My Story: From The Military To Stanford

On the public service side, I’m pursuing a certificate in public management and social innovation, a program in the business school that’s focused on the public service element of business.  I was also a pro bono guardianship co-leader, helping the caretakers of kids who had been abandoned gain legal guardianship. I don’t plan on practicing law—I’m not going to go the big law firm route—but I feel like I’ve gotten a lot from my law school classes.
I’m currently working as a publisher at a tech media startup, The Dish Daily. We cover entrepreneurship, startups, and innovation on university campuses. Still, I don’t have what I’m doing after graduation pinned down.
Stanford is all about the T-shaped scholar: someone who cuts across very different disciplines and has deep knowledge in one area. In general, the university is very multidisciplinary. There’s a healthy push to encourage students to pursue joint or dual degrees. The business school website says 20% of students take advantage of joint or dual degrees, and I would imagine the percentage is the same at the law school. I’m taking a computer science class this quarter, and I’ve taken classes in some of the other departments, too. With the JD/MBA, as long as you fulfill the main requirements of both schools, you’re golden.
Obviously, Stanford doesn’t pay me to say great things about the place, but raising my two boys here—a three-year-old and a one-year-old—is amazing. I don’t know many other campuses where so many of the students live on campus. The housing is heavily subsidized, there are pre-schools—it’s a really great place to have a family. I definitely can’t live off campus, because rent in Palo Alto is ridiculous.
The other day, someone senior from McKinsey gave a talk here. He spoke about the fact that in today’s world, you need to be able to understand both the public and private sectors. It makes you a much better leader, especially further down the road when there’s more of a nexus. That’s the point of the JD/MBA: It’s for folks who want to understand business and government equally, who want to have the ability to go left and right, back and forth.
A lot of people rationalize and say that whatever they’re doing now is really great, but I truly feel like the JD/MBA has given me a lot of opportunities. Whether it’s law, business, nonprofits, or government, I’ve been able to spend time looking at different places, interviewing at different places, and even interning at different places. I’ve learned, I’ve become smarter, and the four years have really let me explore every different job that’s out there.
DON’T MISS: My Story: From Trinity University To Starting A Firm or Was My JD Worth It? How Did I Even Get Here? 

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