Stella Ninh Thi Vu McMillan

J.D. Candidate

University of Illinois Chicago School of Law

How did you learn about JTB? 

I learned about JTB through Justice Ann Claire Williams.

What sparked your interest in the law?

Growing up on the west side of Chicago, I saw many injustices happening to my people through the systems of voting, trial/sentencing, food deserts, immigration, etc. I was passionate about being an advocate and being a voice for my community, but I did not know how. Then, in high school, I took an elective class Law. We had an internal school Mock Trial. I fell in love with litigation.    Then, I was selected to be on my school’s team and compete in the City Wide Mock Trial Competition where we got 1st place. Then, I was selected to represent my school in the Individual City-Wide Mock Trial Competition where I received 1st place. I realized what my passion was and that I wanted to pursue law.

What was your experience like and what was your favorite part about volunteering with JTB?

I enjoy helping the next generation of future attorneys. I did not receive much guidance on my journey getting into law school as an immigrant and first generation law student, but I know it does not have to be that way.

Why are you passionate about JTB’s mission?

I am passionate about JTB’s mission as a woman of color, with a disability, immigrant, I have faced many obstacles. encourage students of color and from other underrepresented groups to pursue career and leadership opportunities. I believe it is important for the legal profession in which lawyers and judges reflect the backgrounds and perspectives of the populations they serve.

What advice do you have for our scholars?

My advice would be your journey is not linear to everyone else’s. You are in your own lane, own race, own journey. Be proud of how far you’ve come and believe in how far you will accomplish.

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