A place for those studying pre-law to meet and support one another at Millersville has not always been available for students. Only in May of last year, The Pre-law Society of MU was established by passionate MU senior and pre-law student, Emmanuel Jean-Philippe, who recognized a need for an organization on campus.
Jean-Philippe describes classes for students participating in MU’s pre-law program as “rigorous” and “challenging.”
Students studying pre-law are recommended by the government department to take four classes: State and Local Government, American Judiciary, Constitutional Law I: Federalism and Separation of Powers, and Constitutional Law II: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.
The content of these classes prepare students for law school by helping them become informed citizens who will gain in depth knowledge of constitutional rights, learn aspects of writing case briefs, develop more knowledge of the inner workings of the American judicial branch of government and argue real pending cases in a U.S. Supreme Court mock trial, he said.
“Upon realizing that there was no organization to support Pre-Law students at Millersville University, I reached out to a few other Pre-law students about the possibility of starting such an organization. To my surprise, many students seemed very interested, and the rest was history. I merely saw an opportunity to provide a solution and made it happen,” said Jean-Philippe who is a co-founder and also the first president of the organization.
The goal of the Pre-Law Society of MU is to provide a more enriched learning experience for pre-law students and anyone interested in the law attending Millersville. The organization provides this experience “by administering and hosting programs such as law school tour trips; local, state, and federal court trips; guest speaker events; for example, lawyers, judges, law school admission directors, Mock Trials, and the like” Jean-Philippe said.
Students should consider becoming involved in this organization because they will have countless opportunities to prepare for their future career in law. Holding a position in the organization is a great experience and will look good on a law school resume, he said. Fellow students studying law can also provide helpful tips for difficult assignments or tests and students will be able to attend political events.
This year, members are currently preparing to participate in the American Mock Trial Association’s 2015 Regional Competition.
“It is the first time students from Millersville University have registered to compete and may face Ivy League schools,” Jean-Philippe said.
The general meetings are open to the public, and occur one Thursday a month chosen by the president. Currently, the Executive Board members are Elijah Green, president; Tyler Ryan, vice-president; Jeremiah Bernat; treasurer; and Brandon Smith; public relations officer. If you are interested in becoming a member, the organization currently has a few Executive Board and Executive Assistant opportunities available to all students.
For Jean-Philippe, this organization is just the beginning steps towards his future goals of one day becoming an attorney and running for public office.
“My short term goal is to one day become an Employment Lawyer or Personal Injury Lawyer. My long term goal is to one day become a U.S. Senator, U.S. Justice of the Supreme Court or a governor. I want to do something big, cool, fun and colossal. Becoming an elected public servant would be cool, because elected officials have the power to have enormous positive impact on the lives of the American people on a daily basis, by representing their voices and interests, although they don’t always do so,” he said.
In fact, as Jean-Philippe prepares to graduate in May, he is already in the planning phases of his 2015 campaign for Magisterial District Judge of Lancaster City’s 8th Ward.
The Pre-Law Society’s recent activities have been movie nights and guest speaker events. Some notable guest speakers who have visited the organization are Dr. McCollum, an attorney who works at Millersville University as Executive Deputy to the President and Howard Bauman, Deputy Chief of Millersville University Police. Multiple law school admission representatives have also attended.
Students can receive event information by liking the Pre-law Society of Millersville University Facebook page or through its getinvolved.millersville.edu page. Students can also contact the newly-elected President, freshman Elijah J. Green at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jean-Philippe believes that a career in politics requires hard work and a certain mindset. Only those who strive towards achieving their big dreams will unlock the secret to how ordinary people do extraordinary things.
“I know I have big dreams, but anything is possible so long as you have a plan and act on it. If you’re going to do something, why not aim to be the very best at it? I’d rather have tried and failed, than to have failed by not trying at all.”