Student Q&A: Kanomé Jones, 2L (She/Her)

Kanomé Jones is a 2L, loves anime, and enjoys being involved in many different activities at UCI Law. She is the newly elected Editor-in-Chief of the UC Irvine Law Review, a Research Fellow for Professor Mikkor, a Community Fellow for 1Ls and is an oralist on the Jessup International Moot Court Team. Kanomé will spend her 2L summer at Milbank LLP and Gunderson Dettmer. 

Photo of Kanome Jones

Q: Why did you choose UCI Law?

I chose UCI Law because of its welcoming community and young status as a premier law school. In my experience, the newer institutions have the opportunity to revolutionize understanding and set new foundations within a particular field. I wanted to be a part of that. In addition, UCI has been cultivating a diverse student population and works hard to stay inclusive of and provide resources for many types of intersectional identities.

Q: How has your experience been navigating higher education/law school?

It has had its ups and downs, like I imagine most folks experience. As a first-generation law school student, navigating 1L was a steep learning curve, but I made it through thanks to my excellent professors, amazing friends, and an incredibly supportive partner. Now, in my second year, I have a firmer handle on what works for me regarding time management, studying, and extracurricular activities. I also can say no with much more ease. As I prepare for my third year, I feel confident that I have built habits and relationships that have set a foundation for my personal and professional success. 

Q: As we celebrate Black History Month, can you tell us about your experience as part of the student organization Black Law Students Association (BLSA)?

BLSA is a fantastic student organization. The current board, Isaiah, Jelani, Justin, & Lauren, have injected considerable joy into this year’s events and remain committed to providing spaces for Black law students to connect in authentic ways. In addition, BLSA is excellent at curating specific networking events for Black law students and highlighting the diversity initiatives in the OC and beyond. I have benefited from the knowledge and community of BLSA, and I always have a great time when I can attend meetings and events. 

Q: Do you have a favorite pro bono memory?

My favorite pro bono memory happened in the Civil Rights Law and Motion Clinic. During that clinic, I completed various court documents and fee waivers for clients and then, on a call, reviewed the forms with the client so they could file them with the courthouse. The client found it difficult to understand the paperwork of serving someone. The client continued apologizing as they asked me to explain the procedure again. I reassured the client and told them I wanted them to leave the conversation with a healthy understanding of the process. Eventually, we found a good metaphor that helped unlock the client’s understanding, and they expressed gratitude for my time. It was one of the first moments I grappled with the barriers of how folks engage with the legal system. It felt gratifying to talk the client through the process so they could have more ease at the courthouse. 

Q: What’s your proudest accomplishment so far at UCI Law and what do you hope to accomplish in the future?

My proudest accomplishment at UCI Law thus far is securing a 1L Diversity Fellowship with Gunderson Dettmer for my first summer. Securing this opportunity took a lot of work, preparation, and courage. Large law firms can be intimidating, and I feel proud that I stayed authentic throughout the networking and interview process. A related accomplishment is that I have taken everything I have learned in the 1L job search journey and mentored other 1Ls. I enjoy being of service to others and take pride in sharing knowledge and resources so that other folks can experience success. In the future, I will invest in my development as a lawyer, keep being of service no matter where I am, and cultivate joy as often as possible.