She was a cum laude graduate at Pulaski Academy, a member of the National Honor Society, a graduate of Columbia University, and had an offer to enter an Ivy League law school – a ticket to a silk-stocking Manhattan practice. But Crissy Monterrey wanted to come home.
“I am so glad that I did,” said Monterrey, a 2006 honors graduate of the UALR William H. Bowen School of Law. “The Bowen School, in my opinion, offers a practical legal experience and a legal education that many law schools do not offer. For a young attorney, that is priceless.”
Another benefit from her decision? She met her husband at the law school. They now are partners in a successful law firm in Little Rock.
“Little Rock is a great place to start your career as a young professional, compared to Manhattan or Miami,” she said. “If you really want to affect change or really jump start your career, Little Rock is a great place to start as a young professional.”
The key to her success as a young professional was the legal education she received at the school, Monterrey said.
“All the professors put a practical spin on everything,” she said. “You had to really grapple with situations – how would you handle this, how would you represent this client, what would you file, what strategy would you use.”
She appreciated the diversity at the school that greatly improves the classroom dynamic and the collegial alumni network that bolsters the business community.
“We work with UALR alums on a daily basis – clients, prosecutors we went to law school with,” Monterrey said. “There is a personal relationship with folks who are adversarial or on the same side that makes a difference. You are not just walking into a room and meeting a stranger.”