Chip Habegger’s experience in the family lumber business ignited an interest in entrepreneurship. Business-related courses at Indiana Law steered him into an in-house career at a multinational consumer products company.
Before coming to the Law School: I fulfilled a lifelong dream by working in New York City, thanks to contacts a Wabash College professor had helped me make. Then I lived in Washington, DC, where I worked for Penske Truck Leasing, before going back home to Berne, Indiana, to help out in our family’s lumber business. My father’s expertise is in engineering and design; I helped with the analytical side of the business.
Why I chose Indiana Law: I applied to 16 law schools, from California to Connecticut, and from Minnesota to Louisiana. My visitation day at IU clinched it for me. The people were friendly and welcoming, and the atmosphere was collegial. That’s proven to be the case throughout my three years here. If I have to miss class for a day, my friends e-mail me their notes even before I ask them to. The attitude has always been, “Here, let me help you.” If a professor is meeting with a student and you’re waiting in the hall, most of the time you’re invited into the discussion so you and the other student can learn from each other’s questions.
Favorite courses: Professor Broughman’s corporate finance class was great. He used a business-school textbook, which really helped tie together business and legal principles. Professor Nagy’s securities litigation class was excellent, too. She helped us see issues from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s point of view, then turned the tables so we could consider our responses on behalf of the client. I participated in the Elmore Entrepreneurship Law Clinic, where we worked on real solutions for real clients. The combination of intellectual and practical experiences will be a big help to me in my job in the in-house legal department of Procter & Gamble.
On life in Bloomington: Bloomington is a place where you can become integrated into three communities: the Law School, the university, and the city itself. I play basketball every Friday with other law students, swim, and go to the rock-climbing gym—all of which have helped me meet students from other classes. Generous alumni, such as John Seddelmeyer and Milt Stewart, have made it possible for me to attend opera performances and receptions at the Art Museum. And the School’s proximity to the town square has introduced me to the Bloomington arts scene.
When looking at law schools: The most important thing to keep in mind is whether you feel comfortable with atmosphere of the students at the school. You’re going to be there three years, and you won’t be there by yourself. Your classmates will soon become your friends and later become your network. Start building those relationships early.