As president of OutLaws, 2L strives to create community at Moritz and beyond
By: Madeleine Thomas
The unique paths that led her fellow classmates to law school are what motivates 2L Lyndsey Andray as a student leader at Moritz and in her studies in national security law.
“Some people have been working for years, some people have come straight from undergrad, some people have families. Just the diversity in life experience here is amazing,” Andray said. “I think it brings a lot to the table, especially when you’re having a conversation in a class that gets at those different views.”
Andray spent several years in community college—and took a few years off afterward—before majoring in criminology at George Mason University, where she took classes in the university’s intelligence analysis curriculum. She hopes to work in national security or in an intelligence-related field one day. The bulk of her coursework revolves around international law, human rights law, and privacy law in addition to national security law.
“International law with Professor [Mohamed] Helal was a really cool introduction to the way we interact with the world, which is really important from an international security standpoint,” she said. “It’s interesting how national security has applications in all of these different areas.”
Last summer, Andray externed in the Department of Homeland Security’s Privacy Office through the college’s Washington, D.C. Program. In a few months’ time she will extern with the Judge Advocate General (JAG) corps at Fort Riley, Kansas. If all goes well, she’s considering applying to the JAG Corps after graduation.
“I think it would be a really cool way to actually use a lot of what I’m learning right now instead of going straight into an agency like the FBI,” she said.
Andray, whose parents and grandparents served in the military, is a fellow for the college’s Grassbaugh Veterans Project, which offers free legal assistance to veterans and their immediate families regarding issues like landlord-tenant issues, foreclosures and debt crises. Alumna Jenna C. Grassbaugh ’14, a veteran and Gold Star wife, founded the initiative in honor of her late husband, CPT Jonathan D. Grassbaugh, who was killed in Iraq in 2007.
As president of OutLaws—a student group dedicated to promoting legal issues and policy change that affect the LGBTQ+ community—Andray also hopes to cultivate a sense of community and intersectionality at the college that welcomes the unique experiences and diverse perspectives of many. At the end of the month, OutLaws and the Black Law Students Association (BLSA) are cosponsoring a community involvement day in which they are partnering with local animal shelters, food banks, homeless shelters, and senior living communities to help strengthen Mortiz’s relationship with the greater community at large.
“[OutLaws] is really for us to get to know each other and to be a support group for people in all stages—people who are coming out or people who have been out for years—to be a safe space at the college, and to work with a lot of other student groups like BLSA [Black Law Students Association] and ACS [American Constitution Society] in order to bring different perspectives to the table,” Andray said.