Health advocate Wayne Law student serves as president of If/When/How

By Sheila Pursglove

Legal News

When Kristina Gregerson took up her studies at Wayne Law School, she was disappointed to find a Law Students for Life organization, but no Law Students for Reproductive Justice.

It's something I'm incredibly passionate about," she explains. "I was lucky enough to take a class 'Reproductive Justice' my last semester at the University of Michigan, taught by Ed Goldman, who manages the U-M Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology's program on sexual rights and reproductive justice. His class taught me there was so much more that needs to be done in this arena."

That class set Gregerson on the path to become president of Wayne Law's If/When/ How formerly Law Students for Reproductive Justice her favorite law school activity to date.

"The ease with which I was able to help get this organization off the ground again really shows that Wayne Law wants its students to not only get a great education, but also be involved in extracurricular activities," she says.

"I enjoy working with my amazing If/When/How e-board and planning speaker events that bring wonderful voices in the reproductive justice community to Wayne Law."

As a health center advocate for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, Gregerson talks to patient advocates about why Planned Parenthood's services are important.

"I help them tell their stories and fill out petition cards, which Planned Parenthood brings to Lansing when the Michigan Legislature introduces anti-reproductive health and anti-woman legislation," she says. "These stories and petition cards do a great job of demonstrating the need for Planned Parenthood's services and the impact Planned Parenthood has on real people's lives."

Gregerson works hard to bridge If/When/How and Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan together by planning events that include Planned Parenthood, such as last year's drive that collected thousands of feminine hygiene items for homeless women in the Detroit area.

Gregerson, who will be involved with the Law Review and the Mock Trial Team this coming year, has thrown herself into several other law school activities including the Women's Law Caucus and Student Board of Governors.

"I love that the Women's Law Caucus gives me the opportunity to meet women who have successfully navigated Wayne Law and can help mentor me through law school," she says. "For me, the best part of being a Governor at Large is the opportunity to have a voice at Wayne Law. Participating on the Student Board of Governors is the best way to effect change."

After graduation Gregerson hopes to work as a law clerk to a judge, an interest sparked by this summer's externship with Judith Levy, a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District in Michigan. The experience provided a behind-the-scenes look and an opportunity to test the waters of litigation. After observing numerous scheduling and status conferences, telephonic discovery disputes, plea and sentencing hearings, and much more, her interest in all stages of litigation has grown even stronger.

"Judge Levy is one of the nicest people I've ever met and went above and beyond to make sure I had a great experience working for her," she says. "I wrote memos in a variety of legal areas, drafted an opinion, and attended various court proceedings. My writing has improved dramatically since the beginning of the summer, thanks in large part to the editing and constructive criticism provided by Judge Levy's three law clerks, Jesse, Daniel, and Robin. I'm much more confident in my legal abilities after spending the summer in Judge Levy's chambers."

Gregerson set her sights on law back in her teens. A love of history and political science in high school led her to major in those subjects at U-M which in turn led her to law school.

The summer after her U-M sophomore year she had the opportunity to intern for a Member of Parliament in Ottawa and enjoyed the experience north of the border so much that she wanted to return to the "Land of the Maple Leaf." Awarded a grant from the U-M Program in International and Comparative Studies' for an Arctic internship, Gregerson did research for a professor at the Centre for Military and Strategic Studies in Calgary, on theoretical approaches to Arctic study and current security aims of the U.S. and Canada in the Arctic.

"Both internships made me a better researcher and writer," she says.

A native of Romulus and graduate of Wayne Memorial High School, Gregerson makes her home in Garden City with her husband Oliver, an Information Resources Assistant Senior at the U-M Art, Architecture and Engineering Library, and with three cats and a dog.

In her leisure time, she enjoys reading and watching musicals.

"I'm currently obsessed with 'Hamilton,'" she says.

Published: Fri, Aug 26, 2016