Cort VanOstran '14


Harvard University, AB Cum Laude in Field of Government
Hometown: Joplin, MO

Previous Experience:
Intern, Office of Congressman Michael Capuano (D-MA)
Intern, Massachusetts Attorney General's Office
Intern, The Hershewe Law Firm PC 
Manager for a Missouri State Representative campaign

Law School Highlights:
Student Bar Association President, Community Service Committee
Phi Alpha Delta
Managing Editor, Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

Q: Why did you choose Washington University?
A: I knew from my internship experiences that being a lawyer is about more than just knowing the law; it's also about interacting with people from all walks of life and serving clients in their most critical times of need. Because of this, I wanted a legal education that would be both academic and practical: one that would give me the chance to engage intellectually with the law, but that would also prepare me for an actual career as a lawyer. I feel Wash U gets this balance exactly right. Professors encourage us to interact with the law, not just memorize it. But at the same time, there is a salient sense that our education is moving us "towards" something - a meaningful and consequential career as a lawyer. And, after four years on the East Coast, I was excited to return to the sunnier skies of St. Louis.

Q: What is it like living in St. Louis?
A: St. Louis is the perfect place to study law - it combines the benefits of life in a big city with the relaxed pace of the Midwest. Wash U is located in a great part of the city - it's adjacent to Forest Park, a beautiful and expansive park, complete with ball fields, running trails, and one of the largest free zoos in the country. Whether your thing is sports, arts, or nightlife, there's always something going on. But at the end of the day, it's easy to carve out space to focus on my work as well. Plus, the cost of living is phenomenal!

Q: What are your impressions of your fellow law students?
My classmates have been the best part of my Wash U experience so far. They are diverse, talented, and bring a wealth of experience to the table. Most of all, they are genuinely nice people - the kind of people who make studying in the library late into the night a pleasure instead of a pain. I feel lucky to be part of such an exceptional group - and I know it's an association I'll be proud of for my entire career.