A Conversation with Robin Hopkins JD'24
Robin Hopkins JD’24 was interested in attending Willamette, in part, thanks to a course for prospective students led by Professor Karen Sandrik, Associate Dean for Faculty and Professor of Law.
The topic was contracts, something Robin admitted hadn’t immediately appealed to him. Professor Sandrik “was going through a contract, redlining it, talking about the language within it, talking about the ambiguities of it,” he said.
Thanks to Professor Sandrik’s ability to make the content accessible, Robin said he found the subject compelling. “I realized Professor Sandrick was someone I wanted to know, wanted to be in a room with and have the opportunity to learn from,” he said.
After applying to and eventually receiving acceptance to several law schools, he was still uncertain about actually attending. That all changed, however, when he heard from Willamette. “I remember opening my email from Willamette, seeing my scholarship award and thinking ‘oh, this is going to happen — I’m going to law school!’” Robin says.
Soon after becoming a student, Robin began pursuing relevant work he’s passionate about public interest law. In his first year, he worked with the ACLU as a volunteer intake investigator. He then externed with a Bend-based watchdog group focused on land use, while also serving as a legal fellow through Oregon Sea Grant. He writes for Willamette Law Online and serves as Secretary for Willamette University Public Interest Law Project.
One of the most meaningful ways Robin said his life has changed since going to law school is access. “People recognize your commitment. People hear you out and want to help you way more than when I was not in law school,” he said. “The amount of doors that open to you as a law student is one of the things that’s surprising. I kind of felt on the outside of many things I had wanted to be in on for many years,” Robin said.
Robin said he wants you to know that law school would not have become his reality without your financial support. And because of you, he’s able to pursue public interest legal work without the fear of graduating with mountains of student loans.
Thank you for giving Robin this life-changing gift.
Read more stories about how Willamette's exceptional MBA students, faculty and alumni are turning knowledge into action on our news page.