Danielle Bates ’12 is spending her summer working with the environmental firm Barg Coffin Lewis & Trapp, LLP (BCLT). The San Francisco-based law firm provides expertise in environmental law and litigation across the country.
“The firm’s goal is to come up with innovative and constructive solutions for problems,” says Bates. “As a case clerk, I create, maintain and update case files, update and edit databases containing the master file index, research and obtain documents from court agencies, and assist with discovery documents.”
While working at BCLT, Bates relies on skills that she learned during her time at HWS, as well as her enthusiasm for working with legal cases.
“The professor that had the most impact on my career choice was Professor Brophy,” says Bates. “Professor Brophy’s class Crime and Punishment, which I took my sophomore year, helped me to determine that I wanted to minor in law and society. Although it was a philosophy course, it sparked my interest in law and the legal aspects of a case. “
Bates earned her B.A. in history, with a concentration in European studies. During her time at HWS, she was the secretary of Habitat for Humanity, as well as one of its co-presidents and one of the creators of the Mr. Hobart competition. During her junior and senior years, Bates was part of the Koshare production. She studied abroad in Rome where she had, as she puts it, an “amazing and transformative experience” that led her to realize, “I want to find a job that will combine my skills in art history and law.”
Also in her senior year, Bates was part of the history department’s new faculty search committee. “As the William Smith representative, I attended each of the candidates’ lectures and took them out to a student candidate breakfast,” she explains. “My input and opinion was respected and heard by the entire history department when making the final decision, which represents the school’s interest in the students’ perspective.”
She was also part of the William Smith Judicial Board where she and fellow students heard cases and determined the sanctions that students would receive for their disciplinary issues on campus.
“My time at HWS has prepared me to be a more creative thinker, hard worker and more resourceful,” she says.