Valeria Carbajal: Why I went to law school

Law students Valeria Carbajal, Blaine Smith and Zack Combs attend a basketball game at Allen Fieldhouse. Photo courtesy of Valeria Carbajal.

I’m in the last semester of my 3L year, and it just doesn’t feel real. I refuse to believe that it’s been almost three years since I sat at Green Hall watching one friend draw a cow on the board, another sit across from me wearing a lobster costume, and Professor Laura Hines drawing her famous rendition of the United States. When people used to ask me “why” I came to law school, I felt bad that my answer wasn’t the usual “I want to help people” response. Of course, that’s one aspect of anything I do, but it wasn’t necessarily why I came to law school. I came to law school simply because I wanted to continue my education.

Law students Valeria Carbajal and Ryan Gordon pose for a photo at a classmate’s wedding. Photo courtesy of Valeria Carbajal.

That being said, I had to figure out what my “why” was to be able to get through law school because “continuing my education” was not going to cut it. I slowly began to create amazing friendships while having my loved ones cheering for me from afar. As I look back on all of the support I have had these past few years, above all is God. He has blessed me beyond words with some of the most loving friendships I have ever had. He got me through the darkest times, those moments where I had no strength to do anything other than lay in bed and cry because sure, law school is hard, but life in general can be confusing and difficult and painful. 

Law students Valeria Carbajal and Marisol Garcia pose for a photo in a field of sunflowers. Photo courtesy of Valeria Carbajal.

So, my “why” is because of God’s amazing grace. Because He placed me here for my good and His glory. Because He didn’t place me in Lawrence, Kansas, just to go to law school. He orchestrated all of the wonderful people I encountered and all the relationships I built. He placed believers in my life to serve them and for them to show me how absolutely beautiful life can be when Christ is the center of their life. He entrusted me with the responsibility and ability to serve and show others who He is, through me­ – even if it was just a glimpse. God has used these past three years to strengthen my relationship with Him because He knew He was the only one that could get me through these three years, and frankly through the next three as well. If I ever forget “why,” I should continue to do the mundane, the difficult and the stressful everyday work… He’s “why.” Because through it all He continues to be kind and give me continual grace, and will present me with constant opportunities in life, and now in my career, to serve, love and share the Gospel with others.

A group of law students pose for a photo at the Kansas City Power & Light District. Photo courtesy of Valeria Carbajal.

All this to say “thank you,” to all of the friends I’ve met during my time here, and to the KU Law staff and administration. I’m so grateful you were part of God’s plan for me.

— By Valeria Carbajal, a 3L from El Paso, Texas and a KU Law Student Ambassador.