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Hildy Aguinaldo says that the beauty of law school is that it gives you options. As president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA), member of the Moot Court Honors Program, and editor of the student newspaper, The Commentator, the second-year student approaches each day with ingenuity.
Even though she loved her undergraduate experience at UCLA, Aguinaldo said that Southwestern presents students with the chance to be creative and shine in their own ways. "If you go to a Harvard or Stanford you're made to fit into their mold," she said. "At Southwestern, you can make your own mold, do your own stuff. There's so much you can do here."
She works with APALSA's seven board members and has cultivated a multi-pronged venture that includes social, professional, and academic development as well as community involvement. The organization held an outline and exam writing workshop, open to anyone interested, in which top scoring students from the previous year came and talked about how they prepared for the tests so successfully.
Aguinaldo also enjoys mentoring students and credits her own family with giving her terrific support. "My little sister is my mentor. And so is my boyfriend… I make him listen to all of my moot court arguments."
During her last year at UCLA, her father had some health problems, which Aguinaldo says were caused by tobacco. That influenced her to make the decision to go to law school. Her first thought was to explore health care law, but she admits that there are so many things that interest her, she’s not sure what area she wants to hone in on just yet.
And as if she isn't busy enough, Aguinaldo has also been a paid intern with the Airport Division of the City Attorney's Office since last May- writing up complaints and memos and doing research on ordinances.
"I'm sane because I enjoy every single one of the things I'm doing, which are all intense but flexible," she said.