Racing to success: Law student founded the 'Tortious and the Hare' club

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An avid runner, law student Christian Ieraci recently completed a virtual 1,000-km race.

Photo courtesy of Christian Ieraci

By Sheila Pursglove
Legal News

With a strong interest in athletics and desire to help others, Christian Ieraci was originally drawn towards a career in the health care industry, earning his undergrad degree in biology from Canada’s University of Windsor, with the aim of going to medical school.

His research thesis studying neuro-behavioral cognition in Great Lakes fish provided the opportunity to try academic writing—and  he enjoyed this far more than science classes. He decided to search for a career where he could use those research and writing skills to help others, and is now a 2L at Detroit Mercy Law School.    

A native of Windsor, Ontario, Ieraci enjoys the connections and relationships he has formed with faculty, staff, and students on this side of the Detroit River.    

“ As a Canadian student in the Single J.D. program, I was nervous about being the odd one out, but my classmates were nothing short of amazing from day one,” he says.His background in biology and health sciences prepared Ieraci for the complex issues involved in health law; but in his 1L year he thoroughly enjoyed contract and property law. And since interning at Michigan’s Court of Appeals, he has become interested in a judicial career.

This year, he a junior member of Law Review, and is looking forward to researching novel legal issues.

Ieraci attended the Pope Francis Legal Clinic twice, and participated in the United Community Housing Coalition Clinic – opportunities that have inspired him to make pro bono work an important aspect of his future career.   

As a 2L class representative, Ieraci enjoys being a voice for his fellow classmates; and enjoys the camaraderie with fellow members of Delta Theta Phi.

Ieraci has also relished the big-city atmosphere of the Motor City, with many of his pre-pandemic breaks from studies spent exploring Detroit with friends, grabbing lunch or walking around downtown, taking in the beautiful architecture and booming shops and restaurants.

The coronavirus put paid to all that, with the border between the U.S. and Canada closed.    

“I miss the in-class discussions and impromptu office hours with my professors. I have to commend my professors on their ability to adapt to online platforms to make the process as painless as possible,” he says.    “I miss my law school friends. It’s strange not seeing this group of friends for such a long period of time. The border closure makes this even more difficult, as I’m unable to visit at all. We’ve been meeting on Skype every week or so in order to stay in touch.”   
An avid runner, Ieraci founded the law school’s “Tortious and the Hare Club”—not only a bad pun, but as a way to meet new classmates and relax after a hard week of schoolwork.

“I use running as a way to eliminate stress in my life, so when my classmates and I began to feel the pressures of law school, my natural response was to suggest a group run,” he explains. “After a few successful group runs, I suggested we should create an official club. We used to run three miles every Friday and end at a restaurant to have a quick celebratory meal. The run club became a weekly highlight for our members, to de-stress and get some exercise with our peers.”

During this pandemic, Ieraci has shifted his study schedule to include golfing, and a lot more running, and ran a virtual 1,000-km race from May 1 to August 1.  He also enjoys hockey and rock climbing; reading; hiking and climbing; and spending time at home with his parents and his dog, Joey.



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