Alumni Spotlight: Kareema Mitchell '10

02/14/2020
Kareema Mitchell '10

Do you have certain memories about law school? 

My most treasured memories from my time as a law school student are borne of the enduring friendships I began there. My classmates and I created a special community at Boyd, a space in which we could learn, grow, and contribute to the community around us. So all of my fondest Boyd student memories involve the many social events, community service activities, group competitions, study sessions, et cetera, where we came together as a family to study, learn, serve, break bread, work, play, and be catalysts for change in our community. When we came together once again last year to support and then grieve our dear friend and classmate, Geneva Lemon, is a memory that will, in my mind, stand above the rest. What the Boyd community – faculty and alumni alike -- did for her, her family, and each other in her last months and what it continues to do since her passing is nothing short of an act of love. My Boyd classmates and the faculty and staff who taught and supported us are my family; Boyd will always be my home. 

What was the toughest lesson you’ve learned so far in your career? 

I hesitate to say that I’ve “learned” this lesson because that implies I actually know what I’m doing now. But I think it’s important for an attorney to be aware of the existence of secondary trauma and learn how to deal with it when serving clients who have survived traumatic events that form the basis of the representation. We should consider how and whether past trauma in our own lives affects our approach to such clients and our ability to zealously advocate in their interests. But most importantly, we must take care of ourselves so we can take care of others. I’m still working on this last point.

Do you have a motto and what is it?

Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing...and wooden nickels...and lava. Stay away from that "stuff."

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