Ask the Grad: Class of 2020

The Villanova University Charles Widger School is pleased to celebrate the graduates of the Class of 2020. This impressive group of students joins a tight-knit community of more than 10,000 Villanova Lawyers.

Before they leave us on May 15, we asked members of the Class of 2020 to share more about their Villanova Law experience.

 

Emily Bley ’20

Student Works Editor, Villanova Law Review
President, Women’s Law Caucus

Emily Bley '20

What are you going to miss most about Villanova Law?

What I am going to miss most about Villanova Law is the sense of community. The faculty, staff, and students at Villanova Law were always willing to help, listen, encourage, and celebrate. I will miss the collective excitement I felt in acing a cold call, getting a job offer, or finishing a finals season. I will also miss the collective support I felt when I was struggling in a class, feeling tired, or stressed out about finding balance in my life. I credit the people at Villanova Law for making my law school experience so extraordinary.

What is your most memorable experience from Villanova Law?

My most memorable experience from Villanova Law was writing and editing for the Villanova Law Review. It was a lot of work, but it was also a lot of fun to write on a topic about which I was so passionate, to meet new students in various years above and below me, and to work on a multitude of different articles about interesting legal issues. Also, I’ll never forget how exciting it was to have my own article published in my 2L year!

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

I am most looking forward to practically applying all that I’ve studied in theory for three years – it’s really rewarding knowing that I can have a “real-world” impact on people and organizations because of what I’ve learned at Villanova Law!

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

My advice to the incoming Villanova Law Class of 2023 is to have some perspective; doing well in law school is important, but it shouldn’t be your whole life. Set aside time and space for things that make you feel happy. Put down the books once in a while and go to a concert, or go to the movies, or go on a weekend road trip! Some of my best memories with my law school friends had absolutely nothing to do with law school. There will always be more studying to do, so leave room for fun and spontaneity. 

Sam England ’20

President, Student Bar Association

Sam-England-2020

What are you going to miss most about Villanova Law?

What I will miss most about Villanova Law are the people. Staff, faculty, and peers have transformed this place into a home. To each of them, I am overcome with gratitude, and I look forward to making them proud.

What is your most memorable experience from Villanova Law?

Professor Samahon took a group of us to watch oral argument at the Supreme Court. This had long been a dream of mine and was well worth the five hours in line and 1AM wake-up. Although, let’s be honest: I could not sleep the night before anyway.

What advice would you give the incoming Villanova Law Class of 2023?

I would pass along the best advice I received: “leave nothing out.” These three years will fly by, and, for many of you, it will be the last formal education you endure. You should soak up everything you possibly can, leaving nothing—and no one—out.

Lauren Knafo ’20

Student Works Editor, Villanova Law Review
Chairperson, Honor Board

Lauren-Knafo-2020

What is your most memorable experience from Villanova Law?

My most memorable experience at Villanova Law was being there with my brother, Josh, who was a grade above me. As we had done in high school and college (where I also followed him to), we were able to take a class together, providing some of the best and everlasting memories.

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

I am most looking forward to building a practice based on the foundation that Villanova Law has given me and giving back to the Villanova community. I am ready to carry the “truth, unity, and love” Villanova has instilled in me into my life and the legal profession.

What advice would you give the incoming Villanova Law class of 2023?

My best advice to incoming law students is to focus on a goal that will propel your motivation; forgive yourself during turbulent times; and find solace in your family and friends. It’s a challenging three years that are rewarding, fruitful, and full of memories!

Katherine Prudente ’20

Student Works Editor, Villanova Law Review
Chairperson, Honor Board

Katie-Prudente-2020

What is your most memorable experience from Villanova Law?

My most memorable experience from Villanova Law was my first day of Property with Professor Caudill in 1L. We were beginning a new class and had a large casebook in front of us, and he spent the beginning of the class serenading us with his own songs about making sure to complete the work. It was very entertaining.

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

As I begin my next chapter, I am looking forward to fully immersing myself in the legal community. Villanova was provided amazing opportunities to learn, both inside and outside the classroom. I am looking forward to diving into the legal community and continuing to learn.

What advice would you give the incoming Villanova Law class of 2023?

My advice to the incoming class of 2023 is to take advantage of every opportunity. Villanova provides so many opportunities to learn, both in class, in conferences at the school, and in extra-curriculars. You won’t realize until it’s over how fast it went!

Rodrigo Rivera ’20

Vice Chair, Moot Court Board
President, First Generation Lawyers Group

Rodrigo-Rivera-2020

What are you going to miss most about Villanova Law?

Undoubtedly I will miss the people most. There is a unique camaraderie and community that exists in the building. The hellos and jokes from faculty, staff and students throughout the day helped make law school a less arduous journey.

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

I am honored to be entering legal practice in Philadelphia. I think Philadelphia offers a similar sense of support as Villanova Law. Philadelphia is a place where experienced attorneys want to be mentors and teach younger attorneys. I am excited to become a part of that network!

What advice would you give the incoming Villanova Law class of 2023?

Every person counts. At the end of law school, you look back and realize how important everyone you meet is to your journey and success as a law student. Whether it’s a faculty member, classmate, alumni, or staff member everyone adds a perspective to your view of the world and that will make you a better lawyer and advocate!

Abby Wilson ’20

President, Fashion Law Society
JD/MBA Candidate

Abby-Wilson-2020

What are you going to miss most about Villanova Law?

The people! The outstanding professors and wonderful friends I had the privilege of getting to know during my three years at Villanova Law made my experience unforgettable and significantly more fun.

What is your most memorable experience from Villanova Law?

Putting on the Fashion Law Symposium this year – the only entirely student-run CLE granting event at the law school – and seeing three years of my involvement and a full year of planning come to life.

What are you most looking forward to as you begin your next chapter?

Building on the strong legal foundation and skillset I acquired at Villanova in a new environment.

What advice would you give the incoming Villanova Law class of 2023?

Be kind to one another, and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. Law school is a brand-new experience for you and all your classmates, but your professors and older students have been exactly where you are – they want to help you and share their experiences!