Tovah Singleton - Legal Assistant and All-Washington Academic Team
Whether it's studying at home, interning at a law firm, or volunteering to help juveniles in the court system, Tovah stands out. As Legal Assistant instructor Karin Kelley notes, "Tovah is brilliant."
The Tacoma native worked as an international freight forwarding manager until she broke her foot, ending her career. She had always wanted to become a lawyer, so she decided to take this opportunity to research colleges and pursue her dream.
"I selected Bates because of the success in placing students in the legal field after graduation," says Tovah, who began the program in November 2011.
In addition to carrying 32 credits in a quarter, Tovah is active in the college's Associated Student Government, serving as a club and event coordinator, where she helps plan and organize events for the college and various student clubs. Outside of Bates, Tovah volunteers as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), assuring the safety and well-being of children in the state's care as their cases progress through the court system. She also interns for criminal law attorney Harry Steinmetz, preparing legal documents for court cases, meeting with new clients, assisting Mr. Steinmetz, and performing daily office manager tasks.
So, what drives Tovah?
"At the age of four, I was diagnosed with juvenile onset diabetes, and from a young age, I have learned the responsibility that is required to care for an illness like diabetes," Tovah says. "I have a real passion for people. I love to be involved in as many things as possible, and I always take the time to learn as much as I can from others."
About her experience as a CASA, Tovah enjoys being a voice for abused and neglected children. "Volunteering my time working with these children has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done in my life. It has taught me that money will never be my motivation for working, that motivation for me will only come when I know I can make a difference in another person's life," she says.
Tovah recalls a quote by poet and author C. JoyBell C., "The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open."
"I tend to jump right into every aspect of my life with a positive attitude and a smile on my face," says Tovah. "With the opportunity to utilize my education and fulfill my passion of the legal field at the same time, what a better way to become exposed and throw myself out into the open."
And these are just a few of the ways that Tovah stands out.