Profiles: Leo Cristobal

Leo Cristobal

Leo Cristobal

JD 16

Associate at Andersen Tax

Tell me something special or interesting about your law school experience?

One of the accomplishments I am most proud of is continuing the Connect program at GGU. Connect is a three day pre-orientation program that assists incoming 1Ls from diverse backgrounds acclimate to law school life. Connect prepares students by telling them what to expect in law school and provides access to resources and tools to help them succeed. Participants attend a mock class taught by a GGU law professor and receive assistance from upper-year students that acquaints them with case briefing, note taking, speaking in class, and the IRAC method of legal writing. The goal is to share information to help maximize a student's potential. I participated in Connect before starting my 1L year at GGU, and it really helped me understand what to expect from law school. I met great friends and found great mentors. After another successful year, I am now helping the new Connect board prepare for the fourth annual Connect Program in 2015!

What message or advice do you have for your fellow law students?

At some point during everyone's law school career, we each encounter a big challenge, be it personal, professional, or something else. When this happens it is important to go to the people you trust and talk about the difficulties you are facing. So much about succeeding in law school revolves around being physically and mentally healthy and having confidence in one's abilities. If we are too proud, scared or ashamed to share our feelings, this limits our potential. For example, this past semester I reached a very low point. I was able to overcome it and grow as a person because I shared what I was going through with my close friends, and they helped me to get through it. If I had been too proud to do that, I'm not so sure I would have made it out of 2L year.

Who is your greatest source of support as you work towards your JD?

Definitely my girlfriend. We met when we were in college together at UC Davis (volunteering at the same program that inspired Connect!). Throughout the whole law school process she has been patient and understanding -- she is definitely my greatest source of support and motivation. She always knows what to say to remind me why I am in law school and gives me the encouragement I need to get through the difficult times. She has made this entire experience painless and I am so grateful to have her in my life.

What is your favorite thing you do when you are not at law school?

I really enjoy spending time with my friends from high school and UC Davis. We go on camping trips, visit Los Angeles, and watch basketball games (go Warriors!) Being around them reminds me of where I came from and provides a refreshing escape from the stress of law school.

About the interviewer

Andrea Loh is the Director of Employer Outreach in Law Career Services. Andrea recently moved to San Francisco from the East Coast and has yet to start missing the cold weather. She enjoys hiking, long distance biking, and baking breads, cakes, and all other types of desserts.