Tina Le ’19 is well-versed in exploring and dissecting narratives: as an English major, she is accustomed to unlocking the intricacies of a story and then spinning an argument out of these intricacies. As a case intake analyst with the Philadelphia-based class action law firm Berger Montague, she is continuing to use those skills—but instead of analyzing literature, she’s working with the stories that make up class action lawsuits.
“I am the first line of contact for clients interested in working with the firm, so my work involves interviewing clients, providing details about lawsuits, and answering questions and giving updates as the cases move along,” she said. “My work will be putting together what are essentially narratives that the attorneys can use for their case.”
Le’s studies in the English department are only one example of the way Haverford prepared her for this new position. As a Ford, she also occupied a series of positions within the community that helped her develop a holistic set of skills for working with people.
“The skill of putting together and analyzing stories was a big part of my English major, but there are a lot of soft skills that are important for the job, and so the skills that I developed as Customs Co-Head, a Peer Awareness Facilitator, and Officer of Campus Life will be really useful,” said Le. “These roles on campus taught me how to communicate efficiently and effectively while still maintaining a sense of empathy and patience for the other person or party.”
Because of Le’s role interviewing clients, people skills are essential. Her job’s other responsibilities include researching legal theory and the nuances of potential cases. She enjoys this part of the job as much as she does interviewing people; in fact, she was first drawn to law by the opportunities it provides to conduct research with meaningful applications. She was introduced to this work through an externship with a Haverford alumni during the winter of her sophomore year.
“My externship with Mark Scherzer ’73—a personal injury and long-term disability lawyer in New York City—piqued my interest in law,” she said. “The work that I witnessed and helped with during the externship showed me a possible career path that would allow me to nerd out on random fields of knowledge in a social justice-oriented way.”
Le’s current position offers her the chance to conduct this type of research while also learning what the day-to-day life of a lawyer is like. By working for Berger Montague, she is getting a feel for what her future might hold—and so far, she’s loving it.
“I am looking forward to learning more about the legal field during my time here, whether that means just seeing what kind of work a lawyer does or learning more about legal theory and jargon,” she said. “When I was graduating Haverford, I was hoping to eventually go on to law school, and so far, my time at the firm has only confirmed this aspiration.”
“Where They’re Headed” is a blog series reporting on the post-collegiate plans of recent Haverford graduates.