The Valpo Core Reader

Document Type

Work and Vocation Essay

Publication Date



Desire for a positive change is an ideal aspiration for which every lawyer should strive. Aspirations often come from observing an injustice within the legal system to which all are bound to. In the case of Penelope Andrews, an Attorney and Professor in the area of international human rights and law, she not only observed injustice but at times was a victim herself. Her childhood was spent in South Africa during apartheid and as a woman of color she faced great discrimination. Eventually, with her dangerous involvement in public activism and the desire to have the tools to fight apartheid in the best way possible, she decided to leave South Africa for the United States. Since then she has practiced and taught law all over the United States and Australia as well as many other places. Throughout all of her years of work, however, she has never forgotten her original aspirations that got her there in the first place.