Amanda Tyler ’91
Shannon C. Turner Professor of Law, University of California,
Berkeley School of Law
“To me, being a Lancer means serving others. When I look back, what stands out to me from Saint Francis was the emphasis on going into the community and making a valuable contribution to lift others up. I remember visiting Villa Siena Senior Community next door and Agnews Developmental Center. Service was something that pervaded every aspect of my experience. It wasn’t just about going to class or being on a team or something we did to check a box.
“Service underscores the importance of having an outward-looking perspective in your life and remembering you are part of something bigger. I’ve coached youth soccer, mentored my law students and undergraduate students and performed pro bono legal work and consulting for people who can’t afford legal services. Many of the things I’ve done highlight for me how fulfillment and happiness come from outside, in terms of connecting with others and using your talents to benefit others.
“Being a Lancer also means being intellectually curious. I had a number of teachers whose passion for teaching and education was infectious, and for someone who became a teacher herself, they showed me how rewarding being a teacher could be. I’ve been fortunate in my life to have had at every level of education really exceptional teachers on whose teaching I model my own. I remember as particularly excellent Mr. Christensen, my AP English teacher, and Mr. Yamamoto, my chemistry teacher. I also had Brother Alfred, who I had as a freshman for World Civilizations. He was intense and demanding and wanted students to show up every day with their very best. By the time I went to law school, where most of my professors employed the Socratic method, I felt ready because I survived Brother Alfred’s class.
“In high school, you’re finding out who you are and beginning to define who you will be. Being in an environment that promotes looking beyond yourself and thinking about your place in your community is hugely important and significant for that journey.”