Manar Zayed

Manar Zayed

About Manar: I graduated high school when I was 16 and finished my associate’s degree when I was 18. I then spent a year in Palestine teaching English to students in kindergarten, 5th, 6th, and 7th grade. Afterwards, I came back home to pursue my bachelor’s degree. Teaching showed me how much I wanted to make a positive impact.

Previous Legal and/or Professional Experience: I’ve been a police dispatcher for several police departments for the past 5 years. Because of this experience, I’ve had the opportunity to see both sides of the issues, which encouraged me to pursue a legal career. During my second year of law school from August 2012 to December 2012, I interned at the DuPage County Public Defender’s Office.  During the summer of my second year of law school from May to August 2013, I interned for the Honorable Mark J. Lopez. Judge Lopez was in the domestic relations division at the Daley Center in Chicago.  During my third year of law school from August 2013 until April 2014, I have been interning at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office.  In January of 2014, I started an externship for Justice Thomas L. Kilbride of the Supreme Court of Illinois. I also work with the Illinois Supreme Court Access to Justice Committee.

What activities are you involved in?  I am involved in several student organizations. Since my first year of law school, I have been involved in the Student Bar Association (SBA).  The SBA sponsors activities such as guest speakers, a basketball league, picnics, parties, and other activities geared toward the professional, academic, and social interests of students. My first year I was chosen to be an SBA representative by my peers.  My second year I ran for and was elected to the position of Secretary of the SBA.  Prior to my third year, I won the election to be the SBA representative for the American Bar Association (ABA). 

Since my second year of law school I have also been involved in the Moot Court Society, and as a third year law student, I became an executive member of the Moot Court Society. I also am a mentor for the Women's Law Caucus. I mentor students who are in their first and second year of law school.

Why did you choose NIU Law? I chose NIU because I could get a high quality education at an affordable price. I get to know the professors very well, and I get to interact with them. I like that everyone is friendly, motivating, and encouraging. Around every corner I turn, I get advice. In law school, you can’t have negative people surrounding you, and I really like the positive support.

This interview was conducted in Fall 2011 and updated in Spring 2014.

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