Stephanie (Kobal) Koenig

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'04 Women's Studies, Marketing | Attorney, Fitzpatrick Lentz and Bubba | Allentown, PA
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Stephanie (Kobal) Koenig

Liberal Arts Major: Women's Studies

Other Major: Marketing

Hometown: Allentown, PA

Current Location: Allentown, PA

What enrichment activities did you participate in as a student?

As a student, I participated in two internships as part of my undergraduate degree in Women's Studies. Following my sophomore year, I interned in the legal field. I spent four weeks with a small private firm, four weeks with a large private firm, and four weeks with the Lehigh County District Attorney's Office. Following my junior year, I interned with the Women's Law Project in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Both of these internships, which were supported and for which I received credit, helped me obtain my first role.

What was your first job after graduating from Penn State?

In August 2007, I began my first job as an attorney with Tallman Hudders and Sorrentino in Allentown, Pennsylvania (one of the firms at which I had interned following my sophomore year).

Who was your favorite faculty member?

My favorite faculty member was Brian Jara. At the time, Brian was also the faculty adviser for the Women's Studies Honor Society, of which I was president. I recall that Brian's class emphasized the need to constantly question and to think on one's feettwo skills that have helped me throughout my career.

How did your liberal arts education and skills prepare you for life after graduation?

My liberal arts education is the cornerstone of my legal practice. The writing and analytical skills that were emphasized in my Women's Studies degree are invaluable to the practice of law.

What networking advice would you share with current students?

I recommend that students take advantage of networking, and when someone offers you their contact information, do not be afraid to reach out. During my time at Penn State, we awarded a Women's Studies Award to Mary Jo Romeo. I think this was circa 2002, and at that time, Mary Jo was the publisher of Working Mother Magazine. At that awards presentation, Mary Jo handed me her business card and said to contact her if I had questions. I did contact her (I was worried she was just handing me a card and didn't really want me to contact her), and ended up shadowing her in New York City. This is one example of the power of networking.

What role have mentors played in your career progression?

I have had many mentors in my career progression. Some have been great examples, and some have been great examples of what not to do. I believe mentors are of the utmost importance to help students navigate the workplace environment.

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