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Richa Bhattarai

Litigation Support Professional/Title Examiner at Cole & Moore PSC

richabhattarai01@gmail.com

Majored in Criminal Justice

Graduated in 2019


Explain your career path

My application was accepted last week for PhD in International Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw-Atlanta, Georgia. PhD in International Conflict Management is the only such programs available in North America. This program is very competitive in terms of selecting the applicants. PhD students accepted into the program receive broad interdisciplinary training and opportunities that draw on an array of academic disciplines. My area of research is concentrated into Nepal’s relationship with its Neighboring Countries and role of law in settling international disputes. This will also research on Kalapni-Lipulekh issue that that took place last year between Nepal & India. Further, the paper will research on Nepal-USA & Nepal-China relationship. Some of the areas my paper will focus are Treaty Law, State responsibility, International peace and security, Peaceful settlement of international disputes, Diplomatic and consular law, United Nations institutions and law making, International human rights law, and International criminal law.

I am the first generation of my family to earn this highest academic level. I am also planning to continue my master’s M.S. in International Conflict Management. This will be my third master’s degree. I completed my first master’s degree from Southeast Missouri State University in Master of Science in Criminal Justice, and second master’s degree Master of Laws from Washburn University School of Law. I was also recognized as Pro Bono Honor from Washburn Law. Last year, I planned to pursue my PhD from University of Kent, Canterbury, England but due to Global Pandemic the program got postponed for that year. Since, the PhD in International Conflict Management is a very competitive program, I spend more of my time in preparing the best proposal for being accepted in this program. Currently, I am working at Cole & Moore, P.S.C. Attorneys-at-Law. I am working on the Real Estate, Criminal Defense, and Family Immigration Department.

My long term goal is to work in the area of criminal law and international law. I will be focusing on the individual criminal responsibility for crimes like sexual assault & battery, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, homicide, and international crimes, such as war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, and aggression. This PhD degree is the goal where I can test my knowledge that I gained from different school throughout this time.

What was your major at Southeast and how would you characterize the quality of that program to prospective students?

My major at Southeast was Criminal Justice. The reason behind doing this course was to understand the American system of law enforcement, courts, prisons, counseling services, and other organizations and agencies that people come into contact with on a daily basis. I was always curious to know what strategies are applied to prevent crime and to create a peaceful, law-abiding society. Some classes were very helpful to understand the psychological and sociological mindset of the people that later turns them out to be a criminal. Another reason behind this study was to understand the Death Penalty System of the United States. Since capital punishment in Nepal has been abolished under the country's common law, I was always eager to understand how the capital punishment is viewed by the United States. The course helped me to explore the debate that raised on the validity of capital punishment and why the longer trials and appeals are required when a person's life is on the line. I was able to understand the need for more lawyers and experts on both sides of the case, and the relative rarity of executions makes the capital punishment expensive. The program was very helpful to turn my professional career in a good direction.

Why did you choose to attend Southeast?

The reason behind choosing Southeast was because the faculty members were very helpful to review my documents to get accepted for the program. While I was in Nepal I got an opportunity to chat with my Advisor over the phone and she explained me about the course and its importance to let me decide whether it would be suitable for my long-term goal. Later, I got appointed as a Graduate Assistant (GA) at Counseling and Disability Services and worked under Campus Violence Prevention Program. I got full Scholarship that minimized my financial stress. My work as a GA helped me to understand the administrative stuffs and learn office etiquette. I still remember how nervous and shy I was during the first few weeks of the school. Southeast really helped me to overcome my weakness and focus on my strength. Whenever I recall back to my time at Southeast, I will always feel fortunate to make the decision to choose southeast.

Who influenced you most during your time at Southeast?

My Advisor Dr. Michelle Kilburn and Professor Dr. Carl Kinnison are the two important people from the faculty who influenced the most during my time at Southeast. Besides the faculty. Ms. Torie Grogran, Former Director of Counseling and Disability Services, and Ms. Donna St. Sauver, Coordinator of Campus Violence Prevention Program are two important people of my life from Southeast. During the first few weeks as a GA I was not very confident in during class presentation and speaking in front of people. As English being the second language, and due to cultural differences I was very nervous and was having difficulty in opening up myself. There were several other challenges that came across like communication, difficulty in understanding the lectures, academic writing, and social skills. These people helped me the most to bring the best out of me. Similarly, I got to make some really good friends at Southeast.

Share your best college memory.

The best college memory is the 2019 Meeting of the Minds regional conference in Kansas City, Missouri. This was the time when I made a best memories with the student organization Redhawk Health Educator (a student group of certified peer educator). Additionally, I got an opportunity to present a session on the use of technology, videos and interactive strategies to inform students about alcohol use, bystander intervention and consent. I explained about the advantage of the technology to educate students about the responsible use of alcohol.

Some other college memory includes End of Semester party at Sara Wagner's (Former Assistant Director of Fitness and Wellness) house and outreach event named "The Clothesline Project" organized by Campus Violence Prevention Program.

What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Southeast?

1) stay optimistic

2) be confident

3) fight for justice

4) never get influenced by wrong mindset

5) its okay to get confused sometime to determine your destiny

Describe Southeast in three words.

Opportunity, Growth, Equality

What advice would you give current students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?

1) Never be afraid to reach out to the professor whenever you need help.

2) There is no perfect yes or no when you enter in the professional field. It's all up to you which way you want to choose and how you want to present your knowledge.

3) Never doubt yourself and always listen to your heart (not people) that says "YOU CAN DO IT"

Contact

(573) 651-2154
modegard@semo.edu
Memorial 208A

College of Humanities and Social Sciences
One University Plaza
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701