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Diana Michta is a third year law student at Northeastern University School of Law and anticipates a May 2014 graduation. Although she has several areas of interest, she plans on practicing corporate and commercial Law in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Diana also plans on taking the New York State Bar in 2015.
Diana was born and raised in Boston, MA. When asked about her parents who immigrated to the United States from Poland, she said:
"I grew up with two loving parents who came to the United States with no English, no education, and about $100, collectively, to their names. My parents managed to learn English, earn their Bachelor's and then Master's degrees, work full time, buy a house, and start a business, all while raising me and my little sister. I'm sure my parents are proud of my accomplishments, but they can't possibly be more proud of me than I am of them."
Diana earned her Bachelor of Arts in History from Harvard College in May 2011. From 2009 to 2011, she served as the Treasurer and was a Member of the Board of Directors for the Harvard-Radcliffe Gilbert & Sullivan Players, a nonprofit organization that puts on two Gilbert and Sullivan operettas every year. Diana also produced a number of productions, including Proof, The Spanish Tragedy, The Pirates of Penzance, and Les Plaisirs de la Paix. She stated, "To be honest, I spent so much time in the theater while an undergrad that it's where I met my fiancé, where he proposed, and where we're planning to get married this summer!" In 2011, Diana was nominated for the Louise Donovan Award, which is the Office for the Arts at Harvard's "Behind the Scenes/Unsung Hero" award.
When she wasn't in the theater, Diana volunteered for An Evening with Champions, a public charity nonprofit committee that is dedicated to raise money for The Jimmy Fund by hosting an annual world-class figure skating exhibition at the Bright Hockey Center in Allston, MA. From 2008 to 2009, she served as an accounts payable clerk at the Boston Culinary Group. Diana also practiced kendo (2007 to 2008), a modern Japanese martial art that uses protective armor (bogul) and bamboo swords (shinai).
At Northeastern University School of Law, Diana served as a member of the Intellectual Property Society (2011 to 2014). In 2013, she served as a research assistant for the legal research and writing department. Diana also served as teaching assistant in 2014. She is the recipient of the Academic Excellence Scholarship and the Cetrulo Family Scholarship.
While studying law, Diana served as a judicial intern for Magistrate Judge Robert B. Collings in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. She wrote draft opinions, made recommendations for a variety of civil law cases, prepared bench memoranda, served as elbow clerk on a motion for summary judgment, attended oral arguments before the First Circuit Court of Appeals, and took part in a naturalization ceremony.
Diana then interned at the Financial Eligibility Project within the Children's Disability Project at Greater Boston Legal Services. Her clientele consisted of low-income children with disabilities whose Supplemental Security Income benefits had been wrongfully suspended, terminated, or reduced. She recalled, "Being able to put my finance skills to good use and advocate for children in front of the Social Security Administration was an incredible experience. I saved families from having to wrongfully repay thousands of dollars, and I received my favorite client gift to date: a picture of two dinosaurs, one green and one purple, that my client colored in while visiting our office."
Diana is currently serving as a law clerk at Looney & Grossman LLP, a general practice law firm in Boston. She works with twenty-five attorneys, and she is involved in all phases of litigation and transactional practice, as well as the occasional conciliation. Diana noted:
"The areas of law I do the most work in include corporate and commercial law, contract disputes, subrogation, divorce, professional liability defense, and real property. On any given day I'm doing legal research, analyzing a provision in a contract, working on memoranda and trial briefs, analyzing financial documents and discovery responses, bouncing around ideas and legal theories, preparing CLE materials, and creating other external documents and correspondences."
Diana is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association, Federal Bar Association, and the Connecticut Bar Association.
What are her hobbies and personal interests? Diana replied:
"My hobbies are running, painting, sketching, reading, theater, caring for animals, and gardening. My apartment is pretty much an indoor garden, with well over 25 plants and tropical orchids. I've been a member of the Museum of Fine Arts for several years - I can't get enough of Impressionism - and I do my best to keep up with all the productions and publications my friends and family are involved with."
Diana's Academic Law Career and Future Aspirations
Why did Diana go into the law? "I chose to practice law because I enjoy understanding how the world works. It's only through understanding the systems that are already in place that you can strive to improve them."
What are the areas of the law she hopes to practice? "I plan to practice corporate and commercial law. Some of my favorite classes in law school were corporate taxation, secured transactions, and international trade."
Diana shared her aims and aspirations. "I'm a philanthropist at heart. My aspiration is to run a socially responsible multinational corporation and to improve the world in every way I can."
She also discussed her key accomplishments. "I'm the only member of my family to have graduated from Harvard, and by the age of 25 I will have completed two degrees, run a half marathon, sat for the bar exam in two states, and, most importantly, married my best friend."
What are Diana's key strengths and skills that she would like to use to advance her career goal? "I'm analytical, personable, financially literate, and confident that I can achieve anything I set my mind to doing."
Since law school can be hectic at times, she pointed out how she relieves stress. "When I'm stressed I play with my cat and I find something else to occupy my mind for a while."
Many readers are probably wondering how Diana handles new assignments. The third year law student shared her process: "When I get a new assignment, it falls into one of two categories: I either know how to do it, or I know how to figure out how to do it. That's the benefit of modern technology, being adept at legal research, and never being too timid to ask for help."
Where does she derive her confidence? "I make a point of finding beauty in the world, whether it's a smiling child, a loving parent, an unsolicited act of kindness, or the sun setting over an open meadow. It fills me with love and hope, and confidence, and everything becomes possible."
Three Wishes to Live By, Top Priority, Coping with Fear, Community Service and Most Influential Traveling Experience
If Diana had three wishes, what would she wish for? She acknowledged:
"1) I would wish for my loved ones to achieve their dreams and aspirations and to feel a sense of accomplishment and genuine happiness every day;
2) A cure for cancer, heart disease, and all other medical ailments that are currently not curable, and to make the cure widely accessible and affordable worldwide; and
3) Infinite more wishes."
What is her top priority outside of work? "My top priority outside of work is bringing job and beauty to the world. I love spending time with family and friends, helping others, and bettering myself, and society."
In regard to handling fear, Diana admitted, "The only way to deal with fear is to face it head on. Take a deep breath, count to three, and then face it."
Has she participated in community service? Diana asserted:
"In November 2013, I became involved with Christmas in the City, a 100% volunteer organization that hosts an enormous Christmas celebration for over 3,000 children and parents from homeless shelters in Boston and its surrounding communities, and that donates toys and gifts to an additional 2,000 families that can't be accommodated at the celebration. It was incredible to be a part of such a large organization that's instrumental to bringing joy to thousands of families during the holiday season. I can't wait to be a part of it again next year!"
Does she have a most influential traveling experience? "I love to travel and explore. My favorite places to visit are Maine and my grandmother's house in Poland. The Mediterranean is great too."
Personal Philosophy, People You Want to Surround Yourself With, Favorite Quote and Final Thoughts
What is Diana's personal philosophy? "Do what makes you happy."
The future attorney discussed what she believes holds more truth in light of her personal philosophy. Was it fate or choice? "Choice. You can't wait for life to happen; you have to make it happen. Life is too short to not do what makes you happy, and if what makes you happy can bring joy to others, that's all the better."
What kind of situations and people is Diana attracted to? "I enjoy being around people who are comfortable being themselves."
Her favorite quote is by Ralph Waldo Emerson:
"To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."
When asked why Emerson's quote resonates with her, Diana stated, "It's beautiful. The first time I read the quote, it touched me."
Is there anything else you care to share professionally or personally? "Every day I do everything I can to try to improve the world. That's something about me that'll never change."
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