A 2015 KU Law graduate and former criminal prosecutor has joined KU Law’s Office of Admissions as the director of recruiting. Bryanna Hanschu started her new role in August and hit the road right away to meet future Jayhawk lawyers.
After graduating from KU Law in 2015, Hanschu practiced family law and did municipal prosecution at Payne and Jones law firm in Overland Park. She then did felony criminal prosecution at both the Wyandotte County District Attorney’s Office and the Leavenworth County Attorney’s Office. In Leavenworth, she handled the domestic violence cases for the county.
Hanschu recently carved out time between trips across the country to various law school recruiting events to chat about why she’s excited to join the Office of Admissions at KU Law.
Q: Do you go by Bri or Bryanna?
A: My parents blessed me with a really difficult to say and spell first and last name. When I was 14, I was a piano teacher. “Bryanna” was kind of hard for a child to say, so I started going by both Bri with an “I” and Bryanna with a “Y.”
Q: Why did you decide to go to law school at KU Law?
A: I really loved the community here. I was one of those students that actually had a lot of contact with the Admissions Office because I was really interested. I did multiple visits, every open house and every event that they had available. I loved the area, and I loved the people. Lawrence also is a gorgeous place to live, so I was sold pretty quickly.
Q: Which class at KU Law was your favorite?
A: Looking back on law school, I think one of the classes that really changed who I was as a lawyer and really helped me was jurisdiction with Lumen Mulligan. The way that he taught the course is really what solidified more confidence in me and gave me the ability to apply for the bigger county prosecution jobs. That was probably the first class where I got actual constructive criticism that I could draw upon later in life when it came to writing and arguing. It helped me grow as a person and as a lawyer.
Q: What is your role at KU Law, and what do you do in that role?
A: I am the director of recruiting at KU Law. During the fall season, I travel and am rarely home. I go to various different universities and talk to students about going to law school. Going to these different schools alleviates the need for the students to have to travel to each school they’re interested in before they’re admitted. In the winter and spring, I will be reviewing applications and doing the admissions process with the students.
Q: Why do you enjoy recruiting future Jayhawks?
A: Every time I talk to somebody, I always think, “This could be the next great lawyer who changes the world.” That’s what I enjoy. KU Law offers an amazing education to its students. It’s what got me to where I was when I was prosecuting.
Q: How many U.S. states have you been to for leisure? For work?
A: In total, I’ve been to 21 states. Four of those states have been added in the past few months through my work travel. Since I started in my new role in August, I’ve recruited students in the states of Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Wisconsin, Indiana, Iowa, New York, Minnesota, Utah, Arizona and Washington, D.C. I enjoy the traveling. It’s really fun to get out and experience new places while I’m there.
This job goes hand-in-hand with climate adjusting. I think the most interesting periods were when I was going from a cold climate to a hot climate with only one suitcase.
Q: What is the last movie that you saw?
A: I watch a lot of movies on planes. The last movie that I saw was “Avengers: Infinity War.” I watched it while I was on my way home from Washington, D.C.
Q: Do you have any interesting hobbies?
A: I really enjoy splatter-painting. It’s cathartic. I love throwing paint on a canvas. There is one in my office that I’ve painted over if anyone ever wants to see it.
I have also decided that I’ve been sedentary for too long. I am going to sign up for a half marathon next year.
Other than that, I just try to explore when and where I can. I love trying to find new places with gorgeous scenery, so I try to do that as much as possible. I also am trying to learn more about plants, I love spending time at a garden nursery with a coffee on a Sunday. And bookstores always hold a soft spot in my heart. I buy too many books. I need a bigger bookshelf in my apartment.
— By Ashley Golledge