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Political Science grad sets sights on career in civil rights law

head and shoulders of Robert

Robert “Caleb” Doyle ’20 had one requirement in choosing where he’d attend college: it had to be affordable. York College of Pennsylvania checked that box for him, but it turned out to be just one of the benefits of his education. “I have no regrets and would choose York College 100 times over,” he says. “It was a really great experience for me.”

When Doyle enrolled at York College, he brought 46 college credits with him. They transferred from a local community college as well as some AP courses. He then took between 18 and 21 credits a semester, which put him on track to graduate in two years with a degree in Political Science and a minor in Legal Studies.

But it wasn’t just class time and studying that filled his schedule. Doyle also had several jobs, including work as an Operations Manager at CVS, a paralegal at a law firm, and a tutor in the York College Academic Support Center. While supporting himself through college, Doyle also graduated without any debt. “I set out with this lofty goal, and I was really excited to meet it,” he says. “I have a great degree and no debt, and I’m ready to take the next step.”

Building a better experience

Doyle has had an interest in politics since he was 8 years old. Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential election grabbed his attention, and he started taking a closer look at the behind-the-scenes work of politics. “I felt like a good understanding of politics would help me understand the world better,” he says. “I could understand why and how things work by understanding politics.”

While he worked to improve his own understanding of the political world, Doyle inadvertently helped others do the same. He noticed York College didn’t have a Pre-Law Society on campus, later learning it had dissolved several years prior. But, Doyle says, he was encouraged to revive it.

He was nervous that with only two years at the College, he wouldn’t be able to build enough interest to keep it going. Thanks to the publicity of several events and the support of faculty, the society took off. Now, Doyle says, there is a central outlet for students to find information to help with the LSAT and applying to law school.

Doyle also worked with several professors to apply for York College to receive the Voter Friendly Campus status through the Campus Vote Project and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators. The designation is still a work in progress, but Doyle is proud of getting it rolling.

Pursuing civil law

After completing an internship with Springer Law Firm, Doyle was offered and accepted a position as a legal aid. COVID-19 forced Doyle to return home, and he’s planning to take a gap year before he attends law school. In the meantime, he’s working with Peter Leasure, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, on a research project on housing discrimination. Doyle has been invited to co-author several pieces with Leasure on the topic.

As he considers his career goals, Doyle says, he’s drawn to work in civil law. As he became more involved in discussion about privilege, Doyle felt he has benefited as a white male in society.

“I’ve worked hard for the things I’ve gotten, but I know privilege must have played a part in that,” he says. “In my career, I want to help lift people to the position I was in so they can do the same for themselves.”

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