Graduates and their guests will gather Sunday for commencement at the University of Virginia and the School of Law. As the community prepares for the celebration, read more about the Class of 2024 and their achievements in the stories below.

Graduate Profiles and Career Accolades

Camano Capitalized on Multiple Abilities
Despite facing physical and health challenges from a significant congenital condition, Joseph Camano juggled academics, sports and music.

From the Lagoon to the Libel Show to Law Grad
James Hornsby directed the school’s comedy sketch show and was involved in a host of other student activities.

Following a Dream Once Deferred, Leonard To Join Marine Judge Advocates
Meet Lauren Leonard, vice president of Older Wiser Law Students and a future Marine judge advocate lawyer, who chased two deferred dreams at once at UVA Law.

23rd Powell Fellow To Address Housing Disputes
Michael Pruitt will provide legal support to public benefits recipients as the 23rd Powell Fellow in Legal Services.

Zipperer Wins School’s First Immigrant Justice Corps Fellowship
Grace Zipperer will serve as an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow at the Empire Justice Center in New York.

10 Students in the Class of 2024 Will Take on Roles in the Federal Government
Ten students in the Class of 2024 have obtained positions with the federal government after graduation.

JAG Officers Enhance Legal Education With UVA LL.M. Degrees
Already equipped with their J.D.s, five military lawyers furthered their legal education by earning master’s degrees.

Leaders and Award-Winners

Crowley, Hernandez Tragesser Receive Rosenbloom Award
Casey Crowley and Sophia Hernandez Tragesser received the Law School’s 2024 Rosenbloom Award, which honors students with a strong academic record who have significantly enhanced the academic experience of their peers.

41st Annual Softball Tournament Brings Home Record $40,000 for Charity
Andrew Becker ’24 was this year’s NGSL commissioner, and Sally Levin and Grace Stevens were tournament directors.

Hudson Wins Swanson Award
Keegan Hudson was this year’s recipient of the Gregory H. Swanson Award, named in honor of the first Black student to attend UVA and the Law School.

Citron, Hornsby, Hudson and Putfark Named Ritter Scholars
Julia Jean “JJ” Citron, James Hornsby, Keegan Hudson and Elizabeth Putfark were named the 2023-24 Ritter Scholars.

UVA Law Tax Moot Court Team Finishes Fourth
Kathryn Kenny, Kathryn Peters and Riley Ries were part of this year’s International and European Tax Moot Court competition.

Jessup Moot Court Team Competes in International Rounds
Daniel Elliott was part of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition team, which advanced to the international rounds.

Singsank Clinches Pickleball Title for UVA
Lauralei Singsank scored the winning shot for UVA at the pickleball collegiate national championship.

Gray, Maliyekkal Win 95th Lile Moot Court Competition
Sean Gray and Aquila Maliyekkal won the 95th William Minor Lile Moot Court Competition.

Adams Named Tillman Scholar
Tyler Adams, a U.S. Army veteran, was named a 2023 Tillman Scholar.

Ahmad Named Inaugural Women’s Health Summer Fellow
Salwa Ahmad worked at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as the Law School’s inaugural Women’s Health Summer Fellow.

Hamilton Wins UVA Oratory Competition
Peter Lee Hamilton won UVA’s third annual student oratory competition.

Flanagan Wins Notre Dame Writing Competition
Caitlin Flanagan won third place in Notre Dame Law School’s Program on Church, State & Society annual writing competition.

Cerja Leads Student Bar Association
Tommy Cerja IV served as president of the Student Bar Association.

Assefa Leads Virginia Law Review
Biruktawit “Birdy” Assefa served as editor-in-chief of the Virginia Law Review.

Gorman Honored for Highest GPA
Haley Gorman won the Carl M. Franklin Prize for earning the highest GPA after two semesters and the Jackson Walker LLP Award for the highest GPA after four semesters.

Star Witnesses – Q&As With Students

Clark Builds Relationships as Therapist, Student Ambassador
Kirsten Clark, a former therapist, discussed how therapy and lawyering skills intersect, and what she enjoys about representing the school as an ambassador.

Deering Grows His Portfolio
Tristan Deering explained how his international business experience drew him to corporate and tax law.

Heck on the ‘Appeal’ of Law School
Hunter Heck discussed her path to law school and how she prepared for the William Minor Lile Moot Court competition.

Kijewski Bridges Generations
Jordan Kijewski talked about volunteering with Madison House and working for AmeriCorps before coming to law school.

Experiences Drive Mato To Help Others
Sabrina Mato explored her interest in immigration law and her interest in building bridges among student communities.

Mercado Violand Advises Governor
As he was starting his law student career, Fernando Mercado Violand was appointed to the Virginia Council on Environmental Justice.

Onwualu Trades in Playbooks for Casebooks
Sean Onwualu, a former Syracuse football player and sports agency extern, discussed his most interesting classes and meeting Justice Stephen Breyer.

Sharma Tackles Sovereign Debt Law
Rishabh Sharma, a former math teacher and wrestling coach, said he enjoyed studying international debt law at UVA Law while also working toward a master’s in education policy.

Experiencing the Law

Gray, McNerney Win Appeal at Sixth Circuit
Sean Gray and Lauren McNerney recently won their case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit through the Appellate Litigation Clinic.

Ahmad, Hallisey Explore Health Care Issues in Kenya
Students — including Salwa Ahmad and Sydney Hallisey — traveled to Kenya for their annual research trip over winter break, spending seven days learning about health care rights and related issues in the East African nation.

Hild, Pritchard Win on Appeal for Ukrainian Client
Harry Hild and Meg Pritchard succeeded in a federal court appeal, allowing their client to remain in the U.S. after facing deportation to Ukraine.

Students Report on Transformative UN Trip
Students in the International Human Rights Law Clinic — Maya Artis, Camille Blum, Nora Logsdon and Jina Shin — traveled to the U.N. headquarters in New York for a unique learning experience.

Students Teach Business Law Classes to Incarcerated
Eight students — including Io Jones, Sumit Kapur, Katherine Poppiti and Liam Zeya — participated in a pilot program teaching business law classes to incarcerated people.

Ferguson, Hachten Help Pass Mental Health Reforms
Michael Ferguson and Clare Hachten of the State and Local Government Policy Clinic worked with state Sen. Creigh Deeds on bills to reform temporary detention orders, or TDOs, which allow courts to direct a law enforcement officer to take an at-risk person into custody and transport them to a specified facility for mental health treatment.

Zipperer, Human Rights Project Studies Argentina’s Post-Dirty War Justice
Eight students, including Grace Zipperer, traveled to Argentina to learn about human rights initiatives in Latin America in the aftermath of a Dirty War and military dictatorship.

Ahmad, Surgil Witness Tense Dialogue at OAS General Assembly
Students in the International Human Rights Law Clinic attended the Organization of American States’ 52nd General Assembly in Lima, Peru, in October. The students — including Salwa Ahmad and Sabrina Surgil — recounted some of what they experienced there.

Ratliff, Stein Practice To Be Lawyers
In this photo essay, William “Trey” Ratliff and Elizah Stein competed in first-year oral arguments.

When They Were First-Years

Ahmad, Keck Receive Virginia Public Service Scholarships
Salwa Ahmad and Molly Keck were the 2021 recipients of the Virginia Public Service Scholarship.

First-Year UVA Law Students Receive Top Scholarship for Leadership
Learn about five students — Jacob Baltzegar, Kayla Duperrouzel, Ricardo Hughes, Zain Imam and Lauralei Singsank — who received a Karsh-Dillard Scholarship.

Class of 2024 Sets Records in Academic Strength, Diversity
Meet five 1Ls profiled among the entering class: Michael Martinez, Julie Mardini, Biruktawit “Birdy” Assefa, Tom Harrigan and Sam Bennett.

Scalia Carries on Family Tradition
For incoming student Megan Scalia, pursuing a J.D. wasn’t a foregone conclusion.

Incoming Law Student Gained Insights on Justice as TV News Reporter
TV news journalist Dennis Ting unclips his microphone to join the incoming first-year class.

Incoming Law Student Aims To Help Fellow Soldiers
Army officer William “Trey” Ratliff came to UVA Law with plans to join the Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps — and later fulfilled his goal.

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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