Hometown: Tamuning, Guam
Degree: B.A. Political Science, Minor in Sociology, University of Southern California
Why did you choose UH Law?
UH Law has a strong Environmental Law Program. After law school, I intend to return to Guam to practice. As Guam rapidly develops in the wake of a large buildup of U.S. military forces on the island, Guam needs more attorneys who are grounded in the field of environmental law to protect the island’s natural resources. UH Law’s Environmental Law Program offers an array of environmental law courses that help prepare me to hit the ground running as best I can, once I am finished with law school.
What were you doing before you started Law School?
Even before law school, I had an amazing opportunity to experience working with the law. As a staffer at the Guam Legislature for Vice-Speaker Benjamin Cruz, I helped research policies and draft a number of bills.
Where are you headed after you graduate?
I will head back home to Guam after I graduate.
Describe a fellow student or professor or mentor who has inspired you.
Professor Linda Hamilton Krieger’s passion to shake up the status quo in the name of justice is contagious. Believe me – after hearing just one of her speeches, you will have the urge to do something great. Dedicated, driven, and inspiring are but a few words that can only begin to describe “Auntie Linda.”
What have you most appreciated about being an Ulu Lehua Scholar?
As an Ulu Lehua Scholar, I have become a part of a smaller family and a strong niche network within the larger UH Law 'ohana.
What advice would you give to an entering law student?
Stay driven. Read "The Buffalo Creek Disaster" by Gerald M. Stern.
Christopher Rasalan Odoca
Hometown: Tamuning, Guam
The UH Law community exemplifies the Hawaiian word “ohana.” Students, faculty, and other staff are very friendly and welcoming. There is no aggressive competition between the students, and the professors are welcoming and accessible.”
I chose UH Law because I wanted to experience studying in Hawaiʻi, and I learned that the School has an excellent Environmental Law program. My graduate degree fellowship with the East-West Center is also tied with enrollment at UH.”
I chose UH Law because Hawai'i is my home and I plan on staying here to practice. Also, as a Hawaiian, I am interested in Native Hawaiian Rights under the law, thus, the program here allows me to explore this interest in great depth.”
Be qualified, be prepared, ask if you don't understand, and trust yourself.”
In law school you expect brilliant, confident, articulate. What you don't expect is to have all those qualities plus kindness and modesty. I'm inspired everyday by my fellow students among whom these qualities are available in abundance.”
It's the total package for me. I am able to attend law school at home, be around my family and friends, watch my nephew grow, dance hula, and be a part of a really special community at Richardson.”
I would describe my law school classmates as “social characters.” Everyone came to this law school from many different places, financial backgrounds, and ethnicities.”
When I'm not in class, I can most likely be found in the library, it's the best place to study that I know. However if I'm not on campus, I'm usually spending time with friends or family around town, especially trying out the latest restaurants!”
Everyone is committed to your success. And I get to start and end each day with a view of Diamond Head!”
After reading about law school, I was expecting the professors to publically humiliate the students with the socratic method but it turns out they are quite friendly and even humorous at times.”