John F. Barwell, who was drawn to the legal profession because of its orientation toward service, will have the opportunity to promote the ideals of the profession while serving as a student editor for a national law publication.
Barwell, a third-year student at The University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law, was elected in a national search to serve a one-year term as student editor of the American Bar Association Student Lawyer magazine.
The appointment comes also with a one-year term on the board for the Law Student Division of the association, largest voluntary professional organization for lawyers.
Barwell had served with the U.S. Marine Corps for 15 years, serving as a military combat journalist for the bulk of his service. He was drawn to the legal profession because of its orientation toward service and the pervasive importance of the field, he said.
Regarding his national position, Barwell said he felt it was an opportunity to combine his journalistic background and appreciation for the legal field and intends, in his new position, to explore the pervasive benefits of the profession.
"Traditionally, I think law is recognized by outsiders as an elite and mysterious profession that is only available to a select few, well connected students," said Barwell, who intends to pursue a career in civil litigation.
"I have realized that law is really a profession of service, filled with people who are dedicated to helping their communities and, more importantly, helping people," he said.
As student editor of the Student Lawyer magazine, Barwell is responsible for generating and assigning stories and also writing stories for the magazine, which reaches law students throughout the United States each month September through May.
Nancy Stanley, the law college's assistant dean for development and external relations, said the appointment is a prestigious one in that the association is "the elite among lawyers and among students who want to be lawyers."
Barwell also will consult with the magazine's staff editor on editorial content and other issues and serve as a judge for the division's law school newspaper contest.
"When I learned of the position and read the job description, I immediately knew the job was for me," said Barwell, who will also serve as a board member for the national association's Law Student Division. "I look forward to reaching out to law schools across the country to identify unique law students who have inspiring stories to tell."
"The stories I intend to explore during my tenure," he said, "will demonstrate qualities of perseverance, commitment, and dedication that, collectively, represent what the legal community is all about."