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Student Achievements: Azadeh Manoussi to Attend USC

ALU Alumnus Azadeh Manoussi

We know we have incredible, talented students. But it’s nice when the rest of the world acknowledges this as well. We are proud to announce current ALU law student, Azadeh Manoussi has been accepted into USC’s Masters of Law program. We asked her a few questions about her journey below.

What was your experience like at ALU with your professors and your cohort?

My professors were very approachable, caring and knowledgeable. I had professors call or text me to ensure that I was understanding the doctrines discussed in class and that I was following the course smoothly. If I was having trouble in the class, they would make themselves available to discuss and explain the topics. I have never left a message for any of the professors or the faculty that has not been returned in a timely manner. I truly never felt like I was doing this alone.

Can you talk about what you enjoyed about the classes and the online format through which they’re delivered?

The online format allowed me the flexibility to attend classes at my own pace while working full-time. I also appreciated focusing on one subject at a time. We had a good combination of group and individual assignments. What I enjoyed most was how, from day 1 of my law studies at ALU, I was taught how to write proper legal essays (IRAC format) under time-pressure circumstances. This prepared me tremendously for the Baby Bar because writing effective essays quickly had become second nature to me.  I know this is not the standard practice at ABA schools (Many of my friends are attending ABA schools.)

Why did you choose an online law school?

Despite having a passion for studying law and wanting to pursue my dream of obtaining a legal degree, as a full-time working professional and business owner,  I had a commitment to my employees and clients. These commitments prevented me from attending a traditional law school. So I was convinced that my dream of a legal education would have to remain just that – a dream. Then I came across ALU. With its flexible online program, I was able to accomplish my goal.

What was the process like getting into an LLM program at USC after graduating from an online Non-ABA law school?

The Process of applying to the LLM program at USC was not an easy one. During my initial contact with the USC admissions office, I was told that I could not even apply since I had attended a Non-ABA law school. This was very disappointing, but I remembered what one of my first professors at ALU had once said: “there is the rule of law and always an exception to that rule,” I was determined to be that EXCEPTION and find a way to apply. I contacted Professor Jung and consulted with him as far as approaching this hurdle. He was extremely helpful and shared with me certain facts and avenues. Once these were brought up to the Admissions Office, I was granted permission to apply.

I was well aware that this was just my first hurdle. I still had to overcome the Admissions Office’s perception of a Non-ABA Law student applying to one of the top 20 law schools in the country. So I enlisted the help of Dean Jessica Park and Professor Graubert (both with outstanding academic achievements) who graciously submitted recommendation letters for me. In addition, I made sure that I wrote a personal statement that was from the heart yet very descriptive of my background and experience.

Why did you decide to continue your legal education? What are your career goals?

As I continued my legal education at ALU, I became further convinced that to better serve others, including my employees and clients, with increased efficiency in resolution skills, I must attain more powerful and specific tools – hence my decision to continue my legal education. As a Business Broker, I work with many foreign investors that purchase existing and established businesses despite cultural and language differences. At times, this creates conflict and disputes between buyers and sellers of these businesses. My ultimate career goal is to set up a firm that is primarily committed to dispute resolution, either through mediation, arbitration, or both for foreign investors and immigrants that enter the country in pursuit of their American Dream but may have run into some conflicts and obstacles along the way.

Why did you choose the LLM path in particular?

Being a Business Broker and involved in the sale of businesses, I see first hand the painstaking process of litigation. I see how long, costly, and emotionally draining this process can get. I also am aware that more than 95% of cases never make it to trial. As a strong believer in maintaining and building relationships, I have become convinced that mediation and litigation seem to be a better dispute resolution approach than litigation, hence my reason for choosing LLM in ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution).

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Explore how ALU’s online distance education courses can work for you. As one of the top distance education universities in California for non-traditional students, our Admissions team has the information you need to help you with your application and succeed with our school. Additional information is available for those who seek transfer credit or want to study at ALU as an international student.

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