Full-Time MBA Alumnus Class of 2020
Hometown: Chesapeake, Virginia
Undergraduate University: East Carolina University
Class Year: 2013
Major/Minor: Bio Chemistry
Joint Degree: J.D./MBA
Internship: Hunton, Andrews, Kurth, LLP
As a legacy, Nick Thompson's familiarity with William & Mary began at birth.
"I grew up in Chesapeake, Virginia. Both of my parents are alumni of William & Mary, both undergraduate and law school. I grew up with William & Mary in my blood," he recounts. "My mom tells me that I attended my first William & Mary basketball game at three weeks old."
After completing his undergraduate studies ahead of schedule Nick capitalized on his remaining athletic eligibility and enrolled at William & Mary to play baseball and pursue medical school. He completed on semester of studies before the St. Louis Cardinals recognized his exceptional athleticism and drafted him in the 2014 First Year Player draft. Nick spent three years playing minor league baseball in the Cardinals organization before retiring in 2016 and reenrolling in law school at William & Mary.
"I didn't make the decision to do, or even apply to do, the MBA program until the beginning of the spring semester during my second year of law school. I did it in a unique way in a sense that most people in the joint J.D./MBA program do their first year of law school, the first year of the MBA program, and then a hybrid of classes between the business and law schools the final two years," he explains. "I felt that having two years of law school under my belt rounded me out a little better for the MBA program."
This path also meant that when Nick participated in the law firm recruitment cycle, he had more opportunities available to him since he was considered a 2L. Pursuing a joint degree also afforded him the opportunity to intern for an additional summer.
Through the William & Mary network, Nick secured a position as a Summer Associate with Pillsbury, Winthrop, Shaw, Pittman LLP at their Tysons Corner office in northern Virginia. While it was a good experience, he wanted to pursue opportunities closer to Richmond for the following summer. He was fortunate to secure a position with Hunton, Andrews, Kurth LLP with hopes of receiving a full-time offer.
"The goal is to become partner of the firm," he says. "Once I get into the practice of law, I think having the MBA and having taken classes here at the Mason School will make me more prepared to practice law and to better serve my clients. I'll be able to relate to clients more which is very important."
Nick describes the joint J.D./MBA program, specifically the MBA portion, as challenging but rewarding. He highlights the session or quarter structure as particularly engaging.
"It breaks it up and it goes by quickly which is nice because you're getting a little bit of a lot in a short amount of time," he says. "It lays a broad base for you to be able to speak the language, especially when I get into the business law arena. I think the program is collaborative which is enjoyable. You're able to learn from your peers and gather unique perspectives, especially from the international students. When you come to William & Mary and you meet the people who are here, you know it's the right place."