Staying Involved


The following blog was authored by Megan Weinlein, W&L Athletics Extern.  She is in her third year of law school at Washington and Lee after graduating from Tulane University in 2008 with a bachelor of arts degree in communications.  Megan played two seasons of soccer at Tulane, was named Tulane Women’s Soccer Newcomer of the Year after her freshman season, and earned two letters before the sport was suspended after Hurricane Katrina. In her two seasons, Weinlein played in 31 games, started 29 and accumulated three points on three assists. She received a postgraduate Scholarship from Conference USA following her undergraduate career.

By: Megan Weinlein
Athletics Extern

Weinlein from her playing days at Tulane

When my collegiate soccer career ended, I assumed it also marked the end of athletics in my everyday life.  But somehow, even in law school, athletics remained a consistent part of my life.  Shortly after enrolling in law school at W&L, I became a member of the University Athletic Committee.  This committee, including faculty, university administrators, student athletes, alumni and athletic administrators, is charged with acting in an advisory capacity with regard to all aspects of University athletics, from intercollegiate to recreational.  I have served on the committee all three years of law school.  Over the past three years, I have spent a significant amount of time deliberating the career I want to pursue.  On every occasion, I came back to university athletics as the career field I excelled in, and most importantly, enjoyed.  Last year, I decided to commit my job search to opportunities in university athletic administration.

In order to better prepare myself, I am serving as an extern in the Washington and Lee Athletic Department.  As an extern, I work on several different assignments.  Every week I research and draft answers to compliance questions that are raised by coaches or administrators.  Additionally, I am assigned special projects that come through the department.  Last month, I helped draft policies and procedures for the new athletic department manual.  Currently, I am working on W&L’s Institutional Self-Study Guide (ISSG).  In order to maintain NCAA compliance, each member institution must complete the ISSG every five years.  Over the next couple of weeks, I will go with the Associate Athletic Director, Shana Levine, to interview several University administrators in different departments (e.g. registrar’s office, financial aid, etc.).  Each of these projects has required the use of my legal education in some form or another.

When I first decided that higher athletic administration is the career I wanted to pursue rather than that of a traditional lawyer, I assumed my legal education would come in handy every once in a while, but I had not idea the extent to which I would use it.  I notice, everyday, a different application of my legal education.  I don’t use any knowledge of a specific Virginia statute or piece of Federal legislation, but it’s the “thinking like a lawyer” that is applicable.  I have to research NCAA rules and interpret their meaning and appropriate use.  Although my “client” is the athletic department, I still interview other administrators and staff members like “clients” for various department projects.  I have become much more aware of everything I have learned in law school because I am actually using it on a daily basis.

I never believed my legal education would be a waste, but I also didn’t think it would be used every day in the field that I want to pursue.  In my externship, I have realized that my legal education is going to make me a better athletic administrator and it is something that I will be grateful for as I pursue this career.

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