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Celebrating the Class of 2017: Tristyn English- Beckwith 

image of TrystanMajor: Political Communications, Moody School of Communication

Programs and activities: DiscoverLaw.org PLUS, Longhorn Center for Academic Excellence (LCAE); Gateway Scholars, LCAE; Women of Excellence; Student Leadership Initiative

Law school bound…Since arriving to UT Austin, English- Beckwith never wavered from the law school path. When she learned about the five-week DiscoverLaw.org PLUS program, she jumped at the chance to learn more about law school and life after the bar exam. “Discover Law really put me in a good position to accomplish what I want to do in the future. The biggest benefit was the application fee waivers for the LSAT. That really opened up a lot of doors for me.”

A fortunate dilemma…Recently accepted into two top law schools, English- Beckwith had a tough decision to make. Should she attend UC Berkeley or the University of Southern California? Though she couldn’t go wrong with either school, she decided to take USC up on its generous scholarship offer and stay close to the bright lights of Hollywood. “I want to work in entertainment law, so it makes more sense to stay close to industry professionals in LA.”

The sky’s the limit…Independent by nature, English- Beckwith is excited to board a one-way flight to California and possibly stay there indefinitely. After working her way up the totem pole, she envisions herself in a large corner office spearheading a legal team at a major TV network. “Ten years from now I hope to be working at a big network like NBC studios. Ultimately I want to become and executive director of legal affairs.”

Life in the fast lane…At age 21, English- Beckwith will be among the youngest graduate students in her classes this fall. She earned her associate’s degree in high school, which put her on the fast track in college. “I came in with the class of 2018, so it’s a little weird for me to be graduating ahead of my friends. I missed having a senior year, but in the long run it will all pay off.”

Going local…Although she skipped a full year at UT Austin, English-Beckwith did get to take advantage of a trip of a lifetime. As a Gateway Scholar, she had the unique opportunity to travel abroad in Cape Town, South Africa with a large, diverse group of students. While overseas, she spearheaded a sustainable business plan for women in the Vygrond Township and took classes at the local university. Her favorite activity, however, was veering off the beaten path. “I had the most fun going off on my own to less touristy places like local coffee shops where I felt like a local.”

Words of wisdom for undergrads… “Take your time and enjoy the experience and everything will fall into place. Focus not just on academics, but also on making connections with people who will support you and believe in you.”