Law student is member of the Women's Law Caucus


Photo courtesy of Wayne Law School

By Sheila Pursglove
Legal News   

In undergrad, Mari Yokhana took an argumentation and debate course that forced her to think on her feet during a heated debate.

“During the moments I had to think quickly, I felt an incredible rush and when the debate was over, I was able to envision myself as a lawyer,” she says.

Yokhana earned her undergrad degree in psychology from Wayne State University before staying with WSU to study law.

“The study of psychology drew me in because it’s all around us and it helped me learn about others, as well as myself,” she says. “I’ve always been intrigued by the human mind and studying the underlying reasons of human behavior was always enjoyable. Having a background in psychology definitely helps me in my legal career because both fields require the study of why people do what they do.”

Now a rising 2L at Wayne Law School, Yokhana relishes the legal challenge that comes with effective persuasion, and the opportunity to advocate for individuals and the community using an analytical approach to problem solving.

“I want to be the voice for those who cannot raise theirs,” she says.

In the upcoming school year, she will be a member of Moot Court and The Journal of Law in Society, and also serves as a student ambassador.

“It gives me the chance to ease the nerves of incoming students,” she says. “It’s a great feeling to comfort people using my own experiences since I was in their shoes not long ago.”

She finds the Wolverine Bar Association offers unique opportunities to make connections, as does the Women’s Law Caucus.

“I enjoy its attorney-student mentor program and the encouragement practicing women give to Wayne Law students,” she says. “Whether it’s a professional event or a social gathering, there’s always a chance to make connections and create positive relationships at Wayne Law.”

Yokhana, who hopes to gain experience in a law firm, corporation, or as a judicial clerk, just wrapped up an internship for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan.

“It’s opened my eyes to the wonderful career as a prosecutor, which is a career I consider possibly pursuing,” she says. “My ultimate career goal is to seek the truth in every case and put my clients in the best position they can be.” 

Born in Valencia, Spain of Chaldean parents, Yokhana – who is fluent in English and Arabic – was an infant when her family moved to Michigan, where her father started an electrical engineering company. A resident of Sterling Heights, she appreciates the opportunities that are developing in the greater Detroit area.

“Within years Detroit has expanded its versatility and its population has been booming,” she says.

When not studying or working, she enjoys spending time with her parents and three older brothers, family and friends.

“I have eight nieces and nephews who are a joy to be around,” she says.