Featured Lawtina: Jaqueline Murillo Figueroa
My name is Jaquelinne Murillo Figueroa. I was born and raised in a small town in Guanajuato Mexico. I came to the United States when I was nine years old. At that time, I did not speak ANY English at all, but as time passed I learned the language and once again was at the top of my class. I grew up in North Carolina since then, my whole life I have been one of maximum 5 Latinos in a class. I am a first generation high school, college, and law school graduate. I graduated from North Carolina State University in 2014, after graduation I was a Teach for America Corps member in Texas from 2014-16. While at NCSU, I was involved in nearly all Latino organizations but my biggest accomplishment was to be a founder of the Epsilon Nu Chapter of Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Incorporated. As a TFA Corps member, I taught 5th grade bilingual Science in Southern Texas and while volunteering with The Young Center for Immigrant Children's Rights in Harlingen, TX, my passion for immigration law grew. So I applied to law school and came back to North Carolina for it. I graduated from Campbell Law in NC in 2019, while in Law School I was president of various organizations but my biggest pride was reviving and being president of The Hispanic Law Student Association for two years and leading HLSA to win Student Organization of the Year in 2018 for the first time in Campbell's History.
Now, I am a Removal Defense Immigration Attorney at Polanco Law, P.C. I represent individuals in removal proceedings in non detained immigration courts such as the Charlotte Immigration Court in North Carolina, San Antonio Immigration Court, Newark Immigration Court, Arlington Immigration Court and Miami Immigration Court. I also represent individuals that are detained at Stewart Detention Center. SDC is the largest immigration detention center east of the Misssissippi River. Most of my clients are Spanish speaking so my role is to explain what it means to be in removal proceedings, find a relief that individuals qualify for, attend court hearings with them, and work with individuals closely to better build their case.
As a first generation high school, college, and law school graduate I advice everyone that is considering becoming lawyer to reach out to anyone who can serve as a mentor, follow up on current mentor/mentee relationships, network, take on any leadership opportunity available. But overall, stay true to your roots, remember who you are, where you come from, and WHY you are doing what you are doing- siempre.