2018 Commencement Ceremony & Reception
- Ceremony: 10 a.m. Friday, May 11, Georgia State Sports Arena, 125 Decatur St., Atlanta, GA 30303
- Reception: Noon-2 p.m. Friday, May 11, College of Law, 85 Park Place NE, Atlanta, GA 30303
While at Georgia State Law, Karina Deochand (B.S. ’15, J.D. ’18) took advantage of several opportunities that piqued her interest in pursuing a legal career in an area with an international scope.
As a member of the Georgia State Law team, she competed in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot Competition in Vienna on March 23 – 30. More than 360 teams from 82 countries participated in the 25th annual competition.
“My experience as part of the competition is second to none. I grew exponentially as a student, a writer and an advocate. I was able to network with professionals who practice international commercial arbitration and see what it looks like at their firms and in their home countries,” Deochand said. “In Vienna, I was exposed to the different shapes advocacy takes in different countries. American advocacy is very unique and considered more adversarial than the way it is practiced in many other countries. It gave me a more worldwide view of the different roles lawyers can fill.”
During her 2017 spring break, she and and eight classmates eight classmates spent nine days in Costa Rica with Professor Jonathan Todres exploring children’s rights issues, including child migration, education and how children’s rights law is implemented in practice.
“The experience was incredible because we met all the players in child welfare in Costa Rica – from grassroots charities within underserved communities, to immigration attorneys, to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. I’m extremely proud of my class because we were able to give back to the communities that taught us so much,” Deochand said.
Deochand graduated from Georgia State with an economics degree and decided on Georgia State Law because she had observed how successful its graduates are and knew she’d receive a “quality legal education.”
“Georgia State Law has a great offering of practical classes where students can gain actual work experience. Through Health Legislation & Advocacy, I worked with a health law-related community advocacy group and learned how to handle the research and drafting of state legislation,” Deochand said.
“Also, with the Fundamentals of a Law Practice class, I was sworn in under the Third-Year Practice Act, given a student bar number, and was able to appear before a judge and negotiate a temporary protective order for a domestic violence victim,” she said. “Although these experiences are completely different, I was able to expand and diversify my skillset through my coursework.”
Deochand’s credits Professor Todres and adjunct professor Shelby Grubbs for influencing the area of law she plans to pursue after taking the bar exam.
“Professors Todres and Grubbs really changed the way I approached law school. They showed me the different routes a J.D. can take that are not considered traditional but are still available and attainable.”