This is the first in a series of profiles of students from the Harvard Law School Class of 2017.
In his work for the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau, Mario Nguyên ’17 often represented survivors of domestic violence. While meeting with him, one woman, crying, confided that she worried her children would be damaged forever by the violence they had seen.
Nguyên reassured her that he thought her kids would turn out just fine. It wasn’t an empty platitude. He understood very well that kids who experienced domestic violence could become successful. And his client understood that too when he told her he was living proof.
As he prepares to graduate, Nguyên can stand as an example as someone who has overcome hardship and doubt, who has achieved more than he ever thought possible and plans to achieve much more. He will soon begin a job at a firm in his native Texas, with a goal of using his legal skills to bring about systemic change to benefit disadvantaged and marginalized people.
In addition to his work in the Legal Aid Bureau, where he also handled juvenile immigration cases, Nguyên founded the Supero Law Students Association at HLS, which supports low-income and first-generation college students like him. He participated in national moot court competitions on immigration and LGBT issues, and in HLS Lambda. His activities reflected life experiences that have given him a different perspective than most students at HLS, he says.