SBA Election Candidates

President

 

Michael Hewitt President

Michael Hewitt

Students today are faced with myriad hurdles entering the working world. Most of the desirable positions require an advanced degree, which in turn require excessive tuition payments, years of work, and few employment guarantees. Despite these hurdles, each of us made the decision to attend the University of San Francisco School of Law for a reason—whether it was the unique atmosphere, the location, the phenomenal faculty, diverse extra-curricular programs, or otherwise.
Now, the school—and the profession—finds itself in a state of transition, attempting to adapt the traditional law school experience to modern legal practice. 

As a candidate for SBA President, I view this change as an opportunity for us to create and maintain an academic experience that is collaborative, promotes professionalism, and inspires initiative. 

To achieve these goals, we must:

• Engage in each step of the short and long-term strategic planning process for the law school;
• Strengthen our core academic curriculum and bar preparation opportunities;
• Identify and implement new experiential and career development programs;
• Create efficient and intuitive feedback mechanisms that allow the administration and faculty to adapt curriculum and career goals based on student need;
• Celebrate our national, religious, ethnic, and educational backgrounds by promoting student programming and community outreach;
• Consolidate and streamline our technology support and communication processes for (or between) students, student organizations, and administration and faculty; and
• Provide more opportunities for current and future students to engage with other law students, practitioners, and experts in their career fields. 

You should elect me as your SBA President because I will utilize both my academic and professional experience to accomplish these shared goals. 

I am qualified for this position because I have a long history of leadership experience. As an undergraduate, I succeeded in crafting and leading a campaign to pass a fee referendum that raised $3.4 million towards renewable energy installations on campus. Similarly, while in law school, I served as the president of the Environmental Law Society, reviving a pertinent on-campus law student organization that provides various networking opportunities, career development seminars, and social events. In addition, I have served on the USF Law Review staff, competed in a patent Moot Court competition, served as a senior editor on the Intellectual Property Law Bulletin, and represented SBA as co-chair of the budget committee. 

As President, I will use this experience to support and inspire students in obtaining their own academic and career goals. Most importantly, if you choose me as your president, I vow to passionately represent the student voice to our administration and the greater law school community. Together we can build on the forward momentum to create the university that we are proud to attend.

Warm Regards,
Michael Hewitt, ‘15

 

Vice President (Full-Time)

 

Jerome Hawkins VP

Jerome Hawkins

The challenges we face as a law school and as law students are many, and some of them are complex, and although they are challenges we must face, we are more than empowered, intelligent, and creative enough to overcome them and thrive. 

As a 1L Representative over the past school year, I learned a lot about the Student Bar Association and the law school itself. I learned a lot about my classmates and their experiences here. Finally, I learned a lot about myself and what my role in the time I have here can be. Paying close attention to the ways and means of the Student Bar Association and to the work it does gave me an understanding of where we stand. I gained a somewhat unique perspective on the way things are done here, and with that understanding and perspective I’ve set myself to figuring out and implementing those things that could be done more effectively for the law school and for those here attending. 

What I want may not be exactly what you want. What you want may not be what I want. But I do believe in common ground, in obtaining what we want, in accomplishing the common goals we set, and in working together steadily for their accomplishment.
I am asking for your vote and I am asking for your confidence, that I may carry forward the interests, intentions and ideals we share in the role of Vice President of our Student Bar Association. Let’s bring to life our shared desire to make this law school a better place, not just for ourselves, but for the community and world around us and for the students coming after us.

Thank you,

Jerome Hawkins

Nicole Phillips VP

Nicole Phillips

This past year I’ve had the pleasure of serving USF as SBA Secretary. Through this position I have had the opportunity to work with a wide variety of my peers and administration, and I believe that the knowledge and experience I have gained make me an excellent candidate for SBA Vice President (Full-Time).

Last August, I was approached to fill the open position of Secretary, knowing very little about what the job entailed and the work that SBA is capable of accomplishing, I accepted the nomination whole-heartedly, and have never looked back. Since then, I’ve worked hard. I have taken initiative to fill in gaps and to add support where needed whether it has been as simple as covering Office Hours and cleaning the refrigerator, or more high stakes like representing the student voice in meetings with the Dean. I have become an integral member of SBA; being an advocate both within and for SBA, as well as a participant in developing and implementing important initiatives that will affect the future of USF. I’ve helped identify issues that students care about and have facilitated communication and action within SBA as well as in the Administration. 

I am very proud of the work that SBA has been able to accomplish this year, but I also know that there is still a lot of work to be done. This work cannot be accomplished if we are starting over from scratch again next year. Over the past year I have navigated the system that we work within, I have effectively built relationships with faculty members as well as Administrators, and contributed to developing long-term goals for the future of USF Law. Building that knowledge, experience and relationships takes time; but, if I am Vice President, next year’s Executive Board will already be in the position to begin implementing change and more effectively advocating for the student body even before Day One.

My goal for next year is simple: take advantage of the momentum that we’ve created to continue advancing the student voice in decisions affecting tuition, curriculum, clinics, career opportunities, and the future of the law school. USF is training us to be thoughtful, articulate, and passionate advocates, and as Vice President I promise to be your thoughtful, articulate, and passionate advocate as we shape our education and the future of the Law School.

This year I planned the 2L “Over the Hump Party” and as your Vice President, I look forward to continuing the tradition of planning annual events like the Fall and Spring BBQs, Fall Party, and Barrister’s Ball. I also hope to coordinate “extra-curricular” activities, to take advantage of the amazing city we call home and further strengthen the special feeling of community that makes USF unique among law schools.
We’ve done a lot of work, but there is still so much more to be done, and I hope that I’ve earned your trust to help shape the future of USF Law. Vote for me for SBA Vice President.

 

Treasurer

 

Max Hyatt Treasurer

Max Hyatt

My name is Max Hyatt and I am running for Treasurer. I am currently completing my second year of study in the joint JD/MBA program. I am qualified to handle all of the Student Bar Associations finances, budgetary and planning needs in the upcoming academic year. My goal as Treasurer is to simplify and expedite the processes around funding, refunds and projections for both clubs and individual students. I want the student body to have the financial support they need to put on great events, attend networking opportunities while satisfying all of the Student Bar Association’s needs. 

Before I started at University of San Francisco, I was working with small businesses and hedge funds both in quantitative analysis and strategic business planning. I continue to work with startups seeking venture funding as an intern at Sand Hill Angels. I perform financial analysis and general due diligence for applicant companies and provide strategic advice for entrepreneurs. 

During my last year of study at USF’s Graduate Business School, I have completed courses in analytics, economics and finance. I work closely with several finance and analytics professors on personal projects. I plan to leverage these connections to expand and evolve our current finance processes to increase our ability to fund the projects students are passionate about. 

I am currently involved in both the Student Bar Association and the Graduate Business Association. Over the past year, I have gained valuable experience in both groups and am ready to take more responsibility in the Student Bar Association. I will enable students and clubs to put on great events and provide as much financial support as possible to the student body. I am excited to become your next SBA Treasurer and am available to answer any questions you might have.

 

Secretary

 

Jack Ferguson Secretary

Jack Ferguson

The biggest reason I decided to make USF my new home two years ago was the pride it takes in its community. The sense of camaraderie, purpose, and drive permeates the campus, and is a primary factor in what makes the school so special. We laugh together, cry together, and above all work together so that we can change the world from here. 

Over the past year, SBA has strived to maintain and expand the level of engagement amongst our students, and by all accounts has been widely successful. As a team we held some truly incredible and unforgettable events. From Slosh Ball to Barrister's Ball, and everything in between, our school has come together like never before to keep our student body strong, and I am pleased to say that I took an active role in this effort as a member of SBA and co-chair of the Communications Committee. From my position, I focused heavily on the SBA website. With the help of my colleagues, we have made the website a central resource for the students. In the fall we updated the outline bank, providing new and updated outlines, and increased the bank to the largest it has ever been. We are excited to continue that process this semester, ensuring that students have the support they need to successfully weather the finals season. Furthermore, the website provides the information needed for student groups, it was the main tool for our Community Service Challenge, and it will be the central hub for information as we kick of this election season.

While the main function of the SBA Secretary is to collect and circulate information to students through email and social media, it is also to be a resource on campus that students can utilize. I pledge to be an asset to the entire student body so that every voice is heard, every concern addressed, and every topic discussed. My goal next year is to further bring together the incoming students, as well as the current body, in the hopes of reinforcing our community to usher about the change needed to confront the challenges our students face.

Moving forward, I would like to continue the work of my predecessors to keep our community thriving. I vow to embrace the role of SBA Secretary, to be a resource for all students, and to bring about the change our school deserves. It is with these aspirations that I humbly request your vote for Secretary of the Student Bar Association.

 

3L Class Representatives (Full-Time)

 

Christine MacDonald 3L Rep

Christine MacDonald

My Fellow 3Ls:

Over the course of our time together at USF, we have experienced vast changes. When I came to law school, I knew I would meet new and fascinating people, but I never expected to gain the tremendous network of talented, educated, young adults that I have found within our class. We have a chance to leave our mark as students and I believe in ensuring our reputation as the Class of 2015 is one to be remembered as a culture of leaders and innovators. As our time at USF comes to a close, I find it important to assume a leadership role within the Student Bar Association as our 3L Class Representative.

As our Class Representative, I believe we have the power to change the perspective of law students, to leave those behind us in awe, and to inspire future classes to be leaders of their generation. The last year has brought many changes for me, and I believe these changes make me uniquely qualified to accurately reflect and represent the needs of our class as we go out into the working world as proud alumni of the University of San Francisco.

My goals as 3L Class Representative are to assist in bringing together the Class of 2015 to create a passionate, informed, and well-represented reflection of the student body as a whole. As 3Ls, I believe we have a unique opportunity to be an example for the younger students and to lead with dignity and compassion for one another. I decided to attend USF when I was told it was a school of collaboration, not competition. So much of our world is spent fighting one another for the jobs, the pay, and the respect of others. Instead of focusing our attention on competition, I would like to shift the focus towards a collaborative effort to invest in our school as a whole, through a concerted effort to work together to change the direction of USF.

By representing our class during our final year, I plan to be actively involved in all aspects of SBA, as well as dedicating time to ensuring people have a sounding board for their issues with anything related to school or outside of school. I would like our class to leave USF with our heads held high, knowing we worked together, we worked hard, and we created a lasting impact for the future law classes of USF. This past year, I have personally learned what it means to be humble, to be a hero that no one sees, and how to have compassion and respect for my fellow students and those in the community. It has not been without struggle, but my experience has taught me that in order to accomplish great change, we must work together. I hope you will join in me this quest to give USF and the Class of 2015 the reputation it deserves.

Thank you.

 

2L Class Representatives (Full-Time)

 

Caitlin Conway 2L Rep

Caitlin Conway

My name is Caitlin Conway, and I am running for 2L Representative. I am excited for the opportunity to become more involved with the USF Law School community.
My main goal is to be the voice of our class by facilitating the dialogue between my classmates, the SBA, and the administration. As 2L Rep, my duty to my classmates would be of the utmost importance. Community will be especially important next year when we don’t have all of our classes together. Despite the hard work, I want law school to be a positive experience for everyone. We work hard, but who says we can’t also have fun?

I am qualified to represent the 2L class because of my strong leadership abilities. When I worked as an assistant manager and as a team lead, I set a positive example for my team members by taking on extra responsibilities and assignments, and by jumping at the opportunity to learn new things. This ability to adapt to new situations has so far brought me success in law school, and I want to take that further with a more prominent role in our law school community. 

My experience working in fast-paced environments has taught me to think quickly and objectively, to thrive under pressure, and to be a problem solver. Additionally, my background in theatre, fashion and art help me to think creatively and outside the box, and I am always open to new ideas. 

I have good communication skills, I’m easy to work with, and I’m a team player, which I have learned from working with all different types of people. When I was assistant manager of a boutique, I maintained relationships with a very diverse clientele. I worked with high school students when I was an alumni mentor for my old theatre company, and I worked with women who had been poverty stricken, who had been victims of domestic violence or drug abuse, and who had mental or physical disabilities, when I volunteered at the Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles’s Skid Row. 

I love USF, and I am very grateful for all of the wonderful friends I have made here. It would be an honor to serve my fellow students, to represent my class’s interests, and to give back to the law school community. I will do my very best to make sure that we all have a great 2014-2015 school year. Vote for me!

Genevieve Galman VP

Genevieve Galman

My name is Genevieve Galman and I am running for the 2L Class Representative for the Student Bar Association. One of the main reasons why I came to USF law is because of our strong community orientated student body here that no other law school has and that is why I ran for the 1L Representative this past fall. After serving as the 1L Representative for Section 2, I’ve grown to truly love my section, the 1L class and our school as a whole. I want to be your Class Representative again next year because I want to continue to develop and foster a strong community amongst our class and our school. As your 2L Representative, I will strive to advocate for your needs and concerns, inform you of all the resources and opportunities our school has to offer and most importantly, to make your experience here at USF Law worthwhile.

 

2L Class Representative (Part-Time)

 

Christina Fathi 2L Rep PT

Christina Fathi

My name is Christina Fathi, and I’m running for the Part-Time 2L Representative position for the upcoming academic year. This past year as a 1L, I’ve been involved in several of the student organizations on campus serving as the 1L representative for Section 3. Most of my Section 3 classmates work full-time and are unable to keep up with all the events and opportunities on campus. I wanted to represent my section and make sure they knew what was happening outside of the classroom and to know that their interests were being heard at the meetings. However, I feel serving as the SBA Part-Time 2L representative for my section will be more beneficial to my classmates as I will be able to better connect them not only to particular student organizations but rather to all of the student body and those in charge of implementing changes to our law school. 

Law school is not meant to be easy and especially not for the Part-Time evening students most of whom are working full-time and coming to class every night after a grueling day having woken up at 6 in the morning and then having class more 12 hours later at 6:30. I’ve come to know my classmates well because we are such a small group of only twenty-five students. However, I feel that because of our smallness in size compared to the other sections, my section mates almost always get overlooked and their concerns never heard. I’m concerned that Section 3 is not represented or notified of the opportunities and events on campus because most of my classmates are working all the time while trying to juggle time with their families and other responsibilities. So I want to make sure my section gets the same opportunities the other sections get while also having their concerns and opinions heard by the SBA.

I hope next year we can implement events on days when we may not have a Thursday night class and work with the student groups and administration so that evening students can be just as involved as day students. Additionally, events and workshops geared towards Part-Time student retention and time-management skills will be extremely useful to the working Part-Time students. 

Our upcoming 2L year will be a challenging one as most of us will be taking on more even more responsibilities, therefore I want to try to lessen the burden for my classmates by serving as liaison to the leadership of the school so that their voices get heard before changes are made without their knowledge or say. The Part-Time students are a diverse group of students with a lot of life experience that is beneficial to the student community as a whole and vital to the growth and future of USF School of Law.