Chanelle Jones

Hometown: Elkton, Maryland

Education:

  • University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC); Majors: Political Science and Sociology; Minor: Africana Studies

Job: Ballard Spahr LLP, Associate

Program: Full-Time Day

Temple Law Community

I was drawn to Temple Law because I could tell that the student body prioritized both thriving academically and contributing to the community within the school and surrounding areas. Here, it is the norm for students to be passionate and involved.

During my time at Temple Law, I was involved with Temple Law Review, the Black Law Students Association (BLSA), the Rubin-Presser Social Justice Fellowship, the Law & Public Policy Program, and I served as a Law Owl Ambassador for Admissions. These experiences outside of the classroom shaped my character, work ethic, and professional identity in ways beyond what I hoped.

Before law school, I had a surface-level understanding of networking. Through the BLSA community, I connected with professors, staff, alumni, Temple students of all years, and students at other law schools. Being the 2018-19 BLSA President taught me the importance of true relationship building, and it was an honor to continue BLSA’s legacy.

As a staff editor for Temple Law Review, my favorite aspect was writing my Comment. Here I was able to hone my legal research and writing skills while working on a topic of my choosing with free reign on how I wanted to morph my ideas. As Managing Editor, I assisted twenty-three staff editors through the writing process of their own Note or Comment. Reading about so many different topics and editing students’ writing made me a better writer. Also, as the first Diversity Editor, I helped lay a foundation that will make the Law Review a more diverse and welcoming experience.

Faculty Impact

The Law and Public Policy (LPP) Program directed by Professor Nancy Knauer truly shaped my legal education and career trajectory. And I owe a lot of that to Professor Knauer. I considered a Master’s in Public Policy, and the LPP Program gave me the knowledge and experience I was looking for in a quarter of the time. Through the Program, I even had a chance to meet former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates and hear Justice Sonia Sotomayor speak at a conference.

In class, Professor Knauer encourages civil discourse, and it is a place “where great minds don’t think alike.” Outside of the classroom, I was given multiple opportunities to practice my public speaking and presentation skills; one of which included presenting my policy paper at an international conference in Washington, D.C.

Further, Professor Knauer supported my goals from the very beginning, and at times, I think she believes in me more than I believe in myself. I have truly appreciated her guidance throughout law school, especially as a first-generation law student.

Experiential Learning

While at Temple, I participated in three experiential opportunities (Education Law Center, School District of Philadelphia, and Federal Judicial Clerkship Honors Program) and two direct service based student organizations (School Discipline Advocacy Service and Name Change Project).

Through each experiential opportunity, I learned about being a lawyer by reading, writing, and analyzing the work of other attorneys. Each experience allowed me to apply what I was learning in the classroom, and the feedback I received consistently made me better. Also, participating in service-based student organizations reminded me why I went to law school. For example, as a 1L, I was able to process name change applications and connect with communities that I care about and I want to serve.

Law School Lessons

Dean Donald Harris says law school is like a wet rag full of opportunities, by the end you want to have wrung the rag dry. The classroom experience is important, and at Temple, you will be learning from some of the best. However, Temple has so many enriching experiences to offer outside of the classroom, and those experiences are where Temple lawyers are made.