SJD Class of 2019: Meshael Alahmadi Seeks to Forge New Paths in Saudi Arabia for Women in Law

May 8, 2019

Hometown: Saud Arabia
Undergraduate institution: King Abdul-Aziz University
Major: Law

Involved In: Intern for Pascua Yaqui Court of Appeals; Plain English for Lawyers Workshop; Legal Research Boot Camp; writing workshop with Professor Rebecca Tsosie and attended UNDRIP Implementation: Braiding International, Domestic, and Indigenous Laws; Water Law and Policy Conference; The “END” of Environmental Law: A Multi-Disciplinary; The Second Annual National Conference for Constitutional Law Scholars.

University of Arizona Law Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) student Meshael Alahmadi will fulfill a childhood dream when she graduates this month. Alahmadi, who is originally from Saudi Arabia, always dreamed of being one of the first Saudi women to hold a doctorate in law and of being able to teach and practice law in Saudi Arabia.

Now, Alahmadi will return to Saudi Arabia, where she has accepted a position as an assistant law professor at Majmaah University. She plans to obtain her Saudi lawyers license in order to both teach and practice law. Her goal is to one day establish a women’s school of law in Saudi Arabia.

Alahmadi first joined Arizona Law as a Master of Laws (LLM) student. She says that from the first time she visited campus, she knew immediately that this was where she wanted to attend law school.

“My experience with my LLM confirmed that my instincts were sound,” says Alahmadi. “Arizona Law gives a quality education. The first day you walk into class, you realize how much you will learn and receive from the professors and the school itself.”

She completed her LLM in International Trade and Business Law in 2014 and applied to multiple SJD programs. 

"I applied at Arizona Law before I applied anywhere else, hoping that I could remain here,” she says. “I received several other offers, but I cannot describe how thrilled I was when I was accepted by the James E. Rogers College of Law. I now have an SJD degree from the best law school ever. All the classes I took were beneficial, informative and applicable to developing my legal competence.”

Alahmadi, who successfully defended her dissertation, "Comparing the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill with the 1991 Arabian Gulf Oil Field Fire: Lessons to Learn," says she will miss the hours spent at the law library with cheerful librarians who never hesitated to offer their help and time.

Her advice for anyone thinking about pursuing an SJD at Arizona Law: be prepared to see your dreams realized.

Says Alahmadi, “Expect a lot of reading and to be inspired and encouraged to never give up until you fulfill your dreams.”