Iowa Gov. Terry E. Branstad visited Drake Law School on Aug. 20 to speak to first-year J.D. students during new student orientation.
“The great thing about a law degree is there are a lot of opportunities,” Branstad told the group of students. “The critical thinking skills and communication skills that you get in law school will open a lot of doors for you.”
Branstad, who is a 1974 graduate of Drake Law School, talked about how Drake formed his career.
“The decision to go to Drake was critically important because it’s in the capital city, and it made it possible for me to run for the legislature,” Branstad said. “So that’s why I chose to come here, and I can tell you I never regretted it. I had a great experience here.”
Branstad also introduced Michael Bousselot, a 2009 graduate of Drake Law School. Branstad told the story of how Bousselot was one of two students who started a movement on Facebook in 2009 for him to run for governor again. After Branstad was elected, Bousselot joined the governor’s staff, serving in various positions before being named Chief of Staff in July.
Branstad ended his talk by wishing the students well and telling them not to be too stressed during the first year.
“Good luck to all of you. This is going to open a lot of opportunities for you,” Branstad said.
Following his speech, Branstad took questions and posed for a group photo with the class.
Branstad will become the longest-serving governor in United States history in December. He served as Iowa’s governor from 1983-1999, and returned to the state capitol in 2011.
For more photos of the event, visit the Drake Law School Flickr page.