Andy Meehan: Ironman Competitor and 3L at University of Wisconsin Law School in Madison, WI by LawCrossing


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									STUDENT PROFILE                                                                                     1. 800.973.1177

                            Andy Meehan: Ironman Competitor and 3L at University
                            of Wisconsin Law School in Madison, WI
                            [By Heather Jung]
                            What is the first thing that comes to mind when someone mentions the Ironman competition? Most people probably think of
                            grueling hours spent running, swimming, and bicycling. But what about grueling hours spent studying and writing? In Andy
                            Meehan’s case, both situations apply; he is both an Ironman competitor and a 3L at University of Wisconsin Law School.

Meehan has participated in two Ironman races,      conducting intelligence and antiterrorism
which are triathlons consisting of 2.4-mile        operations. While overseas, most of my job
swims, 2-mile bike rides, and runs of 26.2       entailed working with foreign police and
miles. While he said that he has not won any of    intelligence services in an effort to prevent
the races, he has done well enough to qualify      terrorist attacks before they occurred. I’d like
for the world championships, which take place      to go into more detail, but if I told you anything
in Hawaii.                                         more, I’d have to kill you. No, seriously.”          Meehan said that it was his time and
                                                                                                        experiences in the military that made him want
He has also participated in several other                                                               to become a lawyer.
                                                     Q. What do you do for fun?
triathlon competitions, and last year, Meehan        A. I travel as much as possible. Over
was named an “All-American” by USA                   winter break, my girlfriend (who is also a         “Everything I did had to be first cleared with
Triathlon, which he said is the governing body       3L) and I managed to get to New Zealand            the lawyers, and eventually I decided it would
of triathlon competitions. He said that training     for three weeks. For spring break, we did          be a lot more fun to be the one determining the
takes quite a bit of time-about 20 hours             a road trip to Shenandoah National Park            decisions of the box rather than the guy forced
per week usually consisting of five miles of         and hiked on the Appalachian Trail. When
                                                                                                        to operate within it,” he said.
swimming, 200 miles of cycling, and 50 miles         I’m not traveling, I’m usually trying to plan
                                                     the next trip.
of running.                                                                                             It is this out-of-the-box thinking and way of
                                                     Q. What CD is in your CD player right now?         life that Meehan enjoys most about law school.
“But I find that not only does my training make      A. Southern Rock Opera by the Drive-By             He said that it is an ongoing exercise and that
me feel better, but it also helps me focus           Truckers.                                          even if things are “settled,” there is still room
during the rest of my day,” Meehan said. “I’m                                                           for arguments “that might justify a position
hoping it’s something I can continue to do for a     Q. What is the last magazine you read?
                                                                                                        that would otherwise be unsustainable.” He
long time to come.”                                  A. National Geographic.
                                                                                                        enjoys the fact that the law commands that
                                                     Q. What is your favorite TV show?                  “unpopular or repugnant” causes be defended
Prior to attending law school, Meehan received                                                          the same way more popular or righteous
                                                     A. I’d have to put The Office at the top of
his B.S. in Mathematics from the United States       the list, although I’ve resigned myself to         causes are.
Air Force Academy in 996 and his master’s in        the idea that I never seem to be around
public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School          to watch it. The one show I watch fairly           During the summer after his first year (and
of Government in 998. After graduating from         religiously is The Daily Show.                     for part of his second year), Meehan interned
college, he spent eight years as an officer in                                                          with the Wisconsin Innocence Project, which
                                                     Q. Who is your role model?
the Air Force.                                                                                          he described as, by far, the best academic
                                                     A. My parents.
                                                                                                        experience he has ever had. The Wisconsin
“I was stationed all over the country and did        Q. What is something most people don’t             Innocence Project is one of the criminal law
two tours in the Middle East,” Meehan said. “I       know about you?                                    clinics available to law students at his school.
commanded a unit of special agents who were          A. I’ve been a lifelong fan of professional        While the cases are generally overseen by
responsible both for investigating felonies          wrestling.                                         faculty members, the students take the most
committed by military personnel as well as                                                              ownership-they screen the potential cases,

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STUDENT PROFILE                                                                                 1. 800.973.1177

conduct investigations, and argue on behalf of    academic interests or public service, are         have been his peers. Because of the school’s
clients in court.                                 “great supplements to legal education.”           intellectual, ideological, and cultural diversity,
                                                                                                    he said, he has been exposed to “more
                                                                                                    interesting people and worldviews in the
                                                                                                    past three years than I was in my previous 30

                                                                                                    Meehan will graduate in May. After graduation,
                                                                                                    he plans to practice at Boardman Law Firm in
                                                                                                    Madison, WI. He hopes to eventually get into
“Not only is it a tremendously important cause,   “I have to admit, though, that I am much          politics.
but the learning curve becomes exponentially      more doubtful of the benefits of special-
steeper once the one seeking answers is           interest student associations. While it might     On The neT
a client sitting across the table (or on the      be comforting to some students to have the
other side of the bars) from you rather than a    safety net of an organization of students with    University of Wisconsin Law School
professor standing behind a podium,” Meehan       the same ideological or cultural backgrounds,
said.                                             I also think that students who don’t make an
                                                  effort to interact outside of class with people   Boardman Law Firm
During his time at law school, Meehan has         who aren’t like themselves are missing a
participated in several student organizations,    tremendous opportunity,” said Meehan.
most notably the Wisconsin Law Review                                                               Wisconsin Innocence Project
and Phi Alpha Delta. He feels that student        He feels that the people who have influenced
organizations, especially groups geared toward    him the most during his time at law school


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