August 30, 2022 by Clarissa Lester
Our team of lawyers have a very diverse background coming from all parts of the country with extensive knowledge helping people with their legal needs.
Associate Clarissa Lester didn’t take a traditional route in becoming a lawyer. As she was working towards getting a major in Political Science and a minor in Sociology, she got into law school but decided to travel abroad before attending. She went to Munich, Germany and attended Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich for a year. She returned to BC, enrolled at the University of Victoria for law school and received her Juris Doctor (JD) degree.
We find out a little bit more about Clarissa in this “Legal Bites” Q & A:
Tell us a little about your practice:
My practice consists of solicitor areas, such as corporate/commercial, real estate, and wills and estates. I also practice immigration and am excited to work in this area as immigration fits really well with my background in political science and international relations.
Why did you go to law school:
I went to law school because I love problem-solving and helping others.
How did you get to where you are today other than hard work? By design, by a little luck?
I would say it was a little luck. Things really fell into place for me over the years. I almost didn’t apply to law school, as I wasn’t confident I would get in. I actually applied on the last day you could submit your law school application and only applied to UVIC. I remember sitting in the library while I was going to UBCO finishing up my application in the evening so I wouldn’t miss the deadline. I think about where I would be today if I hadn’t taken that chance. It taught me that sometimes you just have to go for it!
What is your most significant achievement so far?
That’s a loaded question! I had my official call ceremony on August 24th, which signifies the end of my journey to officially becoming a lawyer, which is a huge accomplishment and one I’ve been dreaming of since I first thought about going to law school during my undergrad. I think non-academically, I’m proud of myself for taking the leap and moving to Munich, Germany for a year. I didn’t speak the language, had never lived on my own, and hadn’t even been to the country before! That year taught me a lot about myself, and I got to see a lot of Europe, which is something I really cherish.
What are some key challenges, and more importantly, opportunities for young people in law?
I was a COVID-19 law school graduate. It was a tough year to be entering the legal profession as students were having challenges getting articling positions and adjusting from being online, to being back in the office, or even staying remote. Some of the opportunities however, is that we are entering the legal profession with a different perspective on remote work and I’m excited to see how this influences the profession.
What advice would you give a young person entering law school now that you’ve been through it?
My main piece of advice would be to find a core group to help you through the process. Two of my best friends to this date are from law school, and we’ve been through it all together, 1L and that first “research memo,” PLTC, finishing articles, and we all have leaned on each other for support over the years. Once you are in law school, you start speaking a new lingo, and it’s so helpful to have people who understand you and know what you’re going through.