that the degree program that I created through Liberal Studies is actually better than a standard political science program. Liberal studies has given me the ability to undertake a substantial course load in philosophy, as well. Philosophy is heavily related to law: both require interpreting and evaluating dense, oftentimes theoretical texts. Because of the blend of courses I have taken, my degree does not just make me more competitive as I apply to law school– it ensures that I will be a better law student.