The “McGeorge Legacies” blog series allows our current students and alumni to share their experiences, passions, and lessons with our community. While many legacy students find their passion for the law through a family member’s experience, they often forge their own path once they begin their personal journey through law school. We are proud of everything our alumni have accomplished, and we can’t wait to see where our current students will go.

This week we heard from Skye Dawson (class of 2022) and her father, Norman “Norm” Dawson (class of 1993), as they shared their legal journeys. Short excerpts are below, and you can read Skye and Norm’s full stories here.

Skye Dawson: “Having a lawyer father, I understood what a legal career could do – not just for me, but for those I care about and those I have not even met. There have been countless times where someone has come to my father on their worst day and after only a short period of time talking to them, he made them feel better about their situation.”

Norm Dawson: “As time went on my law school friends moved on to other positions. I have remained in the Public Defender’s Office. My career has been very eventful and most enjoyable. I love litigating and there is no better place to be a trial attorney.”

We are excited to announce the launch of a brand new blog series, “McGeorge Legacies!

Keep an eye here as we share stories from current McGeorge students and their alumni parents, siblings, and other family. They’ll share details about what drew them to law school, challenges they’ve faced, what they’ve learned while practicing law, and some of their proudest accomplishments. If you want to read first-hand accounts about law school and careers across several different legal fields, you won’t want to miss these stories from our very own McGeorge community.

Attention 2L’s! SMUD Law Clerk Opportunity, Deadline to apply: Dec. 1, 2021

The General Counsel’s Office at the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) has two (2) Law Clerk positions to fill. Interested students must be available to begin work in late May 2022. Each position is full time (40 hours per week) during the summer and part time (20 hours per week) during the school year. The position description is provided below:

Law Clerk Position Description:

Be a part of an organization nationally known for innovation, leadership, customer focus, and environmental stewardship. Law clerks work closely with all SMUD attorneys and gain experience in various facets of our business. Research and writing projects may relate to water law, environmental law, energy law, employment law, contracts, legislation, torts, business laws, intellectual property, litigation, arbitration, administrative hearings, and more. Additional opportunities for personal development are available by shadowing SMUD attorneys at trials, hearings, depositions, site visits, and internal client meetings. The salary range is $29.00 – $31.00 per hour and benefits are not included. The two positions are a one-year commitment from May 2022 to May 2023 and students must be available to start full time (40 hours per week) in late May 2022 and work part time (20 hours per week) during the 2022-2023 school year. Students sought have an interest in learning and excellent research and writing skills.

TO APPLY: Upload your cover letter, resume, writing sample and your most recent law school transcript to the DOCUMENTS tab on McGeorgeCareersOnline (MCO), then go to the OCI tab and select the session: SMUD Recruitment, Summer 2022 and submit your application materials. The deadline to apply is Wednesday, December 1, 2021, and virtual interviews will be scheduled in late January 2022. (No phone calls please).

Please contact Isabella Hannon directly if you have any questions on this great opportunity at or 916.739.7339.

In 2021, the peak of the coronavirus, the McGeorge Unity Caucus (UC) saw a gap in much needed resources. Specifically, our students were not receiving the same opportunities to network as they had been when we could be in person. Additionally, in reviewing the yearly goals, one such gap was the lack of education on how to review the diversity initiatives of employers. In the legal field it is currently trendy to claim diversity and diversity initiatives, but some such claims do not hold as much weight as others. After brainstorming methods to address this issue, the idea of a resume collect and mixer was discussed. It would be paired with a discussion going over methods students can use to check firms’ websites for their diversity initiatives and helpful questions to ask employers to determine their actual dedication to diversity issues.

Continue Reading 2021 Annual Diversity Mixer & Resume Collect | Where It All Started

Are you searching for resources to help grow your legal expertise, but don’t know where to start? Is law school harder and more stressful than you imagined it would be? Don’t worry, because help is here!

As an ABA law student, you are eligible for a free membership to ABA For Law Students. Gain access to exclusive job boards, bar prep discounts, networking opportunities, and much more. Check out the link above and start taking advantage of your membership!

As 1Ls prepare application materials in a bid to participate in the 2022 SCBA Diversity Fellowship, John Gutierrez (’23) shared his experience as a fellow in last year’s program and what it has done for his law school journey. Read John’s story below:

John Gutierrez, ’23

“I have always loved storytelling. As a child, my mother would lull me to bed with old Mexican-heritage stories from her abuelita that painted reminiscent pictures of Jalisco’s red-dirt ranches that we would visit in the hot summers. Although I did not know it at the time, these stories were my first cultural connection to my Mexican heritage. Their folkloric lessons introduced me to my family values and, in time, taught me to love my Chicano identity that seemed ever fleeting as my family assimilated into an American lifestyle.

Continue Reading Student Spotlight: John Paolo Gutierrez (’23)

The CDO is excited to announce a new way to schedule your career advising appointments via Squarespace Scheduling! No more playing phone tag or back-and-forth emails needed to set up your next appointment – just pick a date and time and you’re set! Whatever your needs may be, we’ve got you covered. (Note: This will replace the scheduling feature on McGeorgeCareersOnline.)

Click the button at the top of the sidebar to schedule a meeting with a career advisor now or scan the QR code below to make an appointment from your phone!


CDO Scheduling QR code

You will be prompted to download the Scheduling app upon first scanning.

First-generation law students often find themselves facing unique challenges and difficulties that many of their peers do not. From the general environment and structure of law school, to financial matters, networking, and even simply feeling like you belong with your cohort, it can be extremely taxing to try facing these issues by yourself. However, first-generation law students at McGeorge are in good company because you are not alone!

A significant portion of each incoming class at McGeorge are either first-generation college students or first-generation law students who can empathize with and support one another, in addition to receiving the support of faculty and staff. You can share experiences and insights with your fellow first-generation students and take advantage of McGeorge’s resources, like the CDO, Alumni Network and Alumni Mentors, the Center for Inclusion and Diversity, and many student organizations. If you are a first-generation law student, be sure to check out these tips for overcoming the unique challenges you may face.

We are all in this together, and no one needs to make the journey alone.

The Career Development Office (CDO) at McGeorge provides students with tools and resources for lifelong professional development in the legal community. Whether you are a 1L still trying to figure things out or a recent graduate, the CDO is here to help you be your best when looking for a job. Join us at one (or several!) of our many career-oriented events throughout the year, take advantage of our networking resources, or make an appointment to review your application materials and discuss your career goals and the best path to achieve them. With an experienced team leading the way, the CDO gives students at McGeorge a leg up on the competition.

Dean Molly Stafford is the Assistant Dean of the Career Development Office & External Relations and is a 2002 graduate of Northeastern University School of Law. She came to McGeorge from California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. (CRLA), where she was a staff attorney and manager of the CRLA Rural Fair Housing Center (RFHC). During her 4 years at CRLA, she practiced civil litigation in many areas of law — wage/hour, landlord/tenant, real property, unlawful termination and special education — and provided state-wide fair housing litigation support to CRLA’s 21 offices. Continue Reading The CDO Welcomes You to a New School Year!

McGeorge alumna and Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman associate Melissa Aristizabal (’17) was recently appointed to the New York City Bar Association Minorities in the Profession Subcommittee for a second year. Committee work is a service that, given the opportunity, we encourage all lawyers participate in because it allows for exploration of personal interests outside of day-to-day practice, in addition to the advances made to the community. We are so proud of the impact being made across the country by McGeorge alumni, faculty, and staff.

Congratulations, Melissa!