Aaron Ball knew he wanted to study law in his first year at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida, when he took an Introduction to Law Class. "I like this," he said, "this is interesting, this is challenging, this is what I want to do."
After completing his undergraduate degree, Aaron's initial plan was to move closer to his home state of Kentucky. "Everyone was so nice here," Aaron recalls, citing the diverse, inclusive and accepting culture of South Florida-and, as he quickly learned, of the Law Center - as one of the many reasons he applied to NSU for his J.D. "NSU Shepard Broad was the only school I applied to in Florida, and I honestly didn't think I would end up here." But after coming in - as he puts it "randomly" one day for a campus visit, he knew that Shepard Broad was the place for him. The Admissions staff personally toured Aaron around campus, showing him exactly what he wanted to see.
Another draw to NSU Shepard Broad Law Center for Aaron was its extensive list of student organizations. In his first year, Aaron joined two student-run organizations: Lambda Law Society, an organization which seeks to further awareness of legal and social rights of LGBT persons and promotes the highest standards of professional ethics and equality in the law school community; and the Family Law Society, an organization dedicated to familiarizing students with the many areas of family law by providing them with the opportunity to network and educate themselves through events, fundraisers, volunteer activities, and other community projects.
Based on his first-year grades, Aaron secured a role with the student-run Nova Law Review and now serves as Assistant Lead Articles Editor. The Review, a student-operated journal, serves judges, practitioners, scholars, and students by publishing outstanding legal scholarship and enhancing the intellectual climate of Shepard Broad Law. Through its collaboration with the legal community, the Review provides timely and thought-provoking commentary from judges, legal practitioners, law professors, and select students. "I've been thinking about Law Review since undergrad," Aaron says, but admits that joining the Law Review wasn't about the status; "being in the Nova Law Review has helped me learn the Bluebook and become a better editor. Sure, it's definitely a resume-booster, but for me, it's about the values I've learned, work ethic and time management skills I've gained and the professional preparedness that comes with it. The resume booster might get you the job, but it's your skills and experience that will allow you to keep the job."
Aaron cites participation in student organizations as a great way to get informed on issues and to network. "I've made many great friends and mentors in law school," he shares, reiterating that the inclusive, supportive atmosphere of NSU Shepard Broad has contributed to his success.
In the summer before his third-year, he worked for a tax and bankruptcy firm and has recently begun a position with in-house counsel at Automated Health Care Solutions. Aaron admits that these jobs, in conjunction with the Shepard Broad College of Law Experience have widened his thinking about his career path. "I'm interested in teaching after practicing for a while, either in a law school or an undergraduate legal studies program," Aaron says.