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INTERVIEW: LINDSAY KRIZ ’17, UNIVERSITY OF IOWA COLLEGE OF LAW 1L

Lindsay Kriz is from Denver, Colorado, but growing up she also lived in Iowa and California. She was a competitive swimmer for most of her life, which was a factor that lead her to choose to go to Hopkins. While at Hopkins, she studied Biomedical Engineering while competing as a member of the varsity swim team.

At Hopkins she studied Biomedical Engineering and originally was planning on pursuing a career in the medical device industry before deciding to go to law school during her junior year. Although she decided that she no longer wanted to have a career in the medical device industry, Lindsay still graduated with her Biomedical Engineering degree in 2017.

After graduating from Hopkins, Lindsay spent a year as an engineer at a biotech company prior to entering law school. She hopes to have a career as a patent attorney working with companies or researchers who are designing and developing medical devices and biologics.

Describe a typical day as a law student at the University of Iowa College of Law.

My typical day usually depends on my class schedule, which is different every day. If I don’t have class until the late morning or early afternoon, I try to get to the law school fairly early to work on reading or review notes before class. I also try to squeeze studying in whenever I have breaks between classes to make the most of my time at school. If I am done with class early in the day, I will stay at the law school for a little while to read and study. I usually will leave the law school in the early evening to go to the gym, then after dinner I will either finish up any reading I have left or relax and watch TV. My weekends are usually spent preparing for the next week of class, relaxing, and spending time with my friends.

To date, what has been your favorite law school class, and why? What classes are you looking forward to taking after your first year of law school?

My favorite law school class so far is Trademarks and Unfair Competition. This isn’t a typical 1L course, but Iowa allows us one elective during the spring semester. It is exciting to take an Intellectual Property class so early in my time at law school, and the professor is fantastic. I really enjoy his teaching style and the formulaic nature of the material being taught.

There is a course called Medical Innovation, where a group of law students work with students at Iowa’s medical school to identify a healthcare need in the community and develop a solution to the issue. This includes working out any legal issues that may arise, including things like patent or trademark infringement. I am looking forward to this class because it will be a rare opportunity for me to draw on everything I learned studying BME at Hopkins.

What made you choose University of Iowa College of Law? What do you see as the primary pros and cons of law school?

I was originally drawn to the University of Iowa College of Law because both of my parents went to Iowa for undergrad, however there are so many great things about the law school. For one, the professors are some of the best in the country. Many of my professors have advanced degrees, including J.D.s, from Ivy League schools and others have been substantial contributors to the development of the law in their area of expertise. For example, my Contracts professor has written many commentaries on Contract Law that have been cited in U.S. Supreme Court Decisions. And my Property professor helped to write federal legislation governing organ and tissue donation. Also, the Intellectual Property professors at Iowa also have a reputation for being some of the best in their field, which was important to that decision being that that is the area of law I would like to practice.

What types of undergraduate opportunities did you pursue that led to your decision to apply to law school? Were there any experiences that you felt were particularly helpful in strengthening your application to law school?

I didn’t really do anything in undergrad that led me to pursue my decision to apply to law school. In fact, I did not know that I wanted to pursue a legal career until late in my junior year. Swimming also took up a significant amount of my time, so I had did not have much time for additional extracurricular activities. That being said, I think that being a student-athlete did strengthened my application. I also think that demonstrating a strong academic background, like an undergraduate degree from Hopkins, is something that helped my application as well.

What did you pursue during your interim year(s)/before beginning law school, while in law school and during your law school summer(s)? How did you go about researching these opportunities?

In the year between graduating from Hopkins and starting law school, I worked as an engineer at a biotech company in the Denver area. I had also been an intern at this company during one of my summers. I enjoyed this experience because I was able to be a part of the design and development process for a few medical devices and biologics, which is an experience that I think will help me later in my career as a patent attorney.

How would you compare the reality of law school and the ensuing job search to the picture you had of it while an undergraduate?

So far, I have found law school to be a lot less intimidating than I had imagined. I though that I was going to be constantly overloaded with work and staying up all night getting reading done, but that has not been the case. The academic rigor at Hopkins definitely prepared me to be able to handle the workload in law school so far and manage my time well.

The job search on the other hand is exactly what I had expected. As a first year student looking to work in a large firm, I have had to send out a lot of emails and applications since I am looking in a competitive market. However, I have found that alumni connections have been very helpful in getting my foot in the door.

Do you have any advice for an undergraduate interested in pursuing law school and a career in law given your experience in today’s legal market and now as a current law student?

I think that law school is a serious commitment and it is not something that should be taken lightly. The work and dedication required is nothing to joke about, so going to law school should really be something you are excited about doing. Also do your research about all aspects of the law schools you are interested, not just their rankings. Things like job placement, bar pass rate, and even the professors can be more important and more valuable to your experience than the ranking.

Contact Information:

Lindsay is happy to answer questions and is reachable by email at: lindsay-kriz@uiowa.edu

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