Olivia Bainbridge finds the balance in business law

Contact: Amy Coughenour

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—On the field, junior Olivia Bainbridge learned how to keep her eye on the goal. Coming to Western Michigan University, she transferred those skills to her studies as a business law major. Combining her interests in athletics with discourse and business, she’s going to flourish as a corporate attorney after law school. Until then, Olivia is building her own path to success.  

As a founding member and president of the newly reformed Business Law Society on campus, she is leaving her mark and trailblazing as a student leader.  

“Re-establishing the organization was an immense amount of work, but I know that it is going to be worth it for business law students. This organization has given me the opportunity to network with those in the same field as me, both academically and beyond the classroom,” she says. 

Olivia Bainbridge wearing a red shirt against a gray backgroundWhile honing in her leadership skills on campus, ones that will be necessary when assisting different industries in navigating the legal world, Bainbridge is fine-tuning her craft in many ways. 

“As a business student at WMU, I’m not just taking business classes; I’m preparing for interviews, attending career fairs, meeting employers, getting internships, exploring jobs, joining clubs and creating connections. I personally feel that many business students will be entering the professional world incredibly prepared,” she says

Preparing for law school is no easy task. Hours of studying, getting ahead and gaining experience are crucial to a student’s success. Despite the challenges, Bainbridge is excited to be put to the test.

“Being able to major in a law program within undergrad gives me the opportunity to be exposed to concepts that many students will not see until they are in law school. The program allows me to be better prepared to enter law school and, ultimately, my future career,” she says.

With these accomplishments under her belt, Bainbridge can dedicate her capabilities and interests to her future career. The versatility and competitiveness of law keeps her motivated. There’s always a different interest to pursue.

“What excites me most for business law is the diversity in the field, as well as the ability to protect the integrity of others,” says Bainbridge. “There are thousands of companies to represent, all within their own respective fields, such as athletic companies, clothing companies or entertainment companies. I can take my knowledge of law and business and apply it to a field that I have an interest in—particularly sports. I grew up an athlete, and I love sports in general, so being able to represent and practice in such a field would be very captivating work.” 

Implementing a routine in her life has helped Bainbridge juggle all her various projects and endeavors. When she’s not shaking hands and leaving a positive first impression with everyone she networks with or finding different ways to improve the student organizations she’s involved in, she is figuring out how to best balance it all.   

“A pivotal piece of advice that I would offer to others is to stay disciplined. It can be tempting to veer off your potential trajectory in college, however, there needs to be a balance. This will decrease procrastination and offer more free time as well as less stress," she says. "Create a balanced routine and find joy in what you’re doing!”

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