Spotlight on Abbie Nordhagen, 2L

Abbie Joy Nordhagen, 2L
Undergrad: Gonzaga University
Major: Applied Communications
Q. Where are you from? 
A. Butte, Montana.

Q. How did you spend your summer? 
A. I attended the Blackstone Fellowship program, so I spent the two first weeks of my summer listening to scholars and discussing politics and religion with some of the nation’s brightest. For the internship portion of the fellowship, I worked for the Solicitor General in the Montana Attorney General’s office. I worked on some of the state’s hot button cases and wrote a criminal appellate brief to the Montana Supreme Court. I lived with my sister and was able to hang out with my nephews on a daily basis. If you are thinking about applying for Blackstone, the answer is unequivocally, “Yes.”

Q. What does becoming a lawyer mean to you? 
A. I look forward to a life of continual learning. Lawyers are always interacting with new information and new people, gaining valuable insights. I want to use this knowledge to better others.

Q. What do you wish you knew before you started law school? 
A. I would have liked to know that after a certain point of working, there are diminishing returns. I stayed up far too late and worked far too many hours on the weekend during my first year, and I’m confident that after the sixth hour of work, I accomplished nothing productive. Fall-2012-Abbie? Go have some fun.

Q. What surprised you most about Regent? 
A. The quality of the teachers. IL teachers were patient and available. Even as I’m moving beyond required classes, I’m discovering that the faculty is knowledgeable and truly cares about the students.

Q. How is law school different from your college experience? 
A. I enjoy the focused attention on the subject in which I’m interested. Additionally, I like knowing everyone in my class and most of the people in the school. Though my undergraduate school was not huge, being in a law school that has less than 400 people is an experience with its own set of challenges and joys.

Q. What is your favorite class so far and why? 
A. Though this may elicit groans from some, Appellate Advocacy has been, hands down, my favorite class. It is practical, and I am much more confident in my writing skills than I was two months ago. It is intense, but who said that “intense” is synonymous with bad?

Q. What kind of law do you hope to practice after graduation? 
A. I’ll provide a different answer depending on which classes I’m currently taking. So many areas sound interesting. However, I really like state government. I might like to work in an Attorney General’s office in the appellate department.

Q. How would you describe the group of your closest friends found here at Regent? 
A. Eclectic (and awesome). My mom recently sent me a funny quote: “Friendship is weird. You pick a human you’ve met and you’re like, ‘Yup, I like this one,’ and you just do stuff with them.” My friends range in age, place of origin, education, and political views. They challenge and support me. And they like to eat frozen yogurt. So that’s great.

Q. How do you prefer to study? 
A. I’m a bit of a schizophrenic studier. I don’t like to study in the same place often. Sometimes I am in the library, sometimes in the law review/moot court suite, and sometimes at different coffee shops. I prepare for class on my own. For finals, I always study with Sarah Decker, 2L and Stephen Cady, 2L. Those two make my life easier and much more fun.

Q. What is your favorite book of all time and why? 
A. The Little Prince, by Antoine De Saint-Exupery. See Andrew Cziok, Spotlight on Andrew (Drew) Cziok, 3L, Regent University School of Law: Photo & Video Blog, at Question 10, available at

Q. What is your favorite Bible verse? 
A. Romans 5:3-5. “We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” This is an outline—we law students know how much we like those—for how trials work for good in our lives. Whenever I feel like whining about a struggle, I remember this verse and it immediately takes me from suffering to hope. If I know hope is the final outcome, why not be hopeful now?

Q. If you could have lunch with any faculty member or administrator at Regent who would it be and why? 
A. Ms. Joe in the library. She has gotten me out of so many binds. She is amazingly patient and has the most generous heart. If you have not yet met her, march up to the third floor of the library. Right now. Seriously. Go.

Q. What kinds of extra-curricular activities are you involved with? 
A. Lots. I like to keep busy. I participate in a number of “co-curricular” activities: Moot Court, Law Review, and I am a Graduate Assistant for Professor Kohm. Additionally, I like to find a bit of time to do some reading for pleasure. I’m currently reading The Defining Decade by Meg Jay, courtesy of Chelsea Schlittenhart, 3L.

Q. If you had an entire weekend available, what would you do in the Hampton Roads area? 
A. Since I'm from landlocked Montana, I'm still like a four-year-old when I see the ocean. I'm more than happy to spend an entire day on one of the beaches reading, lounging, and wading. However, Norfolk is a city filled with a number of gems. If you spend some time exploring, Norfolk will not disappoint.

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