Maria Monaghan, a 2017 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, will clerk for Justice Samuel Alito at the U.S. Supreme Court for the 2020 term.

Monaghan said clerking at the Supreme Court is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“I think Justice Alito is a brilliant judge, and I’m honored to work for him,” she said. “I’m also looking forward to learning more about the institution in general and working on cases that are argued by some of the best advocates in the country.”

The Law School is fourth after Yale, Harvard and Stanford in placing clerks on the U.S. Supreme Court since 2005.

Monaghan is wrapping up a two-year clerkship for Judge Ed Carnes of the Eleventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. She also clerked for Judge Amul R. Thapar of the Sixth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Thapar is a lecturer at the Law School.

“Both of my clerkships have been really foundational to who I am as a lawyer,” she said. “Judge Thapar and Judge Carnes have taught me more than I can attempt to express. They’re both phenomenal writers and dedicated teachers of the craft, and I feel really lucky to have been able to hone my skills in their chambers.”

Monaghan will join fellow alum Daniel Richardson ’18, who will clerk for Justice Stephen Breyer next term.

At UVA Law, Monaghan was articles development editor for the Virginia Law Review, a member of the Supreme Court Litigation Clinic and a research assistant for Professor Saikrishna Prakash. Along with Prakash, she also credits Professors Josh Bowers, George Geis, George Rutherglen, Frederick Schauer and Micah Schwartzman ’05 for contributing to her success.

“Professor Schwartzman helped me obtain this clerkship and all of my past clerkships. He’s been helping me for over five years, and I feel that his help has been a huge factor in my success,” Monaghan said. “I learned how to do historical research when I was working for Professor Prakash, which showed me that I really love to do that kind of work, so I was grateful for that opportunity.”

“Maria was a fabulous student, one of the sharpest and most sophisticated we have had in many years,” Schwartzman said. “I am thrilled for her success and excited for her future.”

Monaghan earned a B.A. in human resource management and labor studies from Rutgers University.

A record number of UVA Law alumni are clerking in courts across the nation during the 2019 term, including Jessica Wagner ’15, who is clerking for Alito.

Founded in 1819, the University of Virginia School of Law is the second-oldest continuously operating law school in the nation. Consistently ranked among the top law schools, Virginia is a world-renowned training ground for distinguished lawyers and public servants, instilling in them a commitment to leadership, integrity and community service.

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