Class of 2019
Hometown: Elk Grove, CA
Major: Political Science and Global Studies
Studying at McGeorge is a homecoming of sorts for Elk Grove native Shelby Lundahl. She attended the University of California, Los Angeles, where she majored in political science and global studies. While pursuing her undergraduate degree, Lundahl studied for a summer at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. and abroad in Paris. After graduating, she moved to San Francisco to pursue a job opportunity in sales at Yelp.
"Living abroad and in some of the most famous cities in the world was truly an eye opening experience and made me realize how important it is to travel and see the world, but most importantly how important it is to come home," Shelby said. "It made me realize how excited I am to learn about my home through the lens of the law."
Shelby has always moved at a fast pace. She's completed one full marathon and a smattering of half-marathons. "Nowadays running helps me stay calm and deal with the everyday stresses of law school."
One of her most life-defining moments was meeting Supreme Court Justice Antonin Gregory Scalia while studying at Georgetown. "His brilliance, presence and character were overwhelming and intimidating. He spoke about his upbringing and talked about how his parents worked hard to ensure that he and his siblings had every opportunity to succeed in life."
Scalia's message resonated with Shelby whose mother is an immigrant from the Philippines. Shelby's parents have always worked hard for their children's success. "After hearing Justice Scalia speak, I felt empowered to become something great in this world."
After being burnt by one too many cold calls at Yelp, she decided to take a chance on law school and create more meaning in her life. "I had just put down the phone after my 80th call and probably got hung up on or yelled at. I sat there dreading having to pick up the phone and make another call when I realized that I was miserable because I was not using my brain, creativity or challenging myself in my profession. I made a decision to quit my job and study for the LSAT in search of a better job to add more challenges, more excitement and more diversity to my days." Shelby opted to pursue a law degree at McGeorge because of its proximity to her roots and its intimacy.
She was also attracted to McGeorge because of the amazing stories that she had heard about the school's faculty and the unique relationship that the institution nurtures between professors and students. "In just one semester, I have gotten to know my professors better than I knew any of my professors in undergrad who I may have had multiple times. All of the students come from such different backgrounds so everyone has a unique and fresh perspective to bring. Everyone always talked about the 'McGeorge family,' but I didn't realize until I started school how true that statement is."
Shelby hopes to work at a private business law firm and is also eager to explore general counsel positions. "My parents own a small business so I have a passion for helping small business owners succeed and helping them navigate the challenging and confusing areas of law.