Meet Estrella Burks-Parra ’23 W&L’s distinctive summer programming helped Burks-Parra develop her personal and professional interests.
We love it when classes are in session here on campus, but the learning doesn’t stop when summer starts! Summers offer unique opportunities for Washington and Lee University students to explore their interests and gain valuable professional experience, and W&L’s abundant resources make it easy to find internships and research opportunities across the country and around the world.
As part of the Faces of W&L series, we caught up with W&L students about their unique summer experiences. Learn more about student summer opportunities here.
Name: Estrella Burks-Parra
Hometown: Whittier, California
Major: Politics and Theater
This summer was one of my greatest adventures thanks to all the aid and support that I received from Washington and Lee. I started off my summer in Birmingham, Alabama, at Lightfoot Law Firm and spent a week participating in their Pre-Law program, which is modeled after a summer clerkship role. The firm has tons of W&L undergraduate and law alumni working there, and the feeling of community was extremely evident. It was incredible getting to network and connect with them over our love of law and Washington and Lee.
The day after the Pre-Law program concluded, I headed to New York City to conduct Theatre Playwrighting Research. During my month in NYC, I saw 24 shows, both on and off Broadway; took courses with the Barrow Group and Chicago Dramatists; and was accepted into the prestigious Kennedy Center’s Playwrighting Intensive. Throughout this whole period, I was also studying for the LSAT, which I took in August.
While I was in NYC I got to spend time with Olivia Hewitt, a W&L alumna who I performed with back in 2019 in a production of “Everybody” here at W&L. I even got to watch her perform live in the city, which was such a full circle moment.
I was able to accomplish so much this summer thanks to an SSIR grant, Johnson funds and the incredible support of alumni. I am immensely grateful for this whirlwind of a summer where I got to expand and develop both my personal and professional passions.
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