Alumni Corner: Alex Haden '17

Taylor Elicegui ‘20
Features Editor

I recently caught up with Alex Haden ’17, who was the Editor-in-Chief of Volume 69 of the Law Weekly during his time at UVa. Haden attended Yale for undergrad and came to UVa because he wanted a law school with a strong campus community. Haden was an active member of SBA, the Judiciary Committee, and PILA. Of all those activities, Haden particularly loved Law Weekly for its family-like atmosphere. When you join the Law Weekly family (do it; we have pizza every Monday), sometimes “you laugh, you cry” with a “rag-tag group that ended up being super good friends.” During Haden’s time, the Law Weekly expanded and added several new features: cartoons (now Cartoons by Jenny), Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum (now written by this reporter and Executive Editor Eleanor Schmalzl), faculty interviews, and, my personal favorite, the famous Court of Petty Appeals.

Alex Haden ‘17. Photo courtesy of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, & Flom.

Alex Haden ‘17. Photo courtesy of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, & Flom.

Haden sees humor as integral to the Law Weekly. As he explained to me, the Law Weekly will never beat GroupMes as the school’s source of breaking news, so the newspaper has to add value by adding humor and analysis. The newspaper is the school’s only source of media specifically meant for students—an “internal-facing” institution. The newspaper also serves an important function by contributing to the school’s institutional memory. Students cycle through every three years and each class knows no more than five other class years. By recording events and accomplishments, the Law Weekly creates a record of things that might otherwise be forgotten.

Haden loved his time at UVa and has some advice for the newest members of our community, the Class of 2021. In terms of academics, he said, “There’s no magical formula to winning law school. You have a magical formula for how you learn best. The people who do well because they know themselves and know how to study for themselves.” In terms of extracurricular activities, Haden said, “The whole point is you can’t be in the library the whole time. You have to do something that brings you joy and relief. Find enough that you can still stay motivated to work.” Don’t know where to start for extracurricular activities? Stop by Slaughter 259 at 5:30 p.m. on Mondays to meet the best crew in the law school. Even if you don’t like us, we can help point you in the right direction and send you on your way with some road pizza.