How I Got My Job: Vanessa Clayton, Associate General Counsel, VIA Motors (SJQ 2011)

How I Got My Job: Vanessa Clayton, Associate General Counsel, VIA Motors (SJQ 2011)


This article contains PDO’s feature of Vanessa Clayton, who got an in-house counsel job at VIA Motors after graduating from the S.J. Quinney College of Law in 2011 and completing a post-graduate fellowship with the University Of Utah Office Of General Counsel.

1.) What do you do?

I am Associate General Counsel for VIA Motors.

2.) Where are you from and why did you go to law school?

I’m from Salt Lake City, went to college in Boston and then worked in Singapore for a while.  While in Singapore I decided to go to law school to pursue my interest in corporate and international law.

3.) What kinds of activities did you do in law school?

I participated in Jessup International Moot Court and the Global Justice Think Tank.  I also took as many business law classes as possible. The class that was most helpful in my day to day job was Drafting Contracts.

4.) How did you first make contact with your employer and how did you get this job?

I knew someone at the company, and when the job opened up he let me know.  I had to make a quick decision on whether or not I was interested, and started just a few weeks later.

5.) What does a typical day involve for you/your work?

The majority of my time is spent writing and reviewing contracts.   The company is rapidly growing, so there are new needs every day.  I’ve been involved in due diligence for acquisitions, financing, IP, and employment law.

6.) Best (& worst, if you want) parts of the job?

I really like the people I work with.  The engineers try and make at least one lawyer joke per day.

7.) What tips/advice do you have for jobseeking SJ Quinney students?

Get to know as many people as possible.  Professors, classmates, and lawyers in the community not only provide potential job connections, but are also a great resource for questions.