Emmanuel García, Class of 2006
A Southwestern education has opened up a world of opportunities for me, beyond any I could have imagined when I attended SU back in 2002. My choice to attend SU remains one of the best decisions I have ever made. I was initially attracted to Southwestern for the same reasons most students are drawn to SU—its rankings; world-class liberal arts curriculum and faculty; small class setting, conducive to close-knit student-professor interactions; and its beautifully captivating campus and thriving campus life. Most importantly, however, I was excited to join an institution that prides itself in fostering diversity, promotes dialogue among differing viewpoints, and encourages the creation of knowledge through dissidence and discourse. This is indeed the hallmark of a great university.
At Southwestern, I majored in Biology and Spanish, aspiring to become a doctor and keen on holding steadfast to my Mexican-American roots. I was particularly interested in learning about the history, the literature, and the socioeconomic struggles of Latin Americans and the resulting Mexican diaspora which brought my own family to this great country. I also knew that being bilingual was an asset that would open many doors, and would allow me to connect with people from all walks of life.
The academic life at SU is second to none. I recall constantly being challenged by the academic rigor of the school and being supported by the tireless efforts of dedicated faculty and staff. As a Spanish major, I thoroughly enjoyed taking classes in Peninsular and Latin American literature. I had the opportunity to study abroad and learn about world cinema in London. I also completed an honors thesis in Spanish, comparing themes in narratives written in Latin American countries facing dictatorships during the 1970s with Mexican literature written after the 1968 student protest movements that ended in the tragic massacre at Tlatelolco square. Through this work, I sought to show that our sense of humanity in facing common struggles is universal and transcends national boundaries.
After graduating from Southwestern in 2006, I gained admission to medical school. However, after completing my first year, I realized I was no longer interested in pursuing a career in medicine. At Southwestern, I had enjoyed engaging in active and meaningful discourse and developed a love for debate and argumentation. In short, SU had inadvertently nurtured my interests in the practice of law.
In 2011, I graduated from St. Mary’s University School of Law in San Antonio, Texas. The skills fostered by Southwestern, from critical thinking and analysis, to writing and public speaking, were crucial for my success in law school. In 2012, I completed a post-doctorate LLM program at the University of Texas in Austin, where I focused in International Law and Commercial Arbitration. During this time, I had the opportunity to compete in an International Arbitration Competition in Vienna, Austria, featuring over 1200 students from all over the world, where I was honored to be recognized as one of the best oralists. I currently work as a Briefing Attorney at the Texas Fourth Court of Appeals in San Antonio, Texas, where I conduct legal research and draft opinions in a variety of civil and criminal cases.
Undoubtedly, I am grateful for the experiences I had at Southwestern. I not only received an excellent education, but I also made life-long friendships and met people who truly impacted my life and who will remain a part of me forever.