Owen Praskievicz, Class of 2013
Legal interests: Securities Regulation
Bachelor's degree: BA in Journalism and Economics, University of Maryland, 2007
Hometown: Wheaton, Maryland
Dream job: Novelist, after a lengthy career as a partner at a local firm
Quote: Law school, at its best, is a stage to amplify the talents that already distinguish us and sculpt them into a profession that dictates social dynamics.
1) What made you decide to come to USD School of Law?
Coming from the East coast, the lure of California and the school’s stature in San Diego were enough to draw my interest. Having family who graduated from USD School of Law and who now lead balanced and successful lives only solidified the decision. The school’s world-class faculty is a fantastic bonus. Plus, who wouldn’t want to live by the beach for three years?
2) During your first week here, what was one of the first things that impressed you?
Surprisingly, there were a handful of pretty cool, insanely bright students that I clicked with right away. Friends are essential and USD attracts a pretty dynamic student body. While my influences continue to evolve, those same friends are part of the core of who I hang out with today.
3) What activities have you been involved in at USD School of Law?
From mock trial competitions to being on a softball team that was mercy-ruled every game, I’ve explored much of what the school has to offer. I also worked for the Law Publications office on campus, which was a great environment to study and write. Making the Moot Court Associate Board and the San Diego Law Review also kept me quite busy.
4) How hard is law school? Is it more or less work than you thought?
The difficulty of law school – and what distinguishes it from other time-consuming jobs that demand your best – is how we’re judged by our peers and professors on a daily basis and how one’s career prospects are often based entirely on grade performance. It’s that pressure that makes law school “hard.” But at the end of the day, while all that is important, it should never define who and what you are. It’s simply motivation to get up in the morning.
5) What is the best thing that has happened to you here at law school?
Discipline and focus. The fact that my attention drifts from interest to interest has always prevented me from excelling at one thing. Law school demands a singular focus and eventually your priorities fall into a hierarchy. That clarity allows you to be efficient with your time and provides a foundation to explore your other interests.
6) What is some of your previous professional experience? How did that experience help you decide to go to law school?
Journalism, private equity, teaching … everything I’ve done in some way contributed to my decision to go to law school. The skill set involved in journalism – clarity in writing, strict deadlines, recognizing the different sides to a story – all transitions well to law school. Working for a cut-throat financial firm in New York trained me to have the work ethic necessary to do well. Teaching English in Brazil instilled in me the conviction that, even if you desire money, you have to be challenged on some ideological or intellectual level. I’m in the right place.
7) What advice would you give to a prospective student? What things might you have done differently?
If you’re smart, talented and driven, law school is not a bad place to polish yourself. Work hard and you’ll have no regrets.