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More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

Maggie Jokinen

Graduation year: 2020

High school: Prior Lake High School

Hometown: Prior Lake, Minn.

Majors: Economics, political science

Minor: Mathematics

Activities: Phi Rho sorority, College Democrats, Augustana Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra, Augustana Legal Association, Political Science Student Advisory Council, Mortar Board Honor Society

Internships: Legal intern at Envestnet Financial Technologies and Genesis West; intern at Rock Island County Democratic Party

Post-grad plans: I will be pursuing my juris doctorate at Northwestern University's Pritzker School of Law.

Why Augustana?

I know this sounds very Gen-Z of me, but I chose Augustana because I got really good vibes from the campus. I was between Augie and one other similar school with a nearly identical pricetag, but what ended up being the deciding factor was that I just felt happier and more at home at Augustana.

Are you where you thought you'd be when you first came to campus?

I knew I wanted to go to law school from the start, but I think in the back of my mind, I always had some doubts about whether I'd actually make it without changing my mind or diverting to a less-stressful path. Looking back, I'm proud to see all I've accomplished, and I can happily say that I survived the LSAT, law school applications, graduating a year early and everything in between, and I'm more determined to pursue a career in law (and more confident that I will succeed) than ever before.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

I wouldn't be anywhere near attending a Top 10 law school without the incredible professors I've had the privilege to learn from in the past three years.

Dr. Felden, my first-year advisor and Honors program professor, provided a warm welcome to Augustana and an introduction to just how devoted Augustana professors are to their students.

Mamata Marmé reminded me of my love for math, which inspired me, in the truest spirit of liberal arts, to declare a math minor. My math professors challenged me and encouraged my pursuit of knowledge in a field I enjoyed, but was far from my original areas of study.

My fantastic major advisors, Dr. Dehnel and Dr. Chris Marmé, helped me channel my excitement for learning into new opportunities and knowledge.

Of course, I can't forget about on-campus family, the ladies of the Phi Rho sorority. My sisters gave me love and encouragement when I needed it most, and their success drives me to keep reaching toward my goals.

Peak experience?    

My acceptance to my dream law school is definitely what I'll look back on as one of the best things to come out of my time at Augustana. It certainly would not have been possible without the professors who supported me while I was studying for the LSAT and applying to schools or my friends cheering me on every step of the way.

What surprised you?    

How hard it is to leave. When I came to Augustana and made the plan to graduate in three years, I never considered how painful it would be to separate myself from Augustana a year early. I love this school, and it breaks my heart to leave, but I have a lot more learning to do at law school!

How did you use your Augie Choice?    

My Augie Choice funded my internship in Chicago. Because I'm out of state, I had to relocate and having the cost of rent covered allowed me to have an incredible summer working in law in Chicago!

What will you miss the most?  

I'll definitely miss the people the most. Augustana is a wonderful, welcoming and loving community, and the people I met there will always have a special place in my heart.

Advice for the Class of 2024?  

When it comes to picking a school, trust your intuition, your "gut feeling." I chose the school that just made me happier when I was there, and it was the best decision I could have made.

"Maggie came to Augustana with a plan to graduate in three years and go to Northwestern's law school. I thought, as her advisor, my role would be to bring some realism to this young woman. Well, it is three years later, and she will be going to Northwestern's law school next year. For all her energy and determination, she has been a joy to work with."

– Dr. David Dehnel, professor, political science