Meet the Class of 2024: Geetanjali Talpade

“A weird thing happened to me during my 1L year,” Geetanjali Talpade, now a graduating 3L, recalled. “Instead of narrowing my focus, I found I enjoyed everything, a bit like a compass who has lost its North. That’s why I decided to put my hat in the ring for clerking.” 

Geetanjali Talpade

Starting in August, Talpade will clerk for the Maine Superior Court. She feels the exposure to trial court and a breadth of legal issues will help her narrow her focus. One aspect of her legal education that has always been and remains a passion, however, is environmental law. This interest is what brought her initially to Maine Law, which offers an Environmental Law Certificate and has one of the only Arctic Law programs in the country. 

When Talpade decided to attend Maine Law, she recalled feeling confident in that decision. For her, that assurance came from time spent exploring other career options and passions. While the idea of law school always was in the back of her mind, her decision to pursue a law career came during a temporary gig acting as a jury member for a Moot Court Competition. 

“I found myself sitting there and really contemplating and dissecting the arguments,” Talpade said. “It put me at ease with the idea of studying the law.” 

A little nervous at first about the rigors of law school, Talpade found she slipped easily into a demanding work schedule, honing not just her skill for critical thinking and writing, but also her stamina for challenging academics. 

“Law school has made me very good at head-down work,” she said. “I have benefited a lot from demonstrating to myself that this is something I can do.” 

She has lost a few skills too, Talpade conceded. 

“I can’t listen to podcasts anymore. Everyday I am at my threshold for how many people I can have talking to me. And I’ve also lost my tolerance for ineptitude.” 

Talpade credits her professors and peers for setting her up for success, always looking, finding, and feeding her new opportunities to enrich the law school experience. 

A high point of Talpade’s time in law school, she said, was traveling to The United Nations Climate Change Conference COP 28 in Dubai last year. While the conference itself can be overwhelming, Talpade said her education equipped her well and she was able to appreciate the very high level talks happening around issues of environmental and international legal frameworks. 

“If I can walk into COP28, engage with and understand what’s happening, I know I’m well prepared for whatever comes next.”