Admissions Dean Hones Eye for Outstanding Students
Talent. Diversity. Achievement. Experience. When Jannell Lundy Roberts, the senior assistant dean for admissions and enrollment services, looks over an admissions application to Loyola Law School, she looks for exceptionalism in many forms. She finds it in the myriad ways prospective students contribute to the community.
“We’re looking for people whose desires are consistent with our mission concerning social justice and serving under-served communities,” said Roberts, who joined Loyola in 2005 and also is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University. “We firmly believe that outstanding citizens become outstanding advocates.”
Roberts takes Loyola’s mission statement to heart: “The school’s social justice beliefs dovetail nicely with my perspective on how education is a great equalizer.” Roberts believes wholeheartedly in giving back and providing access to education, which is why she often seeks out potential candidates invested in social justice, working hard to help them find a place at LLS.
A former member of committees of the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) including LSAC’s Diversity Committee, Roberts actively participates in recruitment events, both on- and off-campus. She meets with groups of prospective students—ranging from 20 to 100 individuals—and tries to engage in as many one-on-one conversations as possible. She aims to help applicants understand that pursuing social justice isn’t a career-limiting decision.
“They should understand that they can be of service in any field, ranging from politics to business,” she said. Roberts emphasizes that Loyola offers a wide range of clinics and specialties, and that she and the admissions faculty are committed to assisting students with becoming “terrific advocates in their specific field of interest.” Faculty, senior staff and deans are all available to help prospective students carve out an educational path at Loyola that fits their individual social justice and legal goals.
For Roberts, a native New Yorker, education and social justice go hand-in-hand. As a first generation college-student, she notes that education is the great equalizer and “allows you to achieve the life you want no matter what your former circumstances.” And once you gain that education, you have the ability to help those in need. Loyola, she points out, is committed to the underserved, and she shares practical examples with potential applicants—such as Loyola’s pro-bono requirement—to showcase that the school fits those, like herself, who care for social justice.
“Our talk matches our walk,” she said.