Sarah Long

Sarah Long's portrait.

Degree: Juris Doctor

Hometown: Waquoit, MA

"I have realized how much I love learning, how much I love learning the law."
How does your law degree fit into your life's plan?

I believe the best plans are those created knowing that they must change and evolve over time. When I entered into university as an undergraduate in 1978 (yes, you read that correctly), I wanted to be a veterinarian. After taking biochem and physics, I found a passion in physics, particularly electricity and magnetism. I changed majors and graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering in 1983.

After nearly thirty successful years using the skills and knowledge I gained at university, I reached a point in life where it was time to give back. My spouse set the stage for me by leaving the corporate world after twenty years in two successful careers to go back to school to get her Master's in Divinity. She is now the minister at the Waquoit Congregational Church. Her courage to change direction, choosing one that was only to help others, inspired me.

When we moved to the Cape from the Boston area, I decided to follow my dream as well—I applied to Law School. Like my spouse, my goal is to do something that keeps us engaged, working and challenged, and to do so in a way that gives back to the community. We have both been fortunate in our lives and blessed in many ways. This revised plan is all part of our being open to adjusting our life plans as we grow.

What has been your greatest challenge?

My greatest challenge, and greatest joy, has been moving from the corporate world back to being a student. I chose to quit my job and focus full time on my studies. I personally could not do it any other way. (Having said that, it's important for me to also say that I have incredible respect for those who must and do keep working while they get their degrees part-time.)

For me, the challenge was to become a student again and study something that is so very different from what I studied before (electrical engineering). The joy associated with that is that I have realized how much I love learning, how much I love learning the law, and how wonderful it is to focus on my school work without the interruptions, travel, and limited new challenges of my 'old life.'

What are your plans for after graduation?

I am honored to be a Public Interest Scholar and, as such, my plan after graduation is to pass the bar and practice on Cape Cod in the public interest sector. Which part of that sector remains to be seen, of course. I am exploring the Cape and Islands District Attorney's office as well as not-for-profit organizations that support the underserved communities of the Cape and Islands.





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