Hometown: Marysville-Yuba City, California
Undergraduate degree: University of California, Irvine, BA, Criminology, Law & Society
For some students, becoming a lawyer is a choice they arrive at after several years of sorting through different educational options. For Victoria L. Baiza, it felt more like destiny.
From her earliest childhood, she has been compelled to help those who seemed unable to help themselves, and she has always felt motivated to try to promote justice-a desire that has led her to participate in student government and organizations throughout her student years. As she matured, she began to see that a law degree could be a powerful tool in helping those most in need.
"Injustice is what motivated me to attend law school," said Baiza. "Being a legal servant would provide me with the tools to advocate for my people, for minorities."
Baiza, who is from the Marysville-Yuba City area and who graduated from UC Irvine with a degree in Criminology in 2006, found that King Hall was a perfect fit for her ambitions. "In choosing my career path I wanted to attend a school that would expose me to the process of successfully helping the underrepresented, and UC Davis School of Law provided the key with its excellent clinical programs."
Among her most important experiences at King Hall, Baiza said, has been her work with the Family Protection and Legal Assistance Clinic, representing victims of domestic violence who otherwise could not afford legal aid. "I have to say having my own clients gives me a rush," said Baiza. "To hear and speak to victims of domestic violence enhances and promotes my desire to defend. The clinical program here is amazing, and I hope to explore other clinics as well during my tenure at King Hall."
In addition to her work with the Family Protection Clinic, Baiza has served as a mentor with the King Hall Outreach Program, as a board member with the ACLU of King Hall and the La Raza Law Students Association, and a member of the King Hall Legal Foundation. Through it all, she has found that the Law School's reputation as a nurturing, cooperative environment is well-earned.
"UC Davis School of Law is unique, as you will hear time and time again," she said. "The environment is safe and providing."