Nicholas Pennington: 1L at Drexel University College of Law, Philadelphia, PA

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					STUDENT PROFILE                                                                                       1. 800.973.1177

                            Nicholas Pennington: 1L at Drexel University College of
                            Law, Philadelphia, PA
                            [By Rebecca Unzicker]
                            Growing up in the rural East Tennessee community of Clax Gap, Nicholas Pennington did not receive much encouragement to
                            obtain an education beyond high school. In fact, he reported that his high school guidance counselor responded to his dreams
                            by asking him if he thought he was too good to stay in Clax Gap and “get a job like everybody else.”

Heartened by his parents’ support, he was the        recreation, and tourism management. He               ground zero were safe, Pennington soon
first in his family to have the opportunity to       soon captured a plum position with a team            realized he was out of a job. The hotel
attend college. Now a L at Drexel University        slated to open the new Ritz-Carlton Hotel in         delayed its opening, and Pennington’s position
College of Law, Pennington hopes to become           New York City in September 200.                     was eliminated.
an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania.                                        As he prepared to take the train across              “From that time on, I bounced around from
                                                     the Hudson River early in the morning on             various family members searching for jobs
Although he has wanted to become a lawyer            September , 200, Pennington’s father              where there were none in the aftermath of the
since childhood, Pennington’s road to                called to give him the news that the World           attacks,” Pennington said. “I was faced with a
law school has not been an easy one. He              Trade Center had been attacked. After the            bleak job market, as the tourism market had
quickly fell behind in his freshman year of          initial confusion and once he had determined         come to a screeching halt.”
college and was eventually diagnosed with a          that his new coworkers six blocks from
                                                                                                          Pennington’s relentlessness, which he
learning disorder. After learning strategies
                                                                                                          learned in part from his father, resulted in his
and techniques to overcome his dyslexia,              Q. What do you do for fun?
                                                                                                          eventually excelling in the Manhattan hotel
Pennington got back on the road to college            A. Fun? During law school? Seriously, I
                                                      was on crew in college and have enjoyed             industry in the next few years. But the lure of
success, but he had left a shattered academic
                                                      getting back into rowing, as Philly is a            the law never really left him alone.
record behind him.
                                                      great place for the sport. I also try to
                                                      spend time with my wife, Meaghan, and               “While I did love hospitality, I still had a
“At first I was destroyed. I was so
                                                      dog, Gracie, every chance that I get!               yearning to go to law school,” Pennington
embarrassed,” Pennington said.
                                                                                                          said. “I knew that if I was ever going to do it,
                                                      Q. What CD is in your CD player right now?          then it had to be now.”
With help from his school’s educational-
                                                      A. I haven’t used a CD player in a while
assistance department, Pennington learned to          since I discovered the iPod. I usually use          Drawing on what he had learned from his role
work around his disability and finally achieved       the iPod for running, so most of the songs          model, his father, Pennington believed that
a near-perfect grade point average.                   are things that keep me motivated, which            hard work and unyielding pursuit would lead
                                                      is a wide variety. You may find anything            to success.
“Unfortunately, this came a bit too late, as the      from Dolly Parton to The Killers.
damage was done,” Pennington said. “I knew                                                                “I have to admit that my father is my role
                                                      Q. What is the last magazine you read?
that there was little hope of being accepted to                                                           model,” Pennington said. “He came from
                                                      A. Leisure reading seems to be a thing
law school.”                                          of the past, but I think I was checking out         nothing and through much adversity to be able
                                                      Travel and Leisure. I still like to keep an         to raise a family and provide much support
Determined and hardworking, Pennington                eye on the hotel world.                             for me throughout my life. I have witnessed
eventually turned his talents to the hospitality                                                          his excellent work ethic and relentless drive
                                                      Q. What is your favorite TV show?
industry and earned a master’s degree from                                                                my entire life, and he has been an amazing
                                                      A. The Price is Right.
the University of Tennessee in hospitality,                                                               example.”

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STUDENT PROFILE                                                                            1. 800.973.1177

                                               practicing law. Trained to be detail-oriented   “I have learned a great deal about myself and
                                               in the hotel business, Pennington said he       the world around me,” he said. “While the
                                               now looks for the little details in every       side steps here and there may have made me
                                               case or statute, hoping to find a detail that   a bit older than the rest of my classmates, I
                                               someone else has missed.                        am lucky to have the life experiences that I
                                                                                               gained along the way.”
                                               Planning to practice criminal law in
                                               Philadelphia, Pennington believes this area     On The neT
“I knew that my undergraduate GPA would        of law allows lawyers to make the most
be a hindrance, but I hoped that there would   significant impact on the community.            Drexel University College of Law
be some school out there that would see past                                         
that and offer me an acceptance,” he added.    “I hope to make an impact on the
                                               Philadelphia community,” Pennington said.       The Ritz-Carlton
Now in the top 0% of his class at Drexel,     “Specifically, I want to make an impact for
Pennington said the skills of attention to     regular people rather than corporations.”
detail, diligence, and discretion that he                                                      Philadelphia, PA
learned working in some of the world’s         Pennington has traveled a long road from the
greatest hotels will serve him well in         hills of East Tennessee but said he wouldn’t
                                               change one step of the journey.


Description: Drexel University College Of Law Student Nicholas Pennington Was Grown Up In The Rural East Tennessee Community Of Clax Gap. His Determination And Hardworking Turned His Talents To The Hospitality Industry By Getting A Master Degree From The University Of Tennessee.
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