Alum Joins Dominican Political Science Law School Pipeline

Dominican University of California was one of several schools that recruited Joshua Rosenberg ’18 to play soccer. However, when making his final decision, it was academics that brought Josh to San Rafael from Oahu, Hawaii.

“I knew that my aspiration was to always become an attorney and that professional soccer was not the end goal,” he says. “I really looked into the academic reputations of each school that was recruiting me. Dominican really stood out. A number of people I talked with before committing to Dominican spoke highly of its academic stature.”

Josh recently graduated from the University of Washington School of Law and is studying to take the Washington State Bar Exam this summer. He’s accepted a post-graduate offer to join Karr Tuttle Campbell, a law firm in downtown Seattle.

 “Dominican really put me in a great position to succeed academically, which definitely translated in my law school applications,” Josh says. “The writing and reading comprehension skills that the Dominican Political Science department helped develop and enhance have really assisted my law school success as well.”

In recent years, students from Dominican’s tight-knit Political Science program have enrolled in law school either immediately after graduation or following several years in the workplace, including:'

  • Samantha Hunt ’18 (Vanderbilt University School of Law)
  • David Nguyen ’18 (William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawaii)
  • Aimee Carrazco ’16 (Golden Gate University School of Law)
  • Courtney Chew ’16 (UC Hastings College of the Law)
  • Melissa Graveson ’15 (Willamette University College of Law)
  • Carson Niello ’14 (UC Hastings College of the Law)
  • Janelle Harris-Hansen ’11 (University of San Francisco School of Law)
  • Alejandra Mendoza ’10 (John F. Kennedy School of Law)
  • Audrey Curtis ’09 (New York University School of Law)

Josh came to Dominican and the School of Liberal Arts and Education from Kamehameha Schools, Oahu, intending to study political science because of an early interest in politics – nurtured by his parents – and also because he realized it was a well-rounded major that would give him significant insight into a wide range of topics, including healthcare, foreign policy, gun control laws, immigration, and economics.

“I selected political science because I thought it would do a great job of preparing me for law school,” he recalls. “The professors in the political science department truly helped develop my writing skills, which became imperative to my law school success. I would recommend political science as a major or minor to anybody as it really helps you stay informed on current issues throughout the world.”

Josh, who also minored in history and pre-law, took advantage of Dominican’s extracurricular offerings outside the Athletics Department. He traveled to Linfield College in Oregon with Dr. Christian Dean and the Dominican Debate Team to participate in the Parliamentary Style Debate Tournament. He also represented Dominican at the National Democratic Institute's International Debate Best Practices Symposium in Washington, D.C.

As part of professor Alison Howard’s “Campaigns and Elections” class, Josh and his classmates participated in a national research project focused on voting differences across the country and the media’s use of exit polls. Using a specially designed iPad application, students administered exit polls outside Marin County precincts during the 2016 election. 
He also enjoyed Dr. Gigi Gokcek’s “Politics in Developing Countries” class.

 “This class was amazing because we got to select a country, identify a main issue hindering development, and create a solution,” Josh says.

His love of politics led Josh to his first job after Dominican, interning at U.S. Senator Brian Schatz's Honolulu Office for the summer before going straight to law school at the University of Washington School of Law.

However, working as a legal intern at E&M Mayock, a San Francisco-based immigration firm, during the school year helped to solidify Josh’s interest in becoming a lawyer.

“I've always wanted to become an attorney to help people just as my parents do and seeing how the attorneys at E&M Mayock were able to help their clients really confirmed my interest in pursuing law school.”

At Dominican, students are able to work with faculty who often become mentors. Alison Howard was Josh’s mentor – and one of the first people he contacted when admitted to law school.

“Alison was a fantastic mentor and really went above and beyond in terms of getting me prepared to reach my end-goal,” Josh says. “She pushed me to succeed academically and never let me take the easy way out. I distinctly remember needing to do well on a paper in order to get an A in her class. She allowed me to bring her as many drafts as I wanted and she would give me critiques on how to improve it. The care and patience that she has for her students made her a phenomenal mentor.”

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