With the start of a new academic year only weeks away, several leaders are taking the helm of student organizations to kick off a fresh slate of activities.
Hannah Abigail Brammer is one of the new student leaders on campus. Brammer, who is starting her third year of law school, will serve as president of the Student Bar Association (SBA), which is the official student government of the S.J. Quinney College of Law. The SBA plans student activities, organizes a mentor program for first-year law students and assist in the creation of other programs to help law students.
The SBA also serves as the Student Advisory Committee (SAC) and elected student government of the College of Law. As voting members of the College Council, SBA Board members serve as representatives of the student body to this decision-making body of the law school —affecting policies regarding curriculum, grades, class and exam scheduling and legal clinics. The SBA participates in faculty retention, promotion and tenure evaluations. And on the lighter side, the SBA also sponsors social events, philanthropic efforts for local non-profits and intramural sports.
Brammer will begin her new post after spending the summer as a law clerk for the Utah Attorney General’s Office in the Division of Public Utilities and Highways. She spoke to the S.J. Quinney College of Law about her path to law school and her new role serving as president of SBA in a Q&A.
Q: Why did you decide to go to law school?
A: Honestly, when I was in the 5th grade I watched Legally Blonde and I was sold. As I grew up, I looked further into the profession and found a great interest in the career. Law school has always been the goal and I can’t believe that I only have a year left!
Q: What drew you to the University of Utah out of the many law school choices out there?
A: I was drawn to the hands-on experience through the clinics. Also, the small class size was a huge draw for me. I appreciate that we can connect with students, faculty, and staff on a more personal level.
Q: You’re the new SBA president. For those in the university community unfamiliar with this role, describe what this job entails. Also, what’s your vision for taking on this role —and for what SBA will accomplish in the coming academic year?
A: Essentially, the SBA president is in charge of the Student Bar Association which is a student organization that all of the students are members. I have the chance to work with deans, professors, and staff on behalf of the student body to help make the school a better place. This year, the SBA will be focused on creating unity between the classes through activities and events. Also, we want to be a more approachable and inclusive organization, so we will be offering opportunities for more people to be involved in SBA.
Q: What have been your favorite courses/experiences at the law school so far?
A: I loved Professor Heiny’s evidence class. It was great to learn about the rules of the courtroom and have a better grasp of how they all work together. Another class that I loved was Professor Guiora’s counterterrorism class. It was very outside of my comfort zone and it taught me to think on my feet, effectively work with a group, and be more comfortable with communicating under stress.
Q: What are your hopes for a career path following graduation?
A: I want to pursue a career in real estate law. I’m really interested in urban planning and I think that a lot of U.S. cities are on the cusp of exciting and modern development; I would like to be a part of that.