This is the last week of work for our summer law clerk, Karen Perez-Wilson. She has been an absolute pleasure. One of her last assignments was to write two blog posts about her experiences with us this summer. This is her first post. As you will see, I think she is gunning for ice cream, too.
My name is Karen Perez-Wilson, I am a second-year law student at the University of Wisconsin Law School. For the last ten weeks, I have had the pleasure of being the summer Law Clerk at OG+S. It is bittersweet for me to write this blog post because it means that my time at OG+S is ending. Though I am excited to return to UW Law to complete my second year, I am sad to be leaving the firm.
When I spoke to Erin about writing this blog post, she encouraged me to share my experience honestly. “You don’t have to write nice things,” she said. Although I giggled at her response, it reaffirmed how fortunate I was to be working at a firm that values transparency, encourages honesty, and leads by example.
As a first-generation law student, I had no idea what to expect this summer. I had done pro-bono legal work as an undergraduate student but had never worked at a firm. Although I knew it was my imposter syndrome talking, I was nervous about disappointing them and scared I was not smart enough.
From the get-go, the Attorneys and Staff at OG+S welcomed me with open arms. They validated my feelings and reminded me that “I wasn’t supposed to know it all.” Hearing this lifted an immense pressure off my shoulders and allowed me to embark on this new journey with an open and curious mind.
During my first work week, I scheduled individual conferences with each team member. I was eager to meet everyone I would be working with for the next ten weeks and was pleasantly surprised to learn I had so much in common with them. For example, the three partners that make up OG+S are first-generation just like me. Learning this gave me great comfort because they knew what it was like being the first one in their families to navigate law school and this profession. I felt welcomed, but most importantly I felt understood. Everyone I spoke to not only demonstrated a desire to get to know me personally, but they also wanted to do everything in their power to help guide and support me.
Every conference allowed me to learn more about everyone’s journeys and how they ended up at OG+S. I could tell how much they cared about each other and their clients. They spoke about the approachable office culture and how important it was to maintain a healthy and balanced work environment. After working there, I can testify this all to be true. Here at OG+S, people know that life happens, and things do not always go to plan, their flexibility and trust in one another is what makes this firm one that leads by example. They are not afraid to be different and always seek to make things as simple as possible for each other and their clients. I have done and achieved more than I expected these past 10 weeks. I now have exposure to an area of law that I did not know I would be interested in until now. If it were not for their trust, I would not have developed this new confidence and sense of belonging.
I would like to thank the State Bar of Wisconsin and Ogden Glazer + Schaefer for this tremendous opportunity. Without it, I would not have met my amazing colleagues who served as great mentors. I am leaving this experience as a better law student, but most importantly, as a better person.