ESHS Senior Headed to LMU to Become a ‘Legal Eagle’

Emily Pita is a graduating senior at El Segundo High School (ESHS). This fall, she will be attending Loyola Marymount University (LMU) to pursue her dreams of becoming a lawyer. She is one of 70 students this year that was accepted to the LMU honors program.
The political science major, who will minor in international relations and Spanish, says that playing the “Game of Life” at age 10 prompted her to become “fascinated with the idea of being a lawyer.” She goes on to explain that she believes “there is a bit of irony in the concept of arguing for a living.” In the past two years, she has given more consideration to the idea of becoming an immigration lawyer. Her parents are both Cuban refugees who came to the United States when they were children. “America was built through immigrants coming to this country,” Pita said. “People who came here with their families at an age when they could not make their own decision, in my opinion, should not be deported. It makes me sad that so many of these students live in fear and have no security.”

During her junior year at ESHS, Pita founded the Hispanic Student Union along with three other students. The club’s largest event of the year is the Hispanic Student Union Culture Fair and Fundraiser. For a $4 admission fee, students and families are invited to an “all-you-can-eat” buffet of food from around the world. There are about 70 dishes donated, which are then separated by continent. This year’s event drew a crowd of 220 students and community members. The money is raised to fund the annual Hispanic Student Union Scholarship, which is awarded to a club senior. “The club has grown a lot since it was established and we now have 15 active members,” says Pita. “It makes me so happy to see more students getting involved.”

Pita has been very involved in academic and extra curricular pursuits during her high school years. She will have completed six AP courses upon graduation and serves as the ASB Commissioner of Culture and Diversity. She is also a four-year photography student in the Visual and Performing Arts Pathway. Her senior capstone project involved using photography to illustrate three topics in three different ways. “I enjoy photography,” she explains. “It is interesting to see the world in a different way through the lens of a camera.”

In line with her interests in political science and legislation, Pita was honored to serve as the ESHS delegate for the American Legion Auxiliary’s California Girls State in 2017. “It was the best six days of my entire life; it was very empowering!” she said. Girls State is a leadership program designed to increase awareness and knowledge of governmental processes while teaching young women about the duties, privileges, rights and responsibilities of citizenship.

Pita says she is looking forward to the LMU honors program and everything the university has to offer. She is especially looking forward to obtaining law firm experience through internships as part of her studies in the political science major program. She believes the college-level coursework she has completed at ESHS since her sophomore year as set her up well for her journey into higher education. “El Segundo High School has given me a great foundation and I believe I am more than ready for college and everything ahead,” Pita said.