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Megan Chan knew she wanted to be a litigator. Years of high school and college debate confirmed her decision to attend law school. Michigan Law stood out because of its unique blend of academic excellence and collegiality, and the Darrow Scholarship propelled Michigan to the top of her list.
Once Chan started at Michigan, she knew she made the right choice. She credits Dean of Admissions Sarah Zearfoss with "selecting individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences, which contribute to a well-rounded class." The varied perspectives brought by these students challenged Chan to think critically about issues from different angles. Michigan gave her the opportunity to utilize those skills in a practical manner through her participation in the Pediatric Advocacy Clinic, where she advocated for low-income families.
Thanks to her Darrow Scholarship's 1L summer stipend, Chan felt the financial freedom to accept a judicial externship with Justice Earl Johnson Jr. of the California Court of Appeal. Drafting opinions for Justice Johnson and her interactions with him gave Chan invaluable insight into judicial decision-making that she incorporates into her everyday practice.
What She's Doing Now
After earning her JD in 2009, Chan began working at Morrison & Foerster LLP's Los Angeles office. She was a member of the firm's Consumer Litigation and Class Action Practice Group, which included federal, state, and multidistrict litigation, with a focus on commercial and class-action matters. From 2013 to 2015, she served as a law clerk to the Hon. Audrey B. Collins of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. After her clerkship, she joined the University of Southern California in February 2015, where she is the assistant dean of financial aid–compliance and training.
The Benefits of a Darrow Scholarship
Chan often meets with new Darrow Scholarship recipients and encourages them to think about what they want to do with their degree after graduating from law school. "I urge them to really think about law school not as the end, but the beginning," she said. "It's easy to see all those offer letters and ignore the dollars, but after law school, you want to be able to do what you want with your career. If you're spending the next several years paying off debt, it's going to restrict your choices. There is a lot of freedom coming out of law school as a Darrow Scholar."
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