Abigail Grieve, Class of 2022

1. Tell us about yourself.
My name is Abigail Grieve, and I am a 3L at SMU Dedman School of Law. I am from New Braunfels, Texas, and attended Texas Christian University for undergrad, where I graduated in 2019 with a B.S. in Psychology and minors in political science and criminal justice. I enjoy reading novels and collecting books, TCU football (go frogs!), baking and trying new restaurants (mostly sushi), and I have two cats named Georgia and Friday.

2. Why did you decide to come to SMU Law?
I think I have a very typical story of being a stubborn little kid with my parents telling me that I could argue with a rock and should be a lawyer when I grow up; as such law school has been a consideration of mine since around 7th grade. However, when I started at TCU, I was a neuroscience major on the pre-med track and thought that I wanted to attend medical school and maybe become a clinical psychologist—organic chemistry quickly changed my mind on that. Having already started my minors in criminal justice and political science, I knew that those courses were a much better fit for me and made the change to pre-law. I really loved the idea of being a professional problem solver and learning all the nitty-gritty aspects of the law while still being able to be creative in developing a solution towards the best outcome for a client. When choosing to come to SMU, I have grown up in Texas and lived in Fort Worth during undergrad, so staying in Texas was always a consideration; SMU felt home in the way TCU did and I was very excited to move to Dallas.

3. What has been your favorite class and why?
I absolutely loved Contracts I and II with Professor Rogers. I really enjoyed the topic and the process of considering the various aspects of making, breaking, and terminating a contract from a legal perspective. But really, after spending a year with my section and Professor Rogers, the class was just fun.

4. When you are not in school or studying, what do you do for fun?
I really enjoy reading thriller/mystery and fantasy novels and have since I was a young. As I got older, my love of books has also grown into cultivating my personal library and book-collecting, as I currently own about 900 books. A goal of mine is to have a library room in my home someday.

5. What extracurricular activities have you enjoyed most and why? (SBA, moot court, etc.).
I currently serve as President of Family Law Association, where I have been a member since 1L and served on the Exec Board last year. Family law isn’t a very common interest at SMU, and I really enjoy getting to be part of an organization of students passionate about the practice area. I am looking forward to this year and holding more events and networking with family law practitioners in DFW.

I am also an Articles Editor for SMU Law Review Association, and last year I wrote my comment on a family law topic. I really enjoyed getting to spend many months diving deep into one topic and getting to write about something I was passionate about.

6. How has law school challenged you most?
The most challenging part of my law school experience has honestly been being at home this past year and a half with the COVID-19 restrictions. Having to completely change course to online school was difficult for me as I really need a different environment for learning as compared to my home where I relax, and I think re-wiring my thinking to doing both in one space took some adjusting. It was strange to be at my kitchen table for hours on end in class; I got distracted easier and found myself looking at my phone or going to make a snack or thinking about what needed to be tidied up in my house. It was a learning experience for me, and I definitely know that being in a classroom or workplace and interacting with other people every day is where I thrive. I am very happy to be back on campus this year!

7. What has been your most memorable law school moment so far?
My most memorable moment of law school so far was getting the call that I had written-on to SMU Law Review. We waited about a month-and-a-half between completing the write-on competition and finding out if we made a law review, and it was nerve-wracking. It was a brand-new skill, and I had no idea if I was any good at it since write-on was the first time I had completed an editing process like that, and I spent the entire summer telling myself that it was okay if I didn’t write-on to any of the law reviews. So, when I picked up the phone the night calls went out and was congratulated on making SMU Law Review, I was shocked and excited, and know I will always remember every detail of that moment.

8. What do you plan to do post-graduation?
I am very interested in practicing family law after graduation, and am specifically interested in complex asset division and the ways that different areas of the law such as business and tax law affect marital division of assets and debts.

9. Have you had any important mentors during law school? If so, who?
Professor Leatherberry has been a mentor to me over this past year as she advised me throughout my law review comment writing process and provided great insight and advice as to the job search process both for summers and post-grad. I am very grateful to have found a professor who I can connect with!