Featured Student Leader: Natasha Martinez

Natasha Martinez is a 2L at Mizzou Law who serves as the American Constitution Society President, a representative on the Graduate Professional Council, Journal of Dispute Resolution member, and is the newly elected Vice-President of Mizzou Law SBA. Martinez grew up in Excelsior Springs, Missouri and studied political science, poverty studies and leadership at Washburn University before joining us at the law school. Now as a law student, she has set her sights on a career in public interest specifically doing impact litigation.

“This summer, I am working for the ACLU-Voting Rights Project in New York City,” Martinez said. “Last summer, I worked for the ACLU-MO and had a wonderful experience learning from intelligent and hardworking individuals. This summer, I am excited to intern with the Voting Rights Project because the team has been a force across the nation for voting rights.”

As a student, she has enjoyed the various experiences offered to Mizzou Law students. The opportunities available through involvement in student-led experiences are what she says have made her time at Mizzou Law most memorable.

“My favorite part of my Mizzou Law experience so far was when we had the Mexican consulate at Mizzou Law,” Martinez said. “One of my friends worked hard to plan the event and the event was so interesting. It was also the same semester I was taking Immigration Law (one of my favorite classes thus far) so it was even more impactful to hear. It was so intriguing to have Foreign Government officials at Mizzou Law to learn from.”

It’s no secret that law school is tough, but Martinez says that having a network of mentors and taking part in stress-relieving activities like Zumba classes with friends make managing the stress much easier.

“As a First-Generation law student, mentors have helped me throughout many processes,” she said. “I love to go to lunch or coffee and learn from others. Without mentors encouraging and supporting me, I would not be where I am today.”

Recently, Martinez was selected as an American Constitution Society (ACS) Next Generation Leader. ACS recognizes a small group each year who have demonstrated strong leadership qualities and a commitment to engaging with the organization.

“The ACS Next Generation Program is a great way for me to continue my involvement and love for progressive issues through a strong network,” Martinez said. “I look forward to learning and growing through the program from all of the other amazing individuals selected. I am proud to be selected as a leader for an organization that is committed to promoting and strengthening the principles of individual rights and liberties, equality, and access to justice. I look forward to continuing discussions on access to justice through my ACS engagement both in law school and beyond. Being selected is a great honor and I greatly appreciate all of my law school professors and mentors who have helped support me to reach my goals.”

Martinez said that she chose Mizzou Law because of the welcoming and positive atmosphere she recognized while visiting. She imparts the same wisdom she followed while selecting a school to those who are considering Mizzou Law now.

“Choose the school that makes you feel comfortable and proud to be a part of,” she said “Go with the school your gut is telling you is the right one and once you do, don’t look back. Get excited and involved. Be ready for the next few years to be busy, but don’t be afraid to stay true to the things that are important to you.”