Notre Dame, IN

Dear Notre Dame Law School Community,

As is tradition, your Student Bar Association planned a final School-wide meeting to celebrate all of you and your accomplishments. I am sorry that we do not have the opportunity to celebrate the end of the school year together. As I will not have the opportunity to say a final goodbye as your SBA president in person, I am writing this note to you all.

To the Class of 2022, congratulations on making it through what has undoubtedly been a stressful and unique first-year experience. Now that you have the lay of the land, you can make the most of your law school careers. Do not be afraid to run for that student leadership position or take a class that is outside your comfort zone. You will never know what connections you may make or calling you might find if you don’t take the chance.

To the Class of 2021, you have climbed the ladder and made it to your final year of law school; we cannot wait to see how you lead this great institution and what marks you leave as a class. I wish the best to the rising leaders of SBA: Keith Ongeri, Nicole Barba, Krystal Moczygemba, and Stephanie Wong. I have all the confidence in them to lead NDLS forward following this time of great uncertainty. In the rest of your time here at NDLS, always remember to see Heidi for a pep talk with a snack, find Dean O'Rear for an interesting story, and visit Christine to solve all of your problems.

To the Class of 2020, we did it—we made it through all of the cold-calls, exams, papers, and unrelenting winters. As we leave this institution and enter a legal field marked with uncertainty, find reassurance in the fact that those unique graduating classes of the First World War, the Spanish Flu, the Second World War, and the Great Recession were all tested in various ways and proved their resiliency in the face of everything. We, too, will come to be known as a class of strong, patient, and resilient graduates, I am sure of it. We will gather to celebrate even louder and grander when we are reunited next year for Commencement.

To the faculty and staff, thank you. Thank you for your patience, your instruction, and your friendship. It takes a special group of caring individuals to educate and form a different kind of lawyer, and we are certainly not of short supply. From our administrative assistants, to CDO and Student Services, to our faculty, I am not alone in saying that it has been a privilege to get to know you all and call you not just acquaintances, but friends, mentors, and colleagues.

After three years here, I have come to realize that Notre Dame is not a place you go to, it’s a place you come from. On behalf of SBA Vice-President Ian Michalak, Secretary Margaret Manning, and Treasurer Natalie Piazza, thank you. It has been our privilege to serve you, we are proud of the work we were able to accomplish this past year, and we look forward to what the next SBA Administration will achieve.

Yours in Notre Dame,

Devan Patel