Five, six, seven, eight! I take a deep breath and the music comes on. In an instant I am at peace and time seems to stop. Having danced my entire life, I lived for the moments I performed on stage. It was a way to not only lose myself but find myself at the same time. With dance came discipline, focus, and determination to succeed.
Born and raised in Miami, after graduating high school I stayed home and attended Florida International University and pursued a career in broadcasting. I was fortunate to have danced for the Miami Heat throughout this time as well. I did not get the college experience of joining a sorority and attending football games on Saturday with my friends. Going from class to practice and internships in between I was always on a strict schedule, penciling in my entire day into my agenda.
Broadcasting was my dream, the next Erin Andrews I thought. I interned for NBC 6 Sports as well for Power 96, a local radio station in Miami. Junior year, I took a media in the law class and just like the feeling I got on stage, time stopped. I took a step back and realized I had a passion other than dance and broadcasting. Senior year, unbeknownst to my professors, I decided to apply to law school and close the curtain to my career as a journalist.
When I tell you law school was not the plan I was not an exaggerating. I was not raised by a family of attorneys; my father and I were the first in our family to graduate from college, with me being the first in my family to become an attorney. In 2010, I was accepted to Florida Coastal School of Law and left everything I knew in Miami and took the stage as a 1L.
Law school was not easy by any means and there were many times I wanted to quit, but I always remembered how I felt when I could not get the right steps to my routine and how if I kept at it, I would be ok.
In my 1L year, I fell in love with Family Law then became a Child Advocate with the Guardian ad Litem program. My 2L year, I became very involved with on campus activities and joined Law Student Against Violence (LSAV) as well as the student newspaper, the Rainmaker. My free time did not go to hanging out with friends nor were my spring breaks spent vacationing somewhere. I took advantage of my time and volunteered and stayed busy any way I could.
Somehow being busy was second nature and all I knew. 3L year came and not only was I the President of LSAV, a student ambassador, but I was a Certified Legal Intern in the Family Law Clinic here on campus. It was then I realized that with my degree I could make a difference.
I graduated from Coastal Law with honors in pro bono as well as with a Family Law Certificate. Thinking I would be just another family law attorney, life yet again threw me a curveball and upon graduation I was lucky enough to work for both the Admissions Office at Coastal Law and clerk for my previous professor in the family law clinic as a law clerk.
I found a way to infuse working with students as well as my career in family law. I have since then received my certification in family law mediation by the Florida Supreme Court. Life does not always go as planned but life is a dance from one stage to the next and currently I’m center stage with the admissions team at Coastal Law.