When Marilyn Maize set out on her career path, it didn't lead to the legal field. But her journey changed thanks to some divine intervention, coming together with an intern position in Marion County Prosecuting Attorney Luke Bryant's office.
"I feel like God was calling me for that," she said.
Maize discovered that medical school wasn't quite the fit she expected after two years of study at Northwest State University and two years at Hannibal-LaGrange University. So she enrolled in law school at Southern Illinois University Carbondale and is preparing to graduate in August. Maize is back in her hometown, gaining real-world experience through the court cases and legal procedures at the Marion County Courthouse in Hannibal.
Maize said law school students often pursue internships during their studies, so she wrote a letter to Bryant. He accepted her request, telling Maize he could use her help during the summer. The hands-on experience she acquires each day has been a valuable addition to her classroom experiences.
Maize overcame her shyness arguing points in class and speaking in front of her peers and professors, she said. "To get past that and gain confidence was really empowering," she said.
As the summer approaches, Maize looks forward to serving an active role in cases and performing various tasks in Bryant's office.
She commended her parents, G.L and Loretta Maize, for their steadfast support and for offering her encouragement through the tough times.
Maize said she is ready for whatever her career may bring next, and she is happy to be honing her skills in Hannibal.
"I think it would be good to stay in my hometown," she said. "I'm used to it here and I like it here."