Spotlight on Social Sciences Alumni: Andrew Harris
UR Major: History
UR Minor: French
Additional Education: Notre Dame Law School (Class of 2015)
Current City, State of Residence: South Bend, Indiana
How did you choose your major?
I chose my major based on my passions and my career goals. As early as freshman year, I knew I wanted to go to law school. To that end, I sought to develop my writing skills. I selected my major in order to apply my interests with a practical end in mind.
What activities were you involved in as a student and what did you gain from them?
My primary involvement at UR was in the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity. While Greek life isn’t for everyone, my experiences with it helped me develop my professional persona and develop crucial networking skills.
What are some specific skills students should develop during an internship?
The most important skills to develop are time management, the ability to cultivate productive working relationships, and the ability to write with clarity and concision. No matter your intended field, these skills will be highly valued. Technical expertise is essential, but an inability to represent that expertise is a significant hindrance.
What is your opinion regarding graduate school vs. working right after graduation?
Whether your work right after graduation or go to graduate school, it is essential to make sure that you’re doing it for the right reasons. Some see graduate school as a convenient way to avoid the “real world” (for a few years, at least). Such a mindset is not a recipe for success. Excellence—in graduate school or in the workforce—is predicated on a sincere dedication to your work.
Where would you like to be in five years?
In five years, I intend to be at a corporate law firm in Chicago. Success in law is based on performance during key internships, which are acquired by excelling in class. The only way to do that, of course, is applying what I’ve learned over the course semester as well as the skills I fostered during my time as an undergraduate. Thanks to those skills, I’ve every confidence that I will be able to fulfill my dream of practicing mergers and acquisitions in a major firm.