Career & Leadership Development


Sewanee has a proven record of educating men and women who have gone on to successful legal careers in the private practice of law, the corporate world, government and the armed forces, non-profits and as professors at law schools. To cite a few examples from a large number, Sam Elliott '78 recently served as President of the Tennessee State Bar, and Angus Macaulay '86 has completed a term as President of the South Carolina State Bar. Robin Rotman '04, Rhodes Scholar and a graduate of Yale Law School, has joined Van Ness Feldman, where she works in environmental and energy law. At a different stage of their careers, David Barnes '05 graduated first in his class at Vanderbilt Law School May of 2011, while during the same month Ryan Barry '08 graduated first in his class at the University of Tennessee School of Law. This year Matthew Lafferman '10 graduated magna cum laude at the George Mason School of Law after serving on their law review. Martha Ferson '11 will enter Yale Law School this fall.

Such outcomes are the result of many things, but at Sewanee it is clear that bright, engaged undergraduates greatly benefit from a rigorous liberal arts curriculum taught by faculty members committed to the life of the mind and to mentoring as well as challenging their students. As Brannon Denning ’92 who is now Professor of Law at the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University put it, “With Sewanee’s emphasis on critical thinking, as well as effective oral and written communication, students—whatever their major—find themselves well-prepared for the rigors of law school.  Moreover, the close student-faculty ties encouraged at Sewanee mean that students are eager to establish similar relationships with law school faculty.  Those interactions are not only helpful to a student’s education, but can be very important professionally as well.”