DePaul’s mission of social justice resonates on a personal level with Votey Cheav (JD ’14) whose parents survived the Cambodian genocide in the 1970s. “Their childhood was ripped from them, but education was always important to them,” she explained. “My parents didn’t have the opportunity to get as far as I did, so they are living vicariously through me.”
Cheav made the most of her College of Law experience, acting as managing editor of lead articles for the Business and Commercial Law Journal, serving as vice president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association and participating in American Bar Association negotiation competitions.
Cheav also was a recipient of a 2012 Jaharis Family Foundation scholarship. “When I got the scholarship letter, I was very surprised and very happy,” said Cheav. “It was nice. I mean, that’s like a lottery letter. It was nice.” Cheav said she was attracted to the diversity at the law school and the market in Chicago.
“Where I came from, you don’t meet people who have lived a totally different life than yourself, and I crave that,” she explained. “If everyone is the same it doesn’t make for a rich conversation inside the classroom and outside of it too, so [that was] a big factor for coming here.” Currently, she works for a boutique law firm in Chicago. “I’m hoping that what I’ve learned and cultivated during my experience at DePaul is something that I can foster into a real, meaningful legal career,” she said. After graduation, Cheav hopes to be a positive influence in Chicago’s legal community.