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Immigration Law – a Natural Fit


Sarah Krieger ’11
Sarah Krieger ’11

Hamilton College degree in hand, Sarah Krieger ’11 went straight from the Hill to Columbia Law School, then into a job with the U.S. Department of Justice. She was attorney advisor in the Executive Office for Immigration Review, Office of the Chief Immigration Judge, clerking for eight judges.  Krieger has a new job, this one with the Department of Homeland Security.

She works in U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Refugee, Asylum and International Operations. “I'm an asylum officer, which means that after certification, I will be adjudicating affirmative asylum applications. I chose this job so I could work directly with people again and remember the importance of immigration and refugee law, policy, and procedure in the U.S.,” she says.

Krieger was first drawn to immigration law at Hamilton, when she wrote her senior theses on Arizona’s SB-1070 bill, a controversial immigration law. “I was a double major in government and Hispanic studies, so immigration law is a natural interest for me that combined my two majors,” she says.

In her line of work, she says, the writing and oratorical skills she developed at Hamilton are invaluable. So was her study abroad in Spain, where her language improved, and she felt for the first time what it was like to be a stranger and an outsider in someone else’s world. Associate Professor of Spanish Jessica Burke and Philip Klinkner, the James S. Sherman Memorial Professor and Chair of Government, were especially influential for Krieger.

“Beyond what I learned at Hamilton, the alumni network has been indispensable. The Hamilton connection is a strong one. Don't ever hesitate to reach out to fellow alums,” she says.

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