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April 28, 2021 at 11:42 am

Class of 2021 | David Giddens Cites Legal Affairs Internship, Co-Curricular Organizations

David Giddens, portrait

David Giddens (Photo with permission from Dy’Sha Cole)

David Giddens has spent four years at Ohio University embracing new experiences, serving communities he values, and developing his familiarity with the law. As Giddens prepares to graduate this spring, he takes time to reflect on where his Political Science Pre-Law major and Certificate in Law, Justice & Culture have led him.

In 2017, Giddens came to visit Ohio University without any expectations. Without a clear idea of where he wanted to go to college, Giddens began looking for a place that could feel like home and nurture his career goals.

“Before coming to OHIO, I really did not have any idea of where I wanted to go for college. It was not until the second tour that I actually fell in love with the campus. With old brick buildings and amazing scenery, I felt like this could be a comfortable place for me to thrive in and gain the education that propels me to my next step in life.”

Ohio University would be the place Giddens could continue to develop his passion for law. Giddens has always known he wanted to be a lawyer and all he needed was the support of faculty, student community, and advisers to guide him.

“Since I was young, I always had an interest in helping people. As I grew older, I began to realize the injustices that continue to happen to marginalized groups in America and began to have a passion to help change that. That is when my passion for law came to be because what determines our everyday lives is the laws we follow. So, if I’m able to fight for these laws to be changed to benefit every American person to help create equality I couldn’t think of any job better to do that than becoming an attorney. I am very interested in going into public interest law or civil rights law.”

Shortly after arriving in Athens, Giddens began exploring student organizations, study abroad programs, and job opportunities. He soon became invested in the Undergraduate Black Law Student Association, Ohio Democrats, Mock Trial, Phi Alpha Delta, and the Black Student Union. In each of these organizations, Giddens grew as a future law student and activist.

Additionally, Giddens soon found himself working in Ohio University’s Legal Affairs office, where he began to see how a career in law could look. While he always knew he wanted to pursue law, his job allowed him to see how many directions law could take him.

“My favorite part about working for Ohio University’s Legal Affair office is being able to talk with practicing lawyers from all different fields of law every day. I’m able to talk to them and gain first knowledge about what being a lawyer is like on a daily basis. I am truly passionate about facilitating change within the American justice system in which all people of every color, gender, and class can be treated equally by the law and the people who enforce it.”

Giddens’ passion propelled him to become an even stronger speaker, student, and advocate. “My experience at OU allowed me to be able to step outside my comfort zone and learn that I can be successful in anything I want to achieve. I have always had a huge fear of speaking in front of people so me joining different organizations in which I was in a leadership role helped pushed me to overcome this fear and instead make it one of my strengths.”

His willingness to take on new experiences also brought him to his favorite undergraduate memory which was his role in the Law, Justice & Culture Northern Ireland study abroad program.

“My favorite Ohio University memory is for sure my freshman year spring break when I was able to be a part of the Northern Ireland study abroad trip. That trip to Northern Ireland really sparked my interest in traveling the world and expanding my mind past what I think I know.”

As Giddens reflects on his past four years at Ohio University, he is grateful for his faculty mentors. Now approaching law school, Giddens knows his support system will stay with him through his next chapter.

“One of the most important things I feel I did as an undergraduate to prepare for law school is making connections with the faculty here at OU. The connections that I have made with them have led to many great opportunities and insights that have prepared me for my time in law school.”

While Giddens is prepared to begin a new journey, he remains dedicated to uplifting his fellow pre-law student community. He reminds them to stay true to their passions and find connections with other advocates.

“The main advice that I have for any student interested in law is make sure you know why you are interested in it. The road to becoming a lawyer is not one of ease so making sure you are in it for the right reason is very crucial for anyone wanting to be in the law realm. Also do not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone when meeting new people. Making connections within the law field is an essential part of becoming a lawyer. You may never know who may help you on your journey to becoming a lawyer.”

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