Paula DeNardis: 1L at Ventura College of Law

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STUDENT PROFILE                                                                                           1. 800.973.1177

                             Paula DeNardis: 1L at Ventura College of Law
                             [By Mahsa Khalilifar]
                             At first glance, Paula DeNardis looks like your average stay-at-home mom, but there’s more to this hardworking lady. Not
                             only is she raising three boys ranging in age from four to 12, but she is also attending law school. While most law students
                             quit their jobs and devote themselves to becoming lawyers, DeNardis does not have that convenience or luxury. Raising her
                             children and reaching her goal are the things that keep her going, but it still proves to be difficult.

“I have a lot of family talks to explain why         “Even though I’ve had delays to fulfilling a          This mother of three is hoping to graduate
I am not home at night or why I may have             lifelong dream, it will be well worth it,” she        in a few years, and at the age of 36, she is
to spend Saturdays in the law library,”              said.                                                 going to take the California bar exam. She is
DeNardis said.                                                                                             also a student member of the Ventura County
                                                     DeNardis is the first in her family to get not        Bar Association and the Los Angeles County
At 33 years old, DeNardis has already                only a high school diploma but also a college         Bar Association, as well as a member of
finished one semester at her local law               degree, and now she is taking on law school.          California Women Lawyers.
school; in the fall, she is going back to
                                                        Q. What do you do for fun?
school to devote whatever free time she has                                                                Although she started law school later in life,
                                                        A. I spend as much time as I can with
left to becoming a lawyer. There are many                                                                  DeNardis said she is prepared to work hard,
                                                        my husband and my boys. I also love
moms like DeNardis who are going to school                                                                 mostly to provide for her children and set a
                                                        volunteering. One of my favorite memories
and raising families, but she is one of the                                                                good example.
                                                        of my many years of volunteer work was
few determined to make it all the way to                when I was a volunteer referee for AYSO
                                                                                                           “Knowing that I am possibly changing their
graduation. After taking a long hiatus to raise         soccer during the year both of my oldest
                                                        boys were playing soccer.                          futures in some way by attending college and
her children, she could not bear to throw her
                                                                                                           then law school keeps me going,” she said.
childhood dream away.
                                                        Q. What CD is in your CD player right now?
                                                        A. Kelly Clarkson, My December (her                Her experience has proven to be very useful
“I have wanted to be an attorney since I was            newest album).                                     in terms of preparing her for what she will
in fourth grade! When other kids played
                                                        Q. What is the last magazine you read?             have to endure. She has worked as a legal
‘house,’ I played ‘court,’” DeNardis recalled.
                                                        A. It is summer, so I finally have time to         receptionist, paralegal, and legal secretary
                                                        read non-school items. I just finished             over the past few years, so she’s familiarized
DeNardis is now married for the second
                                                        reading In Style. Just because I am a mom          herself with the field. DeNardis seems to
time and is even assisting her husband in his
                                                        and a student doesn’t mean I don’t want to         be optimistic about the future and her path
custody battles. However, she said she has              be fashionable.                                    despite the challenges ahead.
no regrets about the past and is even taking
a new approach to the custody issue.                    Q. What is your favorite TV show?
                                                                                                           “Do I wish I would have done it right after
                                                        A. I must admit that I watch tons of legal
                                                                                                           high school? Yes. But then I wouldn’t have
                                                        dramas (fiction or real) with my husband
“I want to work in family law and specifically                                                             had my three wonderful children,” she said.
                                                        every night before bed. That is our
would love the chance to fight for fathers’
                                                        downtime together.
rights,” DeNardis said. “Most of my fellow                                                                 ON THE NET
students have been shocked to hear that,                Q. Who is your role model?
but I feel that there are a lot of courts that          A. I don’t think I can pick just one here.         Santa Barbara and Ventura Colleges of Law
still favor the mother instead of objectively           So many people have inspired me to be    
looking at all the facts.”                              the person I am today, whether it be past
                                                        teachers/employers or friends and family.          LSAT Preparation: TestMasters
DeNardis did not score very high on the                 Q. What is something most people don’t
LSAT, but a nearby law school accepted                  know about you?
                                                                                                           California Women Lawyers
her, and she was excited to take on the new             A. That I write poetry and absolutely love to
                                                        sing karaoke!                            


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Description: Paula Denardis Is One Of Very Hardworking Lady Who Has Completed Her First Semester In The Ventura College Of Law She Wants To Be An Example For Her Children. She Is Also A Member Of California Women Lawyers.
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