Neha GoelOver the past 10 years, Neha Goel ’20 has lived in India, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. She moved to the U.S. last fall with her family, and started at Sage as a transfer student.

“Since I’ve come to Sage, I’ve felt so welcomed,” she said. “The professors, the students have just been so nice.”

Goel became involved on campus – she holds a work-study position making phone calls on behalf of the Sage Fund for Excellence, and she is co-president of the Class of 2020. The one thing she was unsure of as a new Sage student was her academic path.

“I never knew that I wanted to get into the law field,” Goel said. “It was coming to Sage and studying in this Law and Society program, and the information and the knowledge that my professors gave me.”

Associate Professor of Law & Society Bobbi Gabrenya, J.D., inspired Goel to think about law as a career, and a class with Associate Professor of Law & Society Janel Leone, Ph.D., encouraged her interest in human rights.

Professor Leone’s class critically evaluates how researchers, service providers, policy makers, the criminal justice system, and the general public respond to domestic violence. Goel conducted significant research into how cultural traditions can lead to domestic violence and presented “Domestic Violence and Dowry through a Hindu Lens” at Sage’s Undergraduate Research Day in April.

She also began a volunteer position with a domestic violence hotline and pursued an internship with a non-profit organization called Have Justice, Will Travel, which provides free legal services for survivors of domestic violence.

“I’m observing the process of helping victims: getting them restraining orders, providing legal advice,” Goel said. “I help with paperwork, I observe the process, and then I help with brainstorming.”

“I think not a lot of people know what’s happening around the world,” she continued. “It’s high time that we do realize that domestic violence is not just a particular country’s issue; it’s everybody’s problem.”

Now, Goel is interviewing at law schools and planning her future in international law and human rights. “Sage has been like an inspiration,” she said.