CARA CLAIRE CHANG 

email caraclairec@gmail.com | linkedin linkedin.com/in/caraclairechang

Globally curious and socially-minded international relations graduate with paralegal experience, driven by a commitment to justice and diversity.

Having grown up in an international community, I strive to understand diversity in the human experience. Strong suits include cross-cultural communication, legal writing and proofreading, interpersonal skills, and creative thinking.

In the past, I’ve worked at three law firms, held workshops at juvenile prisons in South Africa, tutored English in Taiwan, studied EU politics in the Czech Republic, and interpreted for legal clients in Chicago’s Chinatown.

Always seeking paid or volunteer opportunities at the intersection of law, internationalism, and advocacy.


EDUCATION

Knox College, Class of 2019

  • B.A. in International Relations, minor in Gender & Women’s Studies
  • Recipient of the Hermann Muelder Scholarship
  • Studied abroad during the Fall 2018 semester at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic

Suzhou Singapore International School, Class of 2015

  • International Baccalaureate Diploma

WORK EXPERIENCE

Legal Assistant, Westlake Financial Services (Los Angeles, CA), 2019-2020

• Worked with in-house counsel on security interest and finance law, coordinated between in-house and outside counsel, drafted settlement and servicing agreements and contracts
• Conducted Westlaw research with focus on UCC issues

Bilingual Paralegal, Demidchik Law Firm (Greater Los Angeles, CA), 2019

• Worked full-time assisting attorneys on cases in immigration law (political asylum, removal proceedings), family law (DVRO, custody, dissolution), and other civil and criminal cases.
• Also worked as English-Mandarin legal interpreter and translator, interpreting for client-attorney consultations and court appearances, and translating personal statements, contracts, bills, and other evidence.

Law Intern, Projects Abroad Human Rights Office (Cape Town, South Africa), 2018

  • Interned at a pro bono legal clinic servicing the Cape Town area, including setting up pop-up clinics twice a week in disadvantaged townships to intake new clients
  • Worked on cases in refugee, property, labor, and family law, reporting to three attorneys

Law Intern, The Evans International Law Firms (Westminster, Illinois), 2017

  • Drafted and edited civil agreements and orders, corresponded with clients
  • Created MailChimp newsletters, filmed and edited videos discussing legal issues, organized social media, helped organize fundraising gala for nonprofit offshoot.

Graphic Designer, Startup Seatbug (Taipei, Taiwan), 2015-16

  • Involved in early stages of travel app entrepreneurial project
  • Networked to build a team and submitted applications for incubator programs
  • As the designer, worked on visual brand development: created logos, business cards, and pitch deck

Private English Tutor (Tainan, Taiwan), 2015-16

  • Worked with a sixth-grade student struggling to obtain a passing grade (at 60%) for 2 hours/week
  • Helped improve her English proficiency on two exams over a four-month period, from 42% to 65%

LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE

Vice President of Community Relations, Delta Delta Delta — Epsilon Chapter, 2018

  • As part of the Executive team, provided a voice and made decisions on how the chapter is lead and run along with the President and other Vice Presidents
  • Lead the Community Relations team of three, overseeing activities in organizing philanthropic events for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, establishing the organization’s reputation on and off campus, and creating social events to build community

Vice President of Administration, Panhellenic Council, 2018

  • As part of Panhellenic Council, worked with other executive members in actively making Greek life a more diverse, inclusive, and welcoming space through diversity dialogues, discussions on strengthening inclusivity and overcoming stereotypes, and organizing Greek Week events to promote unity
  • As VP of Administration, created an annual budget, sent invoices and collected dues for each chapter, and kept weekly minutes

Publicity Chair, Terpsichore Dance Collective, 2017

  • Managed and updated Terp’s social media accounts
  • Create posters to advertise dance events and classes
  • Designed and created programs for the Fall and Winter formal shows
  • Publicized formal dance concerts and events via campus ­wide email and Knox’s events calendar

VOLUNTEER EXPERIENCE

Human Rights Volunteer, Projects Abroad Human Rights Office, 2017

  • Visited juvenile detention centers (ages 13-17) outside the Cape Town area twice weekly to hold workshops and conversations with the delinquents
  • Held sexual health workshops to combat HIV/AIDS epidemic in South Africa
  • Helped lead sexual consent workshops for both the boys’ and girls’ centers
  • Participated in a pop-up soup kitchen for Mandela Day

Legal Interpreter, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, 2017

  • Volunteer interpreter for Chinatown Pro Bono Legal Clinic, a branch of Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, doing intakes and Mandarin-English interpretations for walk-in clients.
  • Volunteered out-of-work hours for an immigration Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) case of a non-citizen client seeking divorce and legal status in the United States away from her husband

Secretary & Volunteer, Habitat for Humanity, 2012-15

  • Three-year secretary, longest member of the leadership team
  • Fundraised 80,000 RMB (12,000 USD) over three years to volunteer on two build trips

LANGUAGE & SKILLS

  • English (fluent), Mandarin Chinese (fluent)
  • French (elementary proficiency), Czech (elementary proficiency)
  • Adobe Certified Associate in Photoshop 2013
  • Adobe Certified Associate in Illustrator 2013

SELECTED COLLEGIATE COURSES & ACTIVITIES

  • Political courses: Advanced International Relations, American Political Thought, American Foreign Policy, Survey of International Relations, Survey of Comparative Politics, Contemporary Politics in Central Europe, Communism vs. Capitalism: Social Democracy
  • Gender courses: Philosophies of Feminism, Global Reproductive Justice, Gender Issues Within the European Context, Inequality and Intersectionality
  • Published poet in Vol. 49, No. 2 (Spring 2017) of Catch, Knox College’s award-winning literary journal
  • Member of Pre-Law Club, dancer in Terpsichore Dance Collective, occasional actor in various outlets