Posted: December 9th, 2019
Alex Prunka (JD ’20) attributes the supportive community of faculty and students as the core of his success at Wake Forest Law.
Where do you call home?
Where did you study for your undergraduate degree?
East Carolina University
Where did you work during your summers in law school?
I spent the first half of my 1L summer interning for Judge Phil Berger Jr. at the North Carolina Court of Appeals, and the second half clerking at Crumpler Freedman Parker and Witt (CFPW) in Winston-Salem. After completing my 1L summer, I have continued to clerk with CFPW during the school year. For my 2L summer, I worked at Jones Day in Cleveland, Ohio. I have also joined the Appellate Advocacy Clinic for my 3L year. I have enjoyed working in litigation, particularly appellate litigation. I find the work interesting because I am always learning, and I enjoy constructing detailed arguments about often-narrow legal issues.
Why did you decide to attend Wake Forest Law?
I wanted to attend law school in N.C., and when I visited Wake Forest’s campus for an admitted students day, I found an incredibly welcoming community with a talented faculty.
Describe the Wake Forest community.
The Wake Forest community is collegial and intellectually stimulating. There is adequate academic support at the law school both through official tutoring and the strong tradition of forming peer study groups early on. I have had the pleasure of studying with my friends Caroline, Roecker, and Sarahanne since first-semester 1L year, and I attribute any level of success I might have to their guidance and support.
What is your most memorable experience during law school so far?
I will never forget the terror of being cold-called by Professor Jonathan Cardi during my first-year torts class about an obscure issue in a dissenting opinion. This was memorable because it both taught me to appreciate the details, and allowed me to realize that there is absolutely no shame in being wrong if you learn from it.
What do you wish you’d known during your 1L year?
Law school is something like a game. Understanding how the game works in terms of faculty expectations, grading, exams, and more goes a very long way. An upperclassman mentor can be very helpful with this.
Do you have a faculty mentor?
I have developed great relationships with a number of professors, but Professor Russell Gold has been a critical mentor to me. He taught my legal writing classes in my first and second years of law school and has helped me develop what is arguably the most applicable skill I will use as a lawyer. In addition, he is always willing to talk about anything— personal, school, or professional.
What do you do for fun in Winston-Salem when you aren’t studying?
I enjoy spending time with my fiancée Kelsie and walking our Goldendoodles, Ringo and Wrigley, around local parks and greenways. I also enjoy trying new foods and beers with our terrific restaurant and brewery scene.
Where do you want your law degree to take you?
I want to practice as a litigator in Cleveland, with a specialty in product liability and appellate litigation. One day, I hope to be a judge if the circumstances are right.