History Major, 2010; Winner of the Charles I. Landis Award, 2009
Law Clerk, United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana
Being a history major prepared me for success immediately after I graduated from F&M. As a case investigator at a Manhattan law firm that specialized in complex class action litigation, I was asked to solve detailed factual problems in areas where I had little or no background knowledge. I approached these new issues by applying the critical reading skills I refined in my history classes, where I was required to discern trends and tie together seemingly disparate facts, all while not losing sight of the larger context. These techniques allowed me to quickly learn the material, and then engage in a dialogue regarding the topics I researched.
My history major paid even greater dividends in law school. In my legal writing classes, the focused and succinct writing style I learned from my history professors put me a step ahead of my classmates. The writing skills I learned as a history major also allowed me to effectively communicate in my work experiences during law school, which included positions in private practice and with the federal government. I was even able to draw upon the independent study paper I wrote during my senior year (on the Barbary pirates) to develop a paper on Somali piracy, which was published in 2015. Choosing to be a history major was the best decision I made at F&M!
Editor's Note: Andrew graduated from George Mason University School of Law on May 16, 2015, magna cum laude. In law school, he was a research editor on the George Mason Law Review and served as a writing fellow, where he helped instruct first-year law students in their legal writing classes.
"Choosing to be a history major was the best decision I made at F&M!"