From the beginning of his law school career, André Sutton, a 2017 graduate of The John Marshall Law School in Chicago and recent viral sensation, knew he wanted to work for a government agency after law school. He also knew it would take hard work, but the effort paid off. Sutton has landed a job as an associate attorney with the Chicago Transit Authority.
As a student, Sutton was an Associate Justice for the John Marshall Moot Court Honors Executive Board, a Dean Fred F. Herzog Moot Court Competition semifinalist, a teaching assistant for multiple courses and an instructor for John Marshall’s Office of Diversity Academic Enhancement Program. In addition to his extracurricular activities, he completed internships at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Chief Counsel and the Chicago Park District Law Department.
“I met Andre prior to starting law school during his campus visit to John Marshall,” said Troy Riddle, John Marshall’s Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer. “I have always known him to be a very focused and determined young man who understands the importance of networking and making connections with people.”
Sutton was ready to make a difference. But like any law school graduate, as soon as graduation was over, he began agonizing over the bar exam. Even months after taking the test, Sutton still had concerns about whether he had passed. On the day he finally received his test results, Sutton knew he couldn’t read the results alone.
Sutton was the first person in his family to go to college, let alone law school. His entire family is from Jamaica, but he grew up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Florida.
“I received the email around 11 a.m., but I waited until 5:30 p.m. so I could open it with my parents,” Sutton said. “They’ve done so much for me, they deserved to enjoy the moment, too.”
Sutton happened to film the moment he opened the email and read aloud that he passed. In the video, which he posted online, his parents can be seen erupting with joy after reading the good news. CBS News covered Sutton’s story first, helping to make the video viral, and he has since been featured on USA Today, the Today Show with Hoda Kotb and the Steve Harvey Show. The video has amassed more than six million views.
Despite all of the elation, passing the bar was only the first step. Sutton still needed to find a job. When he saw the posting online for a position with the Chicago Transit Authority, he knew he had to go for it. This was the opportunity he was waiting for.
Sutton immediately scheduled an appointment with his Career Services counselor and met with him for help revising his resume and polishing his interview skills. Soon after interviewing, Sutton found out he landed the job.
“I am so thrilled to start working at one of Chicago’s premier government agencies,” Sutton said. “I look forward to making my mark in the legal community and giving back to all those who helped me get this far.”