Justice Hubbard (Class of 2020)

photo of Justice Hubbard

  • senior pre-law student with a Political Science and Economics double major
  • from Solon, OH
  • Law and Public Policy Scholar and 2019-2020 Sidley Prelaw Scholar
  • member of Miami's Government Relations Network
  • resident assistant (RA) of Hillcrest Hall; founder of the Miami University Archery Club
"When it comes to both of my majors, they have really taught me perseverance. For me, economics has been definitely harder than political science, so I've learned how to ask for help. Even if I don't understand something, I know I should not abandon it because it is difficult."

Why Miami?

Justice Hubbard with Miami University President Greg Crawford

"One of the prime reasons why I chose Miami was for its differing and vast amount of opportunities it offers their students. Miami, fortunately, provides access to numerous opportunities, such as the Law and Public Policy Scholars, along with the opportunity to build relationships with professors and other faculty. One of my current mentors is an alumnus from the Law and Public Policy Scholars. This connection gives me access to various classes, networking, and internship possibilities.

"Ever since I was a little kid, I always wanted to pursue the study of law. At first, I was thinking of being president of the United States — at that time, Barack Obama had not achieved such a milestone, so I thought I could be the first African American president. Of course, he then came along and changed the history books!

"My grandparents loved watching TV judge shows, and that is what drew my attention to the judicial side of government, specifically being a judge. As I grew up, that interest evolved into a passion for civil rights and constitutional law. When I came to Miami in 2016, I already knew that's where I wanted to end up.

"A lot of the talk going on at the time was all about politics, specifically economics, so I didn't want to just talk the talk, but walk the walk as well. I knew the best way to do that was to learn it and understand how economies and politics work together, so that's how I came to choose my double major in political science and economics."

Best Miami Experiences

"My experiences at Miami go back to networking in the community and being able to learn as you go. Maria Vitullo, director of the Sue J. Henry Center for Pre-law Education, put me in contact with the law firm Sidley Austin LLP, and becoming a Sidley Prelaw Scholar has given me the great opportunity to go to law school by paying for my LSAT and assisting with scholarships for law school.

"I am currently enrolled in Maria's pre-law class right now, which has helped me build the perfect resume and personal statement and place me in contact with different law school recruiters that have come to Miami's campus. This has helped me learn what it's like at law school and what they're looking for, so I'm able to build the best version of myself. I also used to work for the Pre-law Center as an administrative aide, and with Maria's help I was referred to Sue Henry '73, who has been another great resource. [See the October 2017 CAS press release Miami's Pre-Law Program renamed after prestigious alumna; naming ceremony Oct 4.]

"Randi Thomas, Miami's director of the Office of Institutional Relations, has also been a very key mentor to me since I arrived on campus. As a member of the Government Relations Network (GRN), I have had connections with alumni and the Office of the President. Randi and the GRN have helped me connect with so many different people on and off Miami's campus. Working in the GRN has also helped me understand the importance of presenting yourself: how to go into a room where no one knows you and be memorable. As a result of Randi's influence, I've been able to not only earn internships but also I am more confident and believe in myself. I can say, 'I've done this before, and I know how to do it.'"

Miami and the Liberal Arts

"A major advantage of a liberal arts degree is that you get a wider breadth of options and exposure. Even though I knew I wanted to go to law school, the liberal arts give you the opportunity to explore different things to become more compatible. Rather than being hedged into one aspect, you learn a foreign language, you learn math, you learn how to write and argue effectively. All of these different things have been proven to be extremely helpful.

"When it comes to both of my majors, they have really taught me perseverance. For me, economics has been definitely harder than political science, so I've learned how to ask for help. Even if I don't understand something, I know I should not abandon it because it is difficult. It was during my first year at Miami when I was still a bit hesitant to ask for help. I was like, 'Oh, I don't want to go to office hours,' or 'I don't want a tutor.' Going into the economics, however, and even some of my political science classes, I realized I can't do this on my own. Being more open to different ideas is the biggest thing I've learned."

Organizing and Participating in Community Leadership Experiences

Justice Hubbard with a potential recruit for the Miami University Archery Club during Mega Fair

"I started the Miami University Archery Club on campus from the ground up, which was a rewarding experience. I learned how to financially fund the club and how to ask for resources from outside the community. I also learned how to organize and build leadership in my team. That has been one of the biggest learning experiences I've had at Miami, and it's given me opportunities to grow that in other ways of team building and leadership styles.

"In addition to organizing, one of the biggest lessons I learned from Archery Club was about the community. Community service and networking is part of the reason why I came to Miami; building and fostering a new community is what I've always wanted. It's also why I became a resident assistant (RA)!

"Another impactful experience was Alternative Spring Break, run by GRN. Every spring break GRN takes around 70 students to Washington, DC and Columbus to meet with state senators and representatives and members of Congress. You are able to converse with them about your academic experiences and can advocate for Miami and higher education in general. This was the perfect opportunity for me, making use of everything that Maria and Randi have taught me about presenting myself and preparing for law school. Alternative Spring Break is the culmination of everything, where you get to go into a meeting with a senator and say, 'This is why I love Miami, and this is why I hope we can have your continued support.'"

Advice to Students

"If you're thinking of going into law, definitely keep a close relationship with the Pre-law Center. Maria got me in contact with the Sidley Austin law firm, and they've helped me in so many different ways. Working in the Pre-law Center gave me up-close and personal experience with various law school recruiters, alumni, and the advisors themselves.

"In general, I always tell people to try new things. Do things that are different and out of your comfort zone. For example, one of my professors for my capstone is offering the chance to join a regional competition for Moot Court. I've never done Moot Court before, but I thought, 'I want to go to law school, so why not?' Do things you would never expect yourself to do — don't be afraid to try!"

[October 2019]