Elise Faust: High School Teacher to Law Student

Elise Faust is a first-year law student at BYU Law School. Before coming to BYU Law, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in History and a minor in English at BYU.  She then followed her love of learning to Columbia University where she earned her Master’s degree in Social Science teaching.

After attending Columbia, Elise served an LDS mission in the Netherlands. When she got back, she taught English and History for one year in Washington D.C., two years in Southern California, and three years at an independent school in New York on Staten Island.

Teaching and learning are integral parts of Faust’s life. “When I was in fourth grade, I wanted to be a history teacher; that’s what I wanted to do with my life. I did my undergrad as quickly as possible. I was 21 when I finished my Master’s program and I was so excited to teach the world history,” she said.

Faust enjoyed the years she spent teaching because of her passion for learning. “I think one of the exciting things about teaching for me was that you learn new things everyday, whether you’re learning new material because you need to teach it, or because you are getting into more depth in something,” she said. “Really, this is where I think I learned the most: just learning from my students and how they interact with each other, and from that collective shared energy we have in the class.”

Although she loved teaching, Faust decided to leave her teaching position to come to law school because she saw it as another way to expand her mind. “I love learning and I was looking for a new intellectual challenge,” she said. As she pondered where to attend law school, BYU stuck out for several different reasons.

“The people…I met who were from the law school, like Dean Rasband and Dean Sorenson—I was just so impressed by their intelligence and their integrity, and I thought ‘that is the kind of atmosphere that I want to have when I am in law school,’” she said.

Now that she’s had a taste of the law school experience, Faust wants other students to know that law school is possible. “It’s doable,” she said. “Really, it’s not so bad. You can do it!”

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