Student Spotlight: Madison Scarfaro
Student Profile: Madison Scarfaro
Madison Scarfaro moved to Long Island from Pennsylvania to attend Touro Law. She has just completed her first year of law school and is fulfilling a lifelong dream of attending law school to advocate for the underserved.
What inspired you to attend law school?
I have always known that I wanted to go to law school. I have always been interested in the criminal justice system, politics, and the law. Various experiences have fueled my passion for going to law school throughout my life including: my mom campaigning to be a judge, participating in the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program, an internship with my local District Attorney’s office, working for a victims’ rights advocacy group, and seeing first-hand how individuals are treated in our criminal justice system. Each of these experiences inspired me to get into the legal field so that I would be able to use my position to make a change and help those who are underserved.
Why did you decide to enroll at Touro Law Center?
I went to a smaller undergraduate school, and I loved that I was able to meet so many people, make great friends, and have strong relationships with my professors during (and after) my time there. I thought that Touro Law Center would give me a similar experience – and I was definitely right. I knew Touro would provide me with a good learning experience and offer opportunities to get involved and make connections with my professors and others on campus. I have never lived outside of Pennsylvania, so that was also something that I thought could be exciting. Not to mention, I love the beach!
How was the first year of law school? Favorite class or professor?
My first year of law school flew by. As stressful as parts of it were, especially moving to a new state, it proved to be an amazing year. I learned a lot, made great friends, made great relationships with professors and others, and began working for Breaking Barriers, which has been such a rewarding experience so far. I think I am lucky to say that I really liked all of the professors I had in my first year. Each class was unique and I enjoyed each of my professors and having class with them. My favorite experience has been working pro bono for Breaking Barriers and having my first hearing (and winning it for our client who was so deserving!).
Tell us about your summer externship? Why are you excited about it?
My summer externship is with Roc Nation Sports in New York City. I am really lucky to have the opportunity to work at Roc and learn the ins and outs of what it is like working in the field of sports law. I was a college athlete, coached after college, and also have friends that are athletes - so sports is a field that I am definitely passionate about. I think the most important thing that I want to learn is how to keep the athlete’s best interest in mind when negotiating deals and contracts. A lot of athletes coming into the professional world are young, so it is critical for them to have good representation by someone who will always make sure to do what is best for them. I obtained this externship because a close friend of mine plays football in the NFL. I met his agent several times throughout his career and would always talk to her at events and functions about eventually going to law school. Once I began taking classes at Touro Law, we would talk about my journey throughout my first year. She works at Roc Nation - which is how I was able to make the connection to obtain the externship.
What do you hope to get out of it?
I hope to develop my negotiation and contract skills while learning to keep my client’s best interest in mind. I want to advance my research and writing skills while gaining hands-on experience in the sports law world. I look forward to participating in negotiations and meetings during my time at Roc. I also hope to make relationships with those that work there that will last past my externship and throughout my career.
What are your career aspirations after graduation?
I am very passionate about our criminal justice system and criminal law in general. I know this is something that I want to pursue no matter what I choose to do after passing the bar, whether it be actually working in the area of criminal law or doing pro bono work or working alongside with criminal justice organizations. I am also very interested in sports law, enjoy reading contracts, and am open to various areas of law!
What advice would you give to a prospective law student?
I would say that I know how stressful law school can be, especially when you are first starting. My advice is to keep working as hard as you can and get involved as much as possible. If you are interested in something, learn about it, ask about it, and see how you can get involved. There is so much to learn and do throughout law school and we only get this opportunity once. I would also highly recommend getting involved in some kind of pro bono work because it truly gives you real life experience of what it is like to be a lawyer!